Sang headed to ICC but not without a fight

March 9, 2011 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 9 – Radio presenter Joshua arap Sang will heed summons issued against him by the International Criminal Court but he plans to challenge the order before the appeals section of the court.

His lawyer Kimutai Bosek said they are not only dissatisfied with the ruling that was issued on Tuesday, but also the conduct of the pre-trial chamber judges.

"These judges are behaving like political activists as opposed to judicial officers," Mr Bosek said.

The lawyer, whose client is among six Kenyans directed to appear before the ICC on April 7 over Kenya\’s 2008 post election violence, said Mr Sang should not be seen to be disobeying the court.

"We are not disobeying the court summons but we will challenge it before the appellate arm. My client is innocent and will challenge the prosecutor\’s allegations," the lawyer said.

Mr Sang argues that Prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo presented his case before the pre-trial chamber before interrogating him, and the judges further publicised their ruling before serving him.

"The verdict appeared to be known by the whole world before our client whose fate they (judges) were determining. These are the same people who lashed at the prosecutor for seeking the court\’s permission in public. These are double standards!" he protested.

"We were ready and willing to have our client questioned and interrogated on all manner of allegations that he may have against him but he (prosecutor) has ignored to do that."

Mr Sang has been indicted together with William Ruto and Henry Kosgey with crimes against humanity for murder, forcible transfer and persecution. The chamber found reasonable grounds to believe that Mr Ruto and Mr Kosgey are criminally responsible as indirect co-perpetrators.

The chamber, however, found that there are not reasonable grounds to believe that Mr Sang is an indirect co-perpetrator, because his contribution to the commission of the crimes was not essential.

Instead, the chamber said in its ruling that it was satisfied that there were reasonable grounds to believe that Mr Sang otherwise contributed to the commission of the crimes in accordance with article 25(3)(d) of the Rome Statute. As to the count of torture, the chamber found reasonable grounds to believe that acts of torture were committed.

Mr Sang previously asked the court to give access and disclosure of any material, submissions or filings generally made by any other participant in the proceedings relating to the Kenyan situation with leave to participate in such other fillings.

But all his pleas were dismissed by the court.

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