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STL Appoints New Investigator to Deal with Contempt Charges PDF Print E-mail
COURTS - SPECIAL TRIBUNAL FOR LEBANON
Friday, 11 April 2014 10:58

The Registrar of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon, Daryl Mundis, has appointed Mr Kenneth Scott as the new amicus curiae to deal with the contempt charges currently before the STL.
Mr Scott, a Harvard graduate, has extensive experience in international law, having served as Trial Attorney at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia for over ten years.
Mr Scott replaces the previous amicus curiae assigned to investigate the 29 April allegations of contempt, Mr Stéphane Bourgon. Mr Bourgon has returned to Montréal Canada before the end of his assignment as amicus curiae after having been appointed as Crown Prosecutor working on organised crime trials.
The core staff of the amicus curiae team will continue to work for the new amicus.

 
Lubanga case: Appeals hearings postponed; new dates to be announced shortly PDF Print E-mail
COURTS - INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT
Friday, 11 April 2014 08:39

The hearings initially scheduled by the Appeals Chamber of the International Criminal Court (ICC) for 14 and 15 April 2014 in the case The Prosecutor v. Thomas Lubanga Dyilo are postponed for logistical reasons. The Appeals Chamber will issue an order rescheduling the hearing shortly.
On 21 March 2014, the Appeals Chamber scheduled a hearing in the case The Prosecutor v. Thomas Lubanga Dyilo to be held on 14 and 15 April 2014 in order to allow the parties and participants to orally address the Appeals Chamber on different relevant issues arising in the appeals. At the hearing, the Judges would also hear the testimony of two additional witnesses, witnesses D-0040 and D-0041, as requested by the Defense.
The hearing will be a public hearing held in the presence of Thomas Lubanga Dyilo, his Defence Counsel, the Prosecution and the Legal Representatives of the Victims. Mr Lubanga Dyilo may address the Appeals Chamber at the closure of the hearing. An order setting out a precise timetable for the hearing will be issued shortly.
The Trial Chamber rendered the conviction decision in the Lubanga case on 14 March 2012. It was subsequently appealed by the Defence. The decision sentencing Mr Lubanga to 14 years imprisonment was rendered on 10 July 2012 and subsequently appealed by the Defence and the Office of the Prosecutor.  Following the two-day hearing, the Judges will make their decision on the appeals in due course.
Background: Thomas Lubanga Dyilo, founder of the Union des patriotes congolais [Union of Congolese Patriots] (UPC) and the Force patriotique pour la libération du Congo [Patriotic Force for the Liberation of Congo] (FPLC), former Commander-in-Chief of the FPLC and president of the UPC, was found guilty on 14 March 2012 by Trial Chamber I, as co-perpetrator, of committing the war crimes of the enlistment and conscription of children under the age of 15 into the FPLC and using them to participate actively in hostilities between September 2002 and August 2003. On 10 July 2012, he was sentenced to a total period of 14 years of imprisonment. On 7 August 2012, Trial Chamber I issued a decision on the principles to be applied for reparations to victims in the case. All three decisions are currently subject to appeals. Mr Lubanga Dyilo remains in the Court's custody.

 
Statement by the International Criminal Court on the passing of Arthur Robinson PDF Print E-mail
COURTS - INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT
Thursday, 10 April 2014 10:17

The International Criminal Court (ICC) joins with the people of Trinidad and Tobago in mourning the passing of Arthur Robinson, former Prime Minister and later President of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. He played a critical role in the establishment of the ICC.
“It is with great sorrow that I learnt of the passing of former President Robinson. He will be remembered by many as the ‘grandfather’ of the International Criminal Court”, said ICC President Sang-Hyun Song. In a speech to the United Nations General Assembly in 1989, Mr Robinson revived the idea of establishing a Court with jurisdiction over international crimes, triggering the process that eventually led to the adoption of the Rome Statute, the Court’s founding treaty. Over the years that followed, he supported the efforts of the international community and civil society to bring the Court into existence through the  negotiation, adoption and entry into force of the Rome Statute.
In 2006, former President Robinson was elected to serve on the Board of Directors of the Trust Fund for Victims, which offers reparations for victims of crimes before the ICC. In recent years, he was active in campaigning for continued support for the Court, particularly among Latin American and Caribbean States. As a long-lasting tribute to President Robinson, the ICC’s main Courtroom is named in his honour.
Though the world has lost a true pioneer of global justice, his legacy remains in the realm of international criminal law, as the International Criminal Court continues to strive for universal protection for all people against genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity.

 
Amnesty International releases Manual to fight injustice PDF Print E-mail
SITUATIONS AND CASES - SITUATIONS ET AFFAIRES
Wednesday, 09 April 2014 11:13

A new resource to arm lawyers, defendants and the judiciary with the tools to fight against unfair trials and injustice is published by Amnesty International today.
A practical guide on the internationally agreed standards for fair criminal proceedings, the second edition of the Fair Trial Manual is the first update in more than 15 years.
“The Fair Trial Manual is essential reading for anyone having to battle against injustice,” said Michael Bochenek, Senior Director of International Law and Policy at Amnesty International.
“It provides practical guidance on which corners prosecutors must never try to cut. In extreme cases, it can also help to expose politically motivated show trials for what they really are. Even in the most oppressive states, where the judiciary is little more than a puppet for political masters, highlighting abuses can and does achieve results.”
The Manual will be used by a wide range of people assessing the fairness of an individual criminal case or criminal justice system. These include:
lawyers and judges acting in criminal proceedings
trial observers, legislators and human rights educators
human rights monitors working to assist efforts to re-establish the rule of law and in complex post-conflict situations
The second edition of the Manual, published by popular demand, reflects the significant changes to the global legal and political context since the first edition. Many new standards have been adopted, for example, on women deprived of their liberty and the right to access legal aid. It also reflects the growing recognition that fairness includes regard for the rights of victims and that many fair trial rights apply at all times and in all circumstances, even during states of emergency and armed conflicts.
The Manual includes dedicated chapters on death penalty cases, trials in armed conflict and fair trial rights of children.

 
Trial Chamber defines scope for trial in Case 002/02 PDF Print E-mail
COURTS - EXTRAORDINARY CHAMBERS IN THE COURTS OF CAMBODIA
Tuesday, 08 April 2014 10:59

The Trial Chamber of the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) has issued a new severance decision which defines which alleged crime sites and factual allegations will be included in the trial in Case 002/02 against Khieu Samphan and Nuon Chea. Charges related to genocide, forced marriages and rape, treatment of Buddhists, internal purges, targeting of former Khmer Republic officials, four security centers, three worksites and one cooperative will form the basis for Case 002/02.
In determining whether to sever the trial, the Chamber evaluated different legitimate interests rooted in human rights and principles of efficiency. Important factors in this analysis included the potential prejudice to the Accused's rights, the efficiency and manageability of the proceedings, the desire to avoid inconsistencies between separate trials and the potential burden on witnesses. Another factor that was considered is whether severance is necessary to ensure at least a further portion of the charges are adjudicated within the lifespan of the Accused. In its decision, the Trial Chamber found that additional severance of Case 002 is in the interests of justice and does not impede unduly upon the rights of the Accused.
Having decided to sever the case, the Trial Chamber next defined the scope of the trial. In so doing it considered the requirements that the trial be fair and expeditious as well as "reasonably representative" of the entire Closing Order.  Having considered the submissions from the parties, the Trial Chamber decided that the following alleged crime sites and factual allegations will form the basis for Case 002/02:
Genocide against the Cham and the Vietnamese (excluding crimes against humanity committed by the Revolutionary Army of Kampuchea on Vietnamese territory);
Forced marriages and rape (nationwide);
Internal purges;
S-21 Security Centre; Kraing Ta Chan Security Centre, Au Kanseng Security Centre and Phnom Kraol Security Centre;
1st January Dam Worksite; Kampong Chhnang Airport Construction site, Trapeang Thma Dam Worksite;
Tram Kok Cooperative;
Treatment of Buddhists (limited to Tram Kok Cooperatives); and
Targeting of former Khmer Republic Officials (implementation limited to Tram Kok Cooperatives, 1st January Dam Worksite, S-21 Security Centre and Kraing Ta Chan Security Centre)
The parties will now be invited to file witness, expert and Civil Party lists, as well as a list of evidentiary documents the seek admitted into Case 002/02. Thereafter, the Trial Chamber will schedule an Initial Hearing.
Case 002/02 is the second case originating from the Closing Order in Case 002.  On 22 September 2011, the Trial Chamber issued an order severing the proceedings in Case 002 into two or more cases. The first severed case, Case 002/01, focused primarily on alleged crimes against humanity related to the forced movement of the population from Phnom Penh and later from other regions (phases one and two), and alleged execution of Khmer Republic soldiers at Tuol Po Chrey execution site immediately after the Khmer Rouge takeover in 1975. Closing Statements in Case 002/01 concluded on 31 October 2013, and the Trial Chamber is working towards issuing the verdict in this trial in the second quarter of 2014.

 
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