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International Criminal Court gives Jean-Pierre Bemba conditional release

ICC - August 14, 2009
Jean-Pierre Bemba

Today, 14 August 2009, Pre-Trial Chamber II of the International Criminal Court decided to grant the request of Jean-Pierre Bemba Gombo for interim release, albeit under conditions. The implementation of this decision is deferred pending a determination in which State Jean-Pierre Bemba Gombo will be released and which set of conditions shall be imposed.

In conformity with article 60(3) of the Rome Statute and rule 118(3) of the Rules of Procedure and Evidence, Pre-Trial Chamber II reviewed anew its previous ruling on the continued detention of Jean-Pierre Bemba Gombo dated 14 April 2009. Prior to today’s decision, Pre-Trial Chamber II held a hearing on 29 June 2009 with respect to any issue related to the pre-trial detention of Jean-Pierre Bemba Gombo.

Pre-Trial Chamber II found that changed circumstances since 14 April 2009 warranted the modification of its previous ruling on detention, as the requirements for continued detention pursuant to article 58(1)(a) and (b) of the Rome Statute were no longer met. In assessing all relevant factors of the case taken together and having balanced those factors, Pre-Trial Chamber II held that the continued detention of Jean-Pierre Bemba Gombo did not appear necessary (i) to ensure the appearance of Jean-Pierre Bemba Gombo at trial, (ii) to ensure that he does not obstruct or endanger the investigation or the court proceedings and (iii) to prevent Jean-Pierre Bemba Gombo from continuing with the commission of the same or related crimes which arise out of the same circumstances in the present case.

Pre-Trial Chamber II invited those States, to which Jean-Pierre Bemba Gombo requested to be released, to provide informative observations on the questions of his interim release onto their territory and any possible set of conditions restricting liberty to be imposed. The hearings are envisaged to take place between 7 and 14 September 2009.

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