International Justice Monitor

A project of the Open Society Justice Initiative

Timeline

April 11, 2002

The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) ratifies the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC).

April 19, 2004

Joseph Kabila, President of the Democratic Republic of Congo, refers the situation to the ICC concerning crimes committed anywhere in the DRC.

June 23, 2004

ICC Prosecutor, Louis Moreno-Ocampo, announces the launch of investigations into crimes committed in the DRC.

February 10, 2006

Pre-Trial Chamber I issues an arrest warrant for Thomas Lubanga Dyilo.

March 17, 2006

Pre-Trial Chamber I unseals the arrest warrant.

March 16, 2006

Lubanga is transferred to the ICC, located in The Hague, the Netherlands.

March 20, 2006

Lubanga makes his first appearance in court. Pre-Trial Chamber I explains the charges against him.

November 9-28, 2006

The pre-trial chamber holds hearings to determine whether the prosecutor has sufficient evidence against Lubanga. During the pre-trial phase, the prosecutor does not need to prove the case, only show there are substantial grounds to believe that the accused committed the crimes he is accused of committing.

January 29, 2007

Pre-Trial Chamber I decides there is sufficient evidence to proceed to trial on three counts of war crimes (enlistment of children under the age of fifteen, conscription of children under the age of fifteen, and use of children under the age of fifteen to actively participate in hostilities).

June 13, 2008

Trial Chamber I imposes a stay on the proceedings after finding that the prosecutor incorrectly used Article 54(3)(e) of the Rome Statute. The Article 54(3 )(e ) allows the prosecutor to  obtain confidential documents  from third parties, however, such documents can only be used to generate new evidence and cannot be used  as evidence in trial. The chamber notes that misuse of the rule resulted in a failure to disclose a large number of exculpatory evidence to the accused.

July 2, 2008

Trial Chamber I grants the release of Lubanga arguing that release is a logical consequence of the stay of the proceedings that would not allow for the accused to obtain a fair trial.

July 11, 2008

The prosecutor asks Trial Chamber I to resume the trial against Mr. Lubanga and reverse the order of release.

October 21, 2008

The ICC Appeals Chamber reverses the trial chamber’s decision to release Lubanga and remands the matter back to the trial chamber.

November 18, 2008

Trial Chamber I refuses to grant provisional release of Lubanga and lifts the provisional stay of the proceedings imposed on June 13, 2008.

January 26, 2009

Lubanga’s trial commences before Trial Chamber I.

July 14, 2009

The prosecution concludes the presentation of its case. The Prosecution calls 28 witnesses to testify.

October 2, 2009

Trial Chamber I decides to postpone the presentation of the evidence of the defense pending the decision of Appeal Chambers on the legal characterization of the facts.

July 8, 2010

Trial Chamber I orders indefinite stay of the proceedings against Lubanga arguing that fair trial against the accused may no longer be possible. The trial chamber also orders the prosecutor to disclose to the defense the name and other identifying information on Intermediary 143.

July 15, 2010

Trial Chamber I  orders the release of the accused arguing that Lubanga cannot be held indefinitely in the protective custody.

October 8, 2010

The Appeals Chamber reverses the trial chamber’s decision to stay the proceedings and release Lubanga. The Appeals Chamber argues that the trial chamber erred when it imposed stay of the proceeding without first imposing sanctions on the prosecutor for failure to comply with the chamber’s orders.

May 20, 2011

The trial chamber announces the closure of the presentation of evidence in case against Lubanga and orders the prosecutor and defense to present their closing oral statements in public hearings on August 25-26, 2011.

March 14, 2012

Trial Chamber I finds Lubanga guilty of committing war crimes, as co-perpetrator, of enlisting and conscripting children under the age of fifteen.

June 13, 2012

Trial Chamber I hears submission for sentencing of Lubanga.

July 10, 2012

Trial Chamber I sentences Lubanga to 14 years of imprisonment.

August 7, 2012

Trial Chamber I issues the first ICC decision on reparations for victims and orders that proposals for reparations be submitted to the Trust Fund for Victims for the chamber’s approval.

December 3, 2012

Lubanga files an appeal against his conviction, 14 years prison sentence, and principles handed down by trial judges for determining reparations to victims. The prosecution also files an appeal, asking the Appeals Chamber to raise the prison term of Lubanga.

 May 19-20, 2014

An appeals hearing is held at the ICC. Appeals Chamber judges heard testimony of two former bodyguards to Lubanga, who said they were not child soldiers when they joined his militia. Lubanga also makes an unsworn statement.

December 1, 2014

The ICC Appeals Chamber, by a majority, upholds Lubanga’s conviction and sentence. Lubanga will serve the remainder of his 14 year term in prison.

March 3, 2015

The ICC Appeals Chamber issues its first judgment on reparations, which sets out principles and procedures to be applied in the case against Lubanga. It also orders the Trust Fund for Victims to present a draft implementation plan for collective reparations to a newly constituted trial chamber within six months from the issuance of the judgment.