find the latest legal job
Senior Associate - Litigation & Dispute Resolution
Category: Litigation and Dispute Resolution | Location: Melbourne CBD & Inner Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· Come work for a firm ranked in Lawyers Weekly Top 25 Attraction Firms
View details
Associate - Workplace Relations & Safety
Category: Industrial Relations and Employment Law | Location: Brisbane CBD & Inner Suburbs Brisbane QLD
· Employer of choice · Strong team culture
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Banking and Finance Law | Location: All Perth WA
· Freelance opportunities through Vario from Pinsent Masons
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Other | Location: All Adelaide SA
· • Qualified lawyer with a strong academic background
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Other | Location: All Melbourne VIC
· • Qualified lawyer with a strong academic background
View details
New ICC hands down first sentence

New ICC hands down first sentence

The newly formed International Criminal Court has handed down its first sentence, while sending a strong message at the same time, says Amnesty International.

 

The newly formed International Criminal Court has handed down its first sentence, while sending a strong message at the same time, says Amnesty International.

Thomas Lubanga Dyilo has been given 14 years for recruiting and using child soldiers in armed conflict in the Court’s first sentence. This is a historic moment for international justice, Amnesty International said. 

The sentence takes into account that Lubanga has been in custody since his 2006 arrest. Prosecutors had originally asked for a 30-year sentence. 

“This first sentence is a historic moment. It puts the whole world on notice: anyone who recruits or uses children as soldiers faces trial and imprisonment,” said Michael Bochenek, Amnesty International’s director of law and policy.

“Today’s verdict demonstrates that the International Criminal Court is up and running.” 

The prosecution’s decision to limit the charges to conscription, enlistment, and use of child soldiers meant that the court could not consider allegations of other crimes committed by the FPLC under Lubanga Dyilo – including crimes of sexual violence – potentially denying justice and reparation to many more victims.   

The court did however add these crimes in March to the arrest warrant already issued for one of Lubanga’s deputies, Bosco Ntaganda who is currently leading the armed group, M23 in North Kivu province, Eastern Congo. 

“It’s critical that defendants in subsequent trials face a full charge sheet rather than one reduced for expediency,” Bochenek said. 

Lubanga was first arrested in March 2006, for crimes he committed in 2002-2003 when he forcibly conscripted child soldiers into the FPLC (Forces Patriotiques pour la Libération du Congo).  The trial was scheduled to start in 2007, but finally got under way in 2009, with a final conviction in March 2012. 

Thomas Lubanga was the alleged founder and president of the Union of the Congolese Patriots (UPC) and commander in chief of its armed wing, the FPLC. The FPLC was involved in numerous human rights abuses, including the abduction and use of children as soldiers.  The recruitment and use of children in armed conflict by foreign and Congolese armed groups continues. The Congolese national army has also used child soldiers. Bosco’s M23 forces continue to forcibly recruit civilians including children. Amnesty International received several reports of civilians being killed after they refused to join the M23. 

Prosecutors also failed to recover any assets linked to Lubanga to help pay for his crimes, so the burden of payment will fall on the ICC ‘Trust Fund for Victims’ and state governments.   
 

 

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

New ICC hands down first sentence
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
microphone
Oct 20 2017
Podcast: One of law’s most infamous alumni – in conversation with Julian Morrow
In this episode of The Lawyers Weekly Show, Melissa Coade is joined by The Chaser’s Julian Morrow....
protest
Oct 20 2017
High Court overturns ‘excessive’ anti-protest legislation
Bob Brown’s recent victory in the High Court over the Tasmanian government was a win for fundament...
Blocked
Oct 20 2017
Changes to Australian citizenship laws blocked
Attempts to beef up the requirements to obtain Australian citizenship were thwarted this week, after...
APPOINTMENTS
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
opinion
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
Help
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...