Congolese warlord found guilty by ICC
July 9, 2019 | 1:06 PM
by Times News Service
Bosco Ntaganda during the delivering of the judgment of ICC Trial Chamber VI at the seat of the Court in The Hague (The Netherlands) on 8 July 2019 ©ICC-CPI

Amsterdam: A warlord from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) was found guilty by the International Criminal Courts (ICC) of war crimes and crimes against humanity.

Bosco Ntaganda was pronounced guilty beyond reasonable doubt on 18 charges committed between 2002-2003 in the DRC's province of Ituri.

He was found guilty by the ICC's Trial Chamber IV, which included Judge Robert Fremr, Presiding Judge, Judge Kuniko Ozaki and Judge Chang-ho Chung. Their verdict was announced at a public hearing in The Hague.

A total of 2,129 victims, represented by their legal counsel from the ICC Office for Public Counsel for the Victims, participated in the trial.

"In order to determine Mr Ntaganda's sentence in this case, the Chamber will receive submissions from the parties and participants regarding the possible sentence, and will schedule a separate hearing, to receive evidence and address matters related to sentencing. Pending the decision on sentencing, Mr Ntaganda continues to be detained," a media release by the ICC stated.

It added that "The parties (the Prosecution and Defence) may appeal the decision of conviction within thirty days. Issues related to the procedure for victims' reparations will be addressed in due course."

The ICC stated that Ntaganda's trial opened on September 2 2015 with closing statements being heard from 28-30 August 208. There were 248 hearings in which the chamber heard from 80 witnesses and experts called by the Office of the ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda, and 19 witnesses called by the Defence team led by Stephane Bourgone. in addition to three witnesses called by legal representatives of the victims and five victims themselves.

Ntanganda, nicknamed the "Terminator" handed himself to the US embassy in Kigali Rwanda on March 18 2013. He then requested to be transferred to the ICC in The Hague.

(With input from other agencies)

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