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Legal Eye eLetter

Special Issue #1 — February 2013

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The Women's Initiatives for Gender Justice is an international women's human rights organisation that advocates for gender justice through the International Criminal Court (ICC) and through domestic mechanisms, including peace negotiations and justice processes. We work with women most affected by the conflict situations under investigation by the ICC.

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Dear Friends,

Welcome to a Special Issue of Legal Eye on the ICC, a regular eLetter from the Women's Initiatives for Gender Justice. In the Legal Eye, you will find summaries and gender analysis of judicial decisions and other legal developments at the International Criminal Court (ICC), and discussion of legal issues arising from victims' participation before the Court, particularly as these issues relate to the prosecution of gender-based crimes in each of the Situations under investigation by the ICC. The Court currently has eight Situations under investigation: Uganda, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Darfur (Sudan), the Central African Republic (CAR), Kenya, Libya, Côte d'Ivoire and Mali.

In addition to the Legal Eye on the ICC, we also produce Women's Voices, a regular eLetter providing updates and analysis on political developments, the pursuit of justice and accountability, the participation of women in peace talks and reconciliation efforts from the perspective of women's rights activists within armed conflict situations, specifically those countries under investigation by the ICC.

More information about the work of the Women's Initiatives for Gender Justice and previous issues of Women's Voices and Legal Eye on the ICC can be found on our website at www.iccwomen.org.

This Special Issue is the first in a series of Special Issues reporting on the second trial Judgement handed down by Trial Chamber II in the case against Mathieu Ngudjolo Chui (Ngudjolo) on 18 December 2012. In this first Special Issue, we discuss the Chamber's judgement acquitting Ngudjolo of all charges charged by the Prosecution, focusing on the Chamber’s findings in relation to the Prosecution investigation, the credibility of witnesses and Ngudjolo’s alleged responsibility. In the second Special Issue, we will analyse the proceedings regarding Ngudjolo’s release following his acquittal as well as Judge Van den Wyngaert’s separate and concurring opinion on Article 25(3)(a).


Mali :: Office of the Prosecutor announces opening of investigations in ICC's eighth Situation

On 16 January 2013, ICC Chief Prosecutor Bensouda announced that, pursuant to Article 53(1), her Office had formally opened an investigation into alleged crimes committed in Mali since January 2012.[1] The announcement by the Prosecutor followed a referral of the situation by the Government of Mali in July 2012.[2]

Prosecutor Bensouda indicated that her Office’s investigation will focus on crimes committed in the three northern regions of Mali. Jointly with the announcement opening the investigation, the Prosecutor publicly released her Article 53(1) Report on the Situation in Mali.[3] The report indicates that the Situation in Mali is marked by two main events: first, the emergence of a rebellion in the North on or around 17 January 2012, which resulted in Northern Mali being seized by armed groups; and, second, a coup d’état by a military junta on 22 March 2012, which led to the removal of President Toure shortly before scheduled presidential elections. The report identifies the main actors to the conflict as government forces, the Mouvement national de libération de l’Anzawad (MNLA), al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), Ansar Dine, and the Mouvement pour l’unicité et le jihad en Afrique de l’Ouest (MUJAO).

The Prosecutor announced that, following an assessment of the evidence, her Office had concluded that there was a reasonable basis to believe that the following war crimes had been committed in Mali since January 2012: murder;[4] mutilation, cruel treatment and torture;[5] intentionally directing attacks against protected objects;[6] the passing of sentences and the carrying out of executions without previous judgment pronounced by a regularly constituted court;[7] pillaging;[8] and rape.[9] The Office of the Prosecutor also indicated that it would continue to investigate allegations relating to the use, conscription, and enlistment of children.[10] The Prosecutor did not find a reasonable basis to believe that crimes against humanity under Article 7 had been committed, but indicated that this assessment could be revisited in the future following further analysis and investigation.

In her Report, the Prosecutor referenced information from international organisations and non-governmental organisations indicating that, following the takeover of the North by armed groups, more than 50 cases of rape or attempted rape were recorded, mostly in the period from March to May 2012, in Gao, Timbuktu, Niafounke, villages around Dire, and in the Menaka region.

Following reports of abuse committed by the Malian forces in the region, in a statement on 28 January 2013 Prosecutor Bensouda urged the Malian authorities ‘to put an immediate stop to the alleged abuses and on the basis of the principle of complementarity, to investigate and prosecute those responsible for the alleged crimes’.[11] The Prosecutor reminded all parties to the conflict that her Office has jurisdiction over all serious crimes committed within the territory of Mali from January 2012 onwards, and that all those alleged to be responsible for serious crimes must be held accountable.

The Situation in Mali has been assigned to Pre-Trial Chamber II, composed of Judge Ekaterina Trendafilova (Bulgaria), Judge Hans-Peter Kaul (Germany) and Judge Cuno Tarfusser (Italy). The same Pre-Trial Chamber has also been assigned to the Uganda, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Darfur (Sudan), the Central African Republic and Kenya Situations.

■ Read the announcement by Prosecutor Bensouda opening the investigation

■ Read the 'Article 53(1) Report on the Situation in Mali' by the Office of the Prosecutor


DRC :: Trial Chamber II acquits Ngudjolo in second trial judgement at the ICC

On 18 December 2012, in the ICC's second trial judgement, Trial Chamber II[12] acquitted Mathieu Ngudjolo Chui (Ngudjolo) of all crimes charged by the Prosecution in the case The Prosecutor v. Mathieu Ngudjolo Chui.[13] Ngudjolo was tried jointly with Germain Katanga (Katanga), constituting the Court's second trial, as well as the second case, after the Lubanga case, arising from the DRC Situation. It was the first case in which crimes of sexual violence had been charged.[14] The case centred on an attack on the village of Bogoro in the Ituri region by the Front de nationalistes et integrationnistes (FNI) and the Force de resistance patriotique en Ituri (FRPI) on 24 February 2003. Katanga and Ngudjolo were the alleged commanders of the FRPI and FNI, respectively. On 21 November 2012, Trial Chamber II severed the cases against Ngudjolo and Katanga.[15]

Ngudjolo was charged under Article 25(3)(a) of the Statute with seven counts of war crimes: rape, sexual slavery, wilful killings, directing attack against a civilian population, using children under the age of 15 to take active part in the hostilities, destruction of property, and pillaging.[16] He was also charged with three counts of crimes against humanity: rape, sexual slavery and murder.[17]

The trial judgement principally contained the Chamber's factual conclusions related to the totality of the evidence concerning the organisation and structure of the Lendu combatants from Bedu-Ezekere[18] within the relevant period, including Ngudjolo's role and function. While the Chamber affirmed that the events as alleged, including the crimes, had taken place,[19] it concluded that, in the absence of sufficient evidence, it could not find beyond a reasonable doubt that Ngudjolo was the lead commander of the Lendu combatants from Bedu-Ezekere at the time of the Bogoro attack, as charged by the Office of the Prosecutor. Similarly, while finding the use of child soldiers to be a generalised phenomenon in Ituri, and more specifically that child soldiers from Bedu-Ezekere had participated in the attack on Bogoro, the Chamber concluded that it did not have enough evidence to link Ngudjolo to this crime beyond a reasonable doubt.[20]

Although deciding to acquit Ngudjolo based on the absence of sufficient evidence to prove his criminal responsibility, the Chamber underscored that the failure to prove this allegation beyond a reasonable doubt did not call into question the alleged facts in the case. It stated: 'To declare that an accused is not guilty does not imply that the Chamber finds him innocent.'[21]

As the first cases to go to trial with charges of gender-based crimes, the trial against Ngudjolo and Katanga represented the first time at the ICC that victims/survivors of rape and sexual slavery were called by the Prosecution to testify about those crimes. Three witnesses who were victims of sexual violence gave extensive testimony, in both open and closed session, describing the multiple rapes to which they were subjected during the attack, and their abduction and rape after the attack.[22] In the closing arguments, the discussion of these charges centred on the credibility of the witnesses who had testified about their experiences of rape and sexual enslavement, the temporal scope of the charges and on the issue of cumulative charging.[23] In the final judgement, the Chamber made very limited findings concerning the sexual violence charges, but found that, as a factual matter, there was extensive evidence attesting to the commission of rape and sexual enslavement.[24]


Prosecution investigation and witness credibility

Similar to the trial judgement in the Lubanga case by Trial Chamber I,[25] Trial Chamber II dedicated a portion of the Ngudjolo judgement to the Prosecution investigation and to the credibility of Prosecution witnesses. The Chamber acknowledged that the Prosecution investigation of the Katanga & Ngudjolo case, like that of the Lubanga case, was one of the Prosecution’s first, and that it was conducted in an insecure region with little infrastructure.[26] It recognised the difficulty in finding witnesses who were able and unafraid to testify, as well as in gathering reliable documentary evidence.[27] Yet, the Chamber underscored the importance of conducting investigations closer in time and place to the events in question, noting, for example, that the earliest documents in the case file were dated from 2006, three years after the facts under investigation.[28]

The Chamber identified several important weaknesses in the Prosecution's case. First, the Chamber noted that it would have been desirable for the Prosecutor, prior to the commencement of the trial, to have travelled to the places in question.[29] Notably, the Trial Chamber had travelled to the DRC on 18 and 19 January 2012, visiting Bunia, Aveba, Zumbe, Kambutso and Bogoro.[30] This was the first time an ICC Trial Chamber had visited the site of alleged crimes. As described by the Chamber, the site visit enabled it to obtain a sense of the environment and the geography, and to verify specific points mentioned by witnesses and the accused.[31] The Chamber referred to its findings based on the site visit repeatedly throughout the judgement, particularly in its evaluation of witness credibility. It listed several examples of how knowledge of Zumbe and Kumbutso as well as the distances between these locations and Bogoro, would have aided in the clarification of testimony and a clearer appreciation of the evidence.[32]

The Chamber also stated that it would have been desirable for the Prosecution to have called as witnesses several commanders who played a central role prior to, during and after the attacks.[33] Specifically, it indicated that the testimony of military officials such as Colonel Aguru, captain Blaise Koka and commanders Boba Boba, Yuda and Dark would have provided important information on the preparation of the attack, how it unfolded and on the forces that remained in Bogoro after the battle.[34] It also suggested that it would have been desirable to have obtained a statement from Ngudjolo during the investigation phase as it would have enabled the Chamber to have confronted him with prior statements.[35]

The Chamber further suggested that the Prosecution should have engaged in a more 'attentive' analysis of the civil status and educational history of its alleged former child soldier witnesses.[36] It noted that it was the Defence teams that had provided a large number of civil status documents and educational records for Prosecution witnesses, which had enabled a more precise determination of the witnesses' ages and the locations in which they had studied. It also underscored the fact that the Prosecution never challenged the authenticity of such documents, which had carried significant weight in the Chamber's assessment of the credibility of the Prosecution witnesses' testimony.[37] It stated, 'without doubt the Prosecution could have gone deeper into these issues'.[38]

After an extensive analysis of their testimonies, the Trial Chamber determined that the Prosecution's three key witnesses, Witnesses 250, 279 and 280, were not credible and thus could not be relied upon for the purpose of this case. All three witnesses had claimed to be former child soldiers. Based on contradictions in their testimonies and documentary evidence produced by the Defence demonstrating their actual ages, scholastic records and whereabouts at the time, the Chamber found that the witnesses lacked credibility in their testimonies about their ages, school attendance and conscription. Significantly, the Prosecution had relied almost entirely on the testimony of these three witnesses to demonstrate Ngudjolo's authority as lead commander of the Lendu militia, and thus the finding that these witnesses were not credible led to the Chamber's decision to acquit the accused.

In the trial judgement in the Lubanga case, Trial Chamber I had similarly found that 11 alleged former child soldier witnesses for the Prosecution gave contradictory evidence concerning their ages, school attendance, the identity and well-being of family members, or the circumstances of their recruitment, with one exception, and were thus not credible and could not be relied upon in that case.[39] While Trial Chamber I in Lubanga had also considered evidence concerning the influence that Prosecution intermediaries may have had on witnesses as a significant factor, the role of intermediaries was not similarly highlighted by Trial Chamber II in the judgement. Although the credibility of Prosecution witnesses in the Ngudjolo case was, in part, attributed by the Defence to their relationship to Prosecution intermediaries, including those at issue in the Lubanga case, Trial Chamber II declined to include a discussion of these linkages within the judgement, and it based its credibility findings on the contradictory testimonies of the witnesses in question and on the contravening evidence presented by the Defence.


Events in Bogoro

Despite its acquittal of Ngudjolo, the Trial Chamber affirmed that the events in Bogoro and the crimes confirmed by the Pre-Trial Chamber had occurred. At the time of the attack, Bogoro, a town in the Ituri region of north-eastern DRC and strategically located between Bunia, capital of Ituri, and the Ugandan border, was under the control of, and was the location of a military camp of, the Union des patriotes congolais (UPC), a predominantly Hema militia of which Thomas Lubanga Dyilo was President.[40] The attack took place in the context of ongoing fighting between the Lendu, Ngiti and Hema ethnic groups in Ituri. In the trial judgement, the Chamber found that the attack started at dawn, between 4 or 5 o'clock in the morning, when the villagers were awoken by bullets. It noted that both UPC and civilian witnesses described a large number of assailants, who came from all directions.[41] The Chamber found that the assailants arrived by diverse routes leading to the village, including from the direction of neighbouring villages Zumbe and Lagura, forcing the UPC and accompanying villagers to flee through a corridor that led to Bunia. It noted that several witnesses identified the assailants as Ngiti and Lendu based on language (Kilendu or Kingiti). It found that commander Kute (Lendu) was among the assailants on the day of the attack. The Chamber found that the UPC camp fell before noon.[42] The Chamber was unable to conclude, based on the evidence, the exact number of assailants or the exact time frame in which the combatants from Bedu-Ezekere took part in the attack.[43] It was also unable to determine the precise number of civilians killed during the attack.[44]

The Chamber found that the assailants were armed with machetes, arrows, knives and swords (armes blanches), and that some carried fire arms; some wore military uniforms, others were dressed as civilians. It found that there were women among the attackers, as well as young combatants, notably among the Lendu, who were armed and fought with the adults. It found that child soldiers killed villagers, gashed people with machetes and participated in pillaging.[45]

The Chamber recounted victim-witness testimony to find that at the beginning of the attack, numerous villagers left their homes, seeking refuge, some in the Institute of Bogoro, a former school that was at the centre of the UPC camp; others in the bush. The judgement notes that those who fled to the bush were identified and killed.[46] It found that some women were raped during the attack, while others were taken into captivity and subsequently raped.[47] The Chamber further found that houses and public and private buildings were destroyed and burned, including churches and schools, and that goods were taken away. It noted that several witnesses identified the pillagers as Lendu and Ngiti, testifying that the goods were carried away in the direction of Bedu-Ezekere.[48]


Ngudjolo's criminal responsibility

In light of the forthcoming decision in the Katanga case, which will also be based on the evidence presented at their joint trial, Trial Chamber II addressed only those issues necessary for determining the culpability of Ngudjolo.[49] The Chamber thus analysed the evidence as it pertained to Ngudjolo's authority over the Bedu-Ezekere combatants. Specifically, it examined the organisation and structure of the combatants, and Ngudjolo's role and functions before, during and after the attack. As noted above, the Prosecution relied on the testimony of Witnesses 250, 279 and 280, none of whom the Chamber found reliable, to sustain its allegation that Ngudjolo was the head of the Lendu combatants at the time of the attack.[50]

One of the most contested issues in the case involved a shift in the Prosecution case in the terminology used to describe Ngudjolo’s position at the time of the attack in February 2003. The Prosecution shifted from asserting that Ngudjolo was the lead commander of the FNI at the time of the Bogoro attack, as presented to and confirmed by the Pre-Trial Chamber, to sustaining in its concluding brief that Ngudjolo acted as the head of the Lendu militia of Bedu-Ezekere. This change in terminology reflects the ambiguity about the name of the Lendu militia at the time of the attack. However, the Trial Chamber found that the Prosecution change in terminology did not affect the basis of the confirmed charges, the essential facts and circumstances of which the accused was aware from the beginning of the trial.[51]

Regarding the organisational structure of the Lendu militia from Bedu-Ezekere, the Prosecution had alleged that a youth auto-defence movement grew into an organised military structure with a well-defined chain of command that was not limited to self-defence, but also launched attacks.[52] However, the Chamber was unable to conclude beyond a reasonable doubt that the youth auto-defence movement of Bedu-Ezekere developed into a hierarchical military structure with a clearly defined chain of command as alleged by the Prosecution. Rather, it found beyond a reasonable doubt that at some time between 2001 and 2003, the Lendu combatants were regrouped into specific positions with commanders who were charged not only with self-defence, but also with launching attacks.[53]

Specifically, the Prosecution had relied on the testimony of its three key witnesses[54] to assert that: there were numerous combatants; military camps were established and led by commanders; the Lendu militia had disciplinary and reporting procedures, and conducted military training and parades; arms and munitions were distributed; and, communication existed between the camps. Relying on the evidence presented by the Defence, the Chamber found that there were at least 500 combatants, that the three main camps were in Zumbe, Ladile and Lagura and that they were led by the commanders Nyunye, Boba-Boba and Kute, respectively.[55] However, although the Chamber affirmed the existence of these military camps, it found that it was not possible to conclude, based on the evidence that it had found credible, that the camps were composed of combatants under a hierarchical military structure. Specifically, it stated that it did not have evidence enabling it to conclude that the Lendu combatants 'were organised within a single structure divided into sectors, battalions, companies, squads and sections' as found by the Pre-Trial Chamber in the confirmation decision. In addition, the Chamber was not able to make any finding on the exact role played by the above-mentioned commanders.[56] Rather, the Chamber simply concluded that there were military-type positions in Bedu-Ezekere prior to 24 February 2003.[57]

The Chamber also concluded that it did not have enough evidence to establish the existence of disciplinary and reporting procedures, or the existence of parades and military trainings in the camps.[58] The Chamber concluded, based on the testimony of several witnesses, including Prosecution witnesses, that the Lendu militia had additional means of communication beyond horns, whistles and drums, as had been argued by the Defence, including mobile phones.[59] Finally, on the basis of extensive witness testimony, including Prosecution witnesses, the Chamber found that the Lendu militia had the capacity to launch offensive attacks as of 2001.[60]

Regarding Ngudjolo's role and functions within the Lendu militia, the Chamber examined the evidence related to Ngudjolo's social status, his activities and training as a nurse, his military training in the civil guard, and his role and functions before, during and after the Bogoro attack. The Prosecution had relied on the testimony of its three key witnesses, as well as Witness 219, none of whom the Chamber had found credible, to sustain that Ngudjolo was the lead commander in Bedu-Ezekere at the time of the Bogoro attack. The Defence had argued that Ngudjolo was a nurse working in Kambutso on the day of the attack, assisting with a birth.[61]

While the fact that Ngudjolo worked as a nurse was not contested by the parties, his activities between September 2002 and June 2003 were.[62] The Chamber noted that several witnesses confirmed Ngudjolo's presence at the Kambutso health centre on the day of the attack, but stressed that it did not find these witnesses credible.[63] Further, while the Chamber accepted the Defence version of the events, placing him at the health centre, it found that his presence in Kambutso did not affect his criminal responsibility, as he could have been simultaneously a nurse and a military chief.[64]

Concerning Ngudjolo's position prior to the Bogoro attack, the Chamber noted that a large majority of the witnesses who testified on this issue had based their knowledge on hearsay. In other words, the Chamber found that almost all of the witnesses who had testified that Ngudjolo was the chief of the Lendu militia, including two victims, had simply heard that Ngudjolo was the lead commander of the Lendu militia, and provided no detail as to the manner in which he had exercised his authority. It thus accorded this testimony little probative value. The Chamber could not exclude the possibility that these witnesses had associated Ngudjolo's rise in military status at the end of March 2003 to the position he had occupied before the attack in February of that year.[65]

Ngudjolo's rise within the ranks of the FNI-FRPI alliance after the Bogoro attack was also a critical issue in the case. For the Prosecution, Ngudjolo's elevated role and functions after the Bogoro attack were in continuity with the period prior to the attack, and constituted circumstantial evidence of his position of authority before the Bogoro attack. The Defence had portrayed Ngudjolo's rise within the military in the period after the Bogoro attack to a mix of 'chance' and 'careerist opportunism'.[66] The Chamber confirmed Ngudjolo's participation in important political and military events in Ituri after 6 March 2003, relying extensively on video evidence. For example, the Chamber considered Ngudjolo's signature on the cessation of hostilities agreement of 18 March 2003, convened under the auspices of MONUC, which he had signed as a colonel, representing the Lendu from Djugu.[67] The Chamber noted that other well-known figures, such as the customary chief of Bedu-Ezekere and military commander Boba Boba, did not sign the accord, thus demonstrating Ngudjolo's authority. However, it could not infer from his signature on the document that he had exercised such functions as of 2002.[68] The Chamber also considered Ngudjolo's participation in the FNI-FRPI alliance, from 18 March until October 2003, as deputy commander in charge of operations, (chef d'état-major adjoint chargé des opérations), during which time he directed three brigades.[69] The Chamber found that Ngudjolo's post in the alliance demonstrated recognition of his military authority as well as his military competence.[70] In contrast, although the evidence revealed that the Lendu militia participated in the attacks on Mandro and Bunia on 4 and 6 March 2003, respectively, the Chamber could not find beyond a reasonable doubt that Ngujdolo had led those attacks.[71] Although Ngudjolo was not charged with crimes relating to those attacks, the Prosecution had introduced evidence relating to those attacks to support its arguments about Ngudjolo’s military position at the time of the attack on Bogoro.

The Trial Chamber found that it could not infer from the evidence concerning Ngudjolo's participation in high-level activities in March 2003 that he was effectively the lead commander of the Lendu combatants from Bedu-Ezekere at the time of the Bogoro attack.[72] It noted that it had no reliable evidence prior to 18 March 2003, the date of signing of the Ituri Peace Accord, that Ngudjolo was lead commander. It thus could not exclude that he had insinuated himself into the political-military context after the attack on Bogoro.[73] Furthermore, the Chamber underscored that it had no credible evidence that Ngudjolo gave orders and military directives, took measures to ensure that they were respected and engaged in disciplinary procedures or imposed sanctions.[74]

As noted above, the Chamber concluded that the presence of child soldiers among combatants in Ituri during the relevant period was a generalised phenomenon, including in Djugu. It also found that children under the age of 15 from Bedu-Ezekere, some carrying spears and machetes, were present at the Bogoro attack. However, the Chamber found that it did not have sufficient evidence demonstrating the provision of military training for children on the order of the accused, their use by Ngudjolo as body guards or for any other purpose before, during or after the Bogoro attack. Thus, it could not, beyond a reasonable doubt, link Ngudjolo to the presence of children at the Bogoro attack.[75]

Judge Van den Wyngaert issued a concurring opinion on the mode of responsibility adopted by Pre-Trial Chamber I in the decision confirming the charges. A more detailed analysis of her concurring opinion on the interpretation of Article 25(3)(a) will be provided in the next Special Issue of the Legal Eye on the ICC eLetter.

■ Read the Statement of the Women’s Initiatives for Gender Justice on the Ngudjolo acquittal

■ Read the trial judgement acquitting Ngudjolo

■ For more background about the case against Ngudjolo see the Gender Report Card 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008

■ For a detailed description of the closing arguments in the case against Katanga and Ngudjolo see the Gender Report Card 2012

■ Read the third Special Issue of the Legal Eye on the ICC eLetter on Prosecution investigation and use of intermediaries in the Lubanga case




1   ICC Prosecutor opens investigation into war crimes in Mali: “The legal requirements have been met. We will investigate”’, OTP Press Release, 16 January 2013.
2   ‘ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda on the Malian State referral of the situation in Mali since January 2012’, OTP Press Release, 18 July 2012.
3   Article 53(1) Report on the Situation in Mali’, Office of the Prosecutor, 16 January 2013. While the Office of the Prosecutor is not required to make public its report when acting pursuant to a referral under Article 53(1), the Prosecutor indicated that her Office ‘decided to do so in the interests of promoting clarity with respect to its statutory activities and decisions’.
4   Article 8(2)(e)(i).
5   Article 8(2)(c)(i).
6   Article 8(2)(e)(iv).
7   Article 8(2)(c)(iv).
8   Article 8(2)(e)(v).
9   Article 8(2)(e)(vi).
10   Article 8(2)(e)(vii).
11   'Statement by ICC Prosecutor concerning Mali’, Office of the Prosecutor, 28 January 2013.
12 Trial Chamber II was composed of Presiding Judge Bruno Cotte (France), Judge Fatoumata Dembele Diarra (Mali) and Judge Christine Van den Wyngaert (Belgium).
13   ICC-01/04-02/12-3.
14   As indicated below, both Katanga and Ngudjolo were charged with rape and sexual slavery.
15   ICC-01/04-01/07-3319. The cases were joined on 10 March 2008. ICC-01/04-01/07-257. Prior to his transfer into ICC custody on 18 October 2007, Katanga had been held in detention at the central prison in Makala in the DRC since 9 March 2007. Ngudjolo was arrested in the DRC and transferred into the custody of the Court in February 2008.
16  Articles 8(2)(b)(xxii); 8(2)(a)(i); 8(2)(b)(i); 8(2)(b)(xxvi); 8(2)(b)(xii); and 8(2)(b)(xvi).
17   Articles 7(1)(g) and 7(1)(a).
18   As described in greater detail below, although the Prosecution had initially argued that Ngudjolo was the Commander-in-Chief of the FNI, the evidence presented during trial revealed that the FNI was officially created at a later date. Consequently, the judgement reflected the Prosecution closing arguments, which referred to the Lendu combatants from Bedu-Ezekere. ICC-01/04-02/12-3, paras 347-351.
19   Specifically concerning the sexual violence charges, the Chamber found, as a factual matter, that there was extensive evidence attesting to the commission of rape and sexual enslavement. ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 338. See Gender Report Card 2010, p 162-163. See also 'Statement by the Women's Initiatives for Gender Justice on the Opening of the ICC trial of Germain Katanga and Mathieu Ngudjolo Chui', CICC Press Conference, 23 November 2009, available at: http://www.iccwomen.org/news/docs/Katanga-Statement.pdf.
20   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 516.
21   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 36.
22   For a detailed summary of the testimony on gender-based crimes presented by the Prosecution witnesses, see Gender Report Card 2010, p 165-176. Three additional Prosecution witnesses addressed rape, sexual slavery and forced marriage in the course of their testimony. See Gender Report Card 2011, p 226-228.
At the start of the trial in November 2009, the Women’s Initiatives expressed concern about the sufficiency of the evidence presented with respect to gender-based crimes at the pre-trial stage, particularly about the relatively small witness pool for the sexual violence charges in this case. Women’s Initiatives for Gender Justice, ‘Statement by the Women’s Initiatives for Gender Justice on the Opening of the ICC Trial of Germain Katanga and Mathieu Ngudjolo Chui’, 23 November 2009. See further Gender Report Card 2008, p 47-48. In 2006 and 2007, the Women's Initiatives interviewed 112 women victims/survivors of sexual violence in Eastern DRC, who described horrific incidents of individual rape, gang rape and sexual slavery. Approximately 30 of the interviewees attributed these alleged crimes to the FNI and FRPI.
23   For a more detailed analysis and summary of the closing arguments in this case see Gender Report Card 2012, p 224-247.
24   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 338.
25   ICC-01/04-01/06-2842, paras 124-177; see also Gender Report Card 2012, p 138-145.
26   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 115.
27   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 115.
28   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 117.
29   In the trial judgement, the Chamber stated as follows: ‘De même, pour la Chambre, il aurait été souhaitable que le Procureur puisse se rendre, avant que ne commencent les débats sur le fond, dans les localités où résidaient les accusés et qui auraient servi de cadre aux préparatifs de l'attaque lancée contre Bogoro.’ In a footnote, the Chamber added: ‘La Chambre a eu connaissance de la visite que M. Moreno Ocampo, alors Procureur de la Cour, a effectuée à Zumbe le 10 juillet 2009. Elle relève toutefois que celle-ci s'inscrivait dans le cadre d'un déplacement qu'il réalisait sur le territoire de la RDC et qu'il ne s'agissait pas d'un acte d'enquête au sens judiciaire du terme.’ ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 118, fn 269.
30   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, paras 22, 68-69, noting the Registry's report on the trip, ICC-01/04-01/07-3234.
31   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 70.
32   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 118.
33   Within this framework, the Defence had further argued that the Prosecution had failed to fulfil its obligation to investigate both incriminating and exonerating evidence and a lack of impartiality. ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 98.
34   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 119.
35   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 120.
36   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 121.
37   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 121.
38   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 123.
39   See further ICC-01/04-01/06-2842, paras 480, 481. For more information about the role of Prosecution intermediaries in the Lubanga trial, see the Gender Report Card 2010, 2011, 2012 and Special Issue of the Legal Eye on the ICC eLetter on Prosecution investigation and use of intermediaries in the Lubanga case available here.
40   Thomas Lubanga Dyilo was convicted of the crimes of the enlistment, conscription and active use of children under the age of 15 in hostilities by Trial Chamber I on 14 March 2012. ICC-01/04-01/06-2842.
41   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 326.
42   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, paras 322-323, 327-329, 337.
43   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 336.
44   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, paras 320-321.
45   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, paras 324-325.
46   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, paras 330-332.
47   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, paras 333, 338.
48   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, paras 334-335, 338.
49   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 109.
50   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, paras 342-344.
51   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, paras 347-351.
52   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 371.
53   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 404.
54   The Prosecution also relied on Witness 219, whom the Chamber also found to be unreliable.
55   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, paras, 376-377. 386.
56   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 388.
57   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 389.
58   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, paras 390, 393.
59   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 396.
60   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, paras 398-403.
61   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, paras 405-407, 417.
62   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 415.
63   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, paras 419-422.
64   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, paras 423-424. In this regard, the Chamber noted that other Lendu commanders had medical experience, including commanders Bahati and Boba Boba.
65   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, paras 432-439, 496.
66   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 444.
67   Defence Witness D03-11, president and founder of the FNI, signed as representative of the FNI. ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 464.
68   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 467. The Ngudjolo Defence had argued that the accused had given himself the title of colonel, reflecting his ambition, but that he signed simply as a member of the territory in question and was not a member of a militia. ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 466.
69   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, paras 469, 470.
70   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 471.
71   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, paras 449-456.
72   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, paras 499, 501, 503.
73   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 500.
74   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 502.
75   ICC-01/04-02/12-3, para 516.


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