afrc

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07 June 2004 by Thierry Cruvellier and Kelvin Lewis

Freetown, 3 June 2004. All the signs pointed to a smooth opening day in the trial of Sam Hinga Norman, national coordinator of the Civil Defence Forces (CDF), his number two, Moinina Fofana, and Allieu Kondewa, responsible for initiation ceremonies for the pro-government militia.

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18 October 2004 by Thierry Cruvellier

For those who have followed the tribulations of the Sierra Leone Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) for almost three years, its official report, which was published on 5 October, constitutes a small miracle. No one could have predicted such a logically structured, abundantly detailed, and well-written report two years ago when the Commission almost dissolved itself through sheer negligence. Even a year ago when the report was first due out, hopes for a turnaround were not high.

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29 March 2005 by KELVIN LEWIS

The third and last scheduled trial at the Special Court for Sierra Leone finally got underway on 7 March. The three men in the dock are former members of the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC): Alex Tamba Brima, Brima Bazzy Kamara and Santigie Borbor Kanu. They faced the three foreign judges after spending nearly two years in detention. On stage for perhaps the last time was court prosecutor David Crane, two weeks after announcing he will be stepping down in July after three years at the head of the prosecution.

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09 May 2005 by KELVIN LEWIS

In April, the trial of three ex-members of the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC) - the ousted military junta that ruled Sierra Leone in 1997- 1998 and returned to invade Freetown in 1999 - opened at the new chamber of the Special Court for Sierra Leone. The three recently arrived judges were faced with a number of new challenges in court, including the decision by all three defence counsel to stop defending their clients in protest at the suspension of one of their investigators (see inset).

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04 June 2007 by Sylvain Savolainen

Former Liberian President Charles Taylor's trial will open before the Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL) on June 4. The Court has been relocated to the Hague [IJT-44] to try the case, which will be both its most important trial and its last. The Special Court, which was created in 2002, was expected to last just three years. In the end, it will have taken eight years to try nine individuals. And the jury is still out as to whether the Court will live up to expectations.

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03 March 2008 by Thierry Cruvellier

On February 22, the Appeals Chamber in the Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL) issued its first judgment, confirming the sentence of three important leaders of the former military junta of the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC) for war crimes and crimes against humanity committed between 1997 and 2000. The judges also added a new crime: forced marriages. Most importantly, they found that Alex Tamba Brima, Brima Bazzy Kamara and Santigie Borbor Kanu were part of a joint criminal enterprise, a decisive finding for the Taylor trial.