Mia Farrow And Second Witness Say Naomi Campbell Lied About 'Blood Diamonds'

Farrow told the court what happened at breakfast the next morning: "[Campbell] was quite excited and she said last night I was awakened by someone knocking at the door. They were men sent from Charles Taylor and they gave me a huge diamond!"

Campbell testified Aug. 5th that at breakfast, Farrow told her the gift must have been from Taylor because no one else at the dinner could have given her uncut diamonds.

"Did you tell Naomi Campbell that the diamond or diamonds came from Charles Taylor?" Prosecutor Nick Koumjian asked Farrow on the stand today.

"Absolutely not. Naomi said they came from Charles Taylor," Farrow replied.

Taylor's defense attorneys tried to poke holes in Farrow's testimony, asking leading questions about the clarity of her recollection, noting that several people including Campbell have said there were several diamonds, not one "huge diamond" as Farrow recalls Campbell saying.

The defense asked Farrow about a quote from the Nightline segment, in which Farrow can be heard saying, "I am eager to see the people of Liberia and Sierra Leone see justice. They need that." Farrow denied that it showed she was biased.

Campbell told the court last week that two men she came to believe to be representative of the warlord had given her a pouch containing several "dirty-looking" diamonds, and that she had give the gems to Jeremy Ractliffe, then director of the Nelson Mandel Children's Fund, so he could sell them and use the money for the charity. Campbell had previously denied to ABC News that she received any gems from Taylor.

Ractliffe confirmed that he received three uncut diamonds from Campbell in 1997. South African police say Ractliffe brought them the gems August 5th.

In a statement released Aug. 6th, Ractliffe said that he had received "three small uncut diamonds" on Sept. 26, 1997. "I took them because I thought it might well be illegal for her to take uncut diamonds out of the country," explained Ractliffe. "Naomi suggested they could be of some benefit to the Nelson Mandela Children's Fund, but I told her I would not involve the NMCF in anything that could possibly be illegal."

"In the end I decided I should just keep them," said Ractliffe, who felt that it was in the best interest of NMCF, former South African president Mandela, and Campbell, "none of who were benefitting in any way."

Ractliffe told ABC News he gave the diamonds to South Africa's special police, known as the Hawks, on Thursday. On Friday, a spokesman for the Hawks told South African media they had received the diamonds and were having them authenticated.

CLICK HERE to follow the ABC News Investigative Team on Twitter.

Taylor has denied giving diamonds to Campbell. In a statement to ABC News, Taylor's defense attorneys continued to dispute the story. Said attorney Terry Munyard, "If the court finds that these things were diamonds and they were the gift of Mr. Taylor and therefore says he also bought arms and ammunition for Sierra Leonean rebels on that trip to South Africa, the defense says no competent criminal court could possibly make such a huge leap from one small fact to another."

  • 1
  • |
  • 2
  • |
  • 3
  • |
  • 4
Join the Discussion
blog comments powered by Disqus
You Might Also Like...