Live: Dominic Ongwen trial

Monday January 26 2015

 

4:00pm: First appearance of Ongwen before the ICC Single Judge Trendafilova of Pre-Trial Chamber.

4:01pm: Dominic Ongwen dressed very smartly in black suit and white shirt, he has been charged with three counts of crimes against humanity and four counts of war crimes allegedly committed in 2004 in Uganda while he was with the LRA.

4:10pm: Judge Trendafilova states that Ongwen was provided with warrant of arrest in two languages: English and Acholi.

Judge Trendafilova next asks Ongwen whether has been informed of the charges alleged against him by Office of the Prosecutor. Ongwen replies: "I have been informed".

4:13pm: Judge mentions that Ongwen met with his duty counsel in Bangui prior to transfer to ICC: "Ongwen was informed by his duty counsel Ms Cisse and representatives of the Registry in The Hague of his rights as suspect" She says before turning to Ongwen and asking if he has been informed of his rights. Ongwen replies: "Correctly, I have been informed."

4:20pm: Ongwen is then given his first chance to address court: He says he was abducted by the LRA when he was 14, hence he is also a victim.

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Judge Trendafilova replies to Ongwen: "Mr Ongwen you will be held innocent until proven guilty beyond reasonable doubt at trial"

4:35pm: Judge Trendafilova next discusses issues impacting date for confirmation of charges hearing : These include the right of adequate time to prepare defence, right to be tried without undue delay and other issues. She then sets provisional date of 24 Aug 2015 for confirmation of charges hearing in Ongwen case. Neither Prosecution nor Duty Counsel for Ongwen made objections to date.

Next, a status conference is scheduled for 28 Jan 2015 at 14h00 in closed session in the presence of the Prosecutor only. Duty counsel Cisse asked to take the floor before the judge closes the proceedings.

4:52pm: Ms Cisse: I want to underline the fact that the English knowledge of Mr Ongwen is basic only. Ongwen should have ASAP translation into Acholi of all documents and evidence and if possible audio transcription.

4:53pm: Judge Trendafilova: We will issue a decision in relation to translation quite soon. Core documents are translated already.

4:54pm: Judge Trendafilova thanks all those present in the courtroom and interpreters, and closes the hearing on initial appearance of Ongwen .

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