Congo warlord convicted
The international criminal court has delivered the first verdict in its ten-year history, finding a Congolese warlord guilty of recruiting child soldiers
The international criminal court has delivered the first verdict in its ten-year history, finding a Congolese warlord guilty of recruiting child soldiers. Thomas Lubanga was convicted of snatching children from the street and turning them into killers. He showed no emotion as the presiding judge, Adrian Fulford, read out the verdict.
In a unanimous decision, the three judges said evidence proved that as head of the Union of Congolese Patriots (UPC) and its military wing, Lubanga had been responsible for the conscription of child soldiers active on the frontline.
He now faces a maximum sentence of life imprisonment. The court cannot impose the death penalty. Prosecutors had alleged that Lubanga, 51, was using a rebel militia to dominate the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo's Ituri region, home to one of the world's most lucrative gold reserves.
Children as young as 11 were recruited from their homes and schools.
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