The final arguments in the trial of former Liberian President Charles Taylor kicks-off in a confusing state on February 8, and are expected to end on February 11, in The Hague.
Yesterday, Taylor’s counsel Courtney Griffiths walked out of court after judges refused to accept his final written brief when tried to submit it to the court 20 days after the deadline.
The closing arguments were being streamed over the internet beginning at 9:30 a.m. Hague time (8:30 a.m. GMT), monitored by our news editor from the Court’s website, www.sc-sl.org.
Despite Griffiths’s walk out followed by Mr. Taylor, our news editor gathered that proceedings continued in their absence and it is not clear if the party will be given the chance to submit more than 70 percent of their written brief today (February 9).
Charles Taylor is charged with an 11 count indictment which alleges that he was responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by rebels in Sierra Leone during the country’s decade-long civil conflict. He has pleaded not guilty to all counts.
During the trial, the Prosecution called 94 witnesses, while 21 persons testified for the Defence, including Mr. Taylor himself. After the completion of the closing arguments, the Judges will retire to consider the Trial Judgment. The Judgment is will be expended in mid-2011.