On 26 March 2013, Pre-Trial Chamber II of the International Criminal Court (ICC) set the date of the beginning of the confirmation of charges hearing in the case of The Prosecutor v. Bosco Ntaganda for 23 September 2013. This date was announced at the initial appearance of Bosco Ntaganda before the ICC.
During the initial appearance, in the presence of the Prosecution and the Defence, represented by Duty Counsel Mr Hassane Bel Lakhdar, Presiding Judge Ekaterina Trendafilova verified the identity of Mr Ntaganda and ensured that he was clearly informed of the charges brought against him and of his rights under the Rome Statute of the ICC.
A confirmation of charges hearing is held to determine whether there is sufficient evidence to establish substantial grounds to believe that the person committed each of the crimes charged. If the charges are confirmed, the Pre-Trial Chamber commits the case for trial before a Trial Chamber, which will conduct the subsequent phase of the proceedings: the trial.
On 22 March 2013, Bosco Ntaganda, Congolese citizen, surrendered himself voluntarily and is now in the ICC’s custody. The ICC issued two warrants of arrest for Bosco Ntaganda on 22 August 2006 and on 13 July 2012. As the former alleged Deputy Chief of the General Staff of the Forces Patriotiques pour la Libération du Congo [Patriotic Forces for the Liberation of Congo] (FPLC), Mr Ntaganda is suspected of seven counts of war crimes (enlistment of children under the age of 15, conscription of children under the age of 15, using children under the age of 15 to participate actively in hostilities; murder, attacks against the civilian population, rape and sexual slavery, and pillaging) and three counts of crimes against humanity (murder, rape and sexual slavery, and persecution) allegedly committed in Ituri (Democratic Republic of the Congo) between 1 September 2002 and the end of September 2003.
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For further information, please contact Fadi El Abdallah, Spokesperson and Head of Public Affairs Unit, International Criminal Court, by telephone at: +31 (0)70 515-9152 or +31 (0)6 46448938 or by e-mail at: email@example.com.