The UN-backed special court set up to try suspects indicted for war crimes in Sierra Leone on Tuesday found three senior members of the country's former Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC) guilty of contempt for tampering with a former prosecution witness.
According to a press release issued Tuesday, Santigie Borbor Kanu and Hassan Papa Bangura were each found guilty on two counts of interfering with the administration of justice by offering a bribe to a witness, and for attempting to induce a witness to recant (or to state that he testified falsely) testimony he gave before the Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL).
Ibrahim Bazzy Kamara was convicted by the ECSL for attempting to induce a witness to recant his testimony. He was, however, found not guilty of offering a bribe to a witness. Kamara was also convicted of knowingly violating a court order protecting the identity of a witness who had testified against him in the AFRC trial.
Kamara and Kanu are currently serving sentences of 45 and 50 years, respectively, after being convicted for war crimes and crimes against humanity.
A fourth accused, Samuel Kargbo, had earlier pleaded guilty at his initial appearance in July 2011 and was convicted on both counts. He subsequently testified for the prosecution. Kargbo currently remains free on bail on his own recognizance pending sentencing.
Based in Sierra Leone's capital city of Freetown, the SCSL was jointly set up by the government of Sierra Leone and the United Nations in 2002 to try those most responsible for serious violations of international humanitarian law committed in Sierra Leone since November 1996.
by RTT Staff Writer
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