21 January 2013

Liberia: Taylor's Appeal Hearings Begin Tomorrow

Photo: RNW
Charles Taylor in court.

The Appeals Chamber of the Special Court for Sierra Leone will hear oral submissions from prosecution and defense lawyers in the Charles Taylor appeal tomorrow and Wednesday commencing at 10:00 am each day.

The Court's Public Information Section said several issues will be covered in the oral hearings, and the sequence in which the parties will address the Appeals Chamber.

According to the court, the Parties would be prepared to respond to oral questions posed by the Justices about issues raised in their Written Submissions; and that the parties will otherwise be asked to limit their submissions to the following issues pursuant to Rule 114 of the Rules of Procedure and Evidence:

(i) Whether the Trial Chamber correctly articulated the actus reus elements of aiding and abetting liability under customary international law.

The differences and similarities between aiding and abetting, instigation and ordering as forms of liability under Article 6(1) of the Statute.

Whether customary international law recognizes that certain forms of liability set forth in Article 6(1) of the Statute are more or less serious than other forms of liability for sentencing or other purposes.

(ii) Whether the Trial Chamber's findings meet the real standard of purpose.

(iii) Whether acts of assistance not "specifically directed" to the perpetration of a crime can substantially contribute to the commission of the crime for aiding and abetting liability. Whether the Trial Chamber's findings meet the "specific direction" standard.

(iv) Whether acts of assistance not to the crime "as such" can substantially contribute to the commission of the crime for aiding and abetting liability. Whether the Trial Chamber's findings meet the "as such" standard.

(v) Whether the sources of law identified in Rule 72 bis (ii) and (iii) establish that uncorroborated hearsay cannot be relied upon as the sole basis for specific incriminating findings of fact.

(vi) How the Appeals Chamber should apply existing jurisprudence relating to adjudicated facts under Rule 94(B) in the context of a defense motion for the admission of adjudicated facts following the close of the prosecution case.

Subject to adjustments where appropriate, the timetable for the Appeal Hearing shall be as follows:

Tuesday 22 January 2013

Morning: Prosecutor's submission on the stated issues

Afternoon: Taylor's submissions on the stated issues

Wednesday 23 January 2013

Morning: Prosecutor's Response; Taylor's Response

Afternoon: Prosecutor's Reply; Taylor's Reply.

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