Global court gives Congo’s Bemba an extra year for witness bribing

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Judges at the International Criminal Court on Wednesday added a year to Jean-Pierre Bemba’s 18-year jail term following the former Congolese vice president’s conviction for attempting to bribe witnesses during his war crimes trial.

After a second trial on the separate charges, Bemba, who was vice president of Democratic Republic of Congo from 2003 to 2006, was ordered to pay a 300,000 euro fine to the court’s fund supporting victims of atrocities.

His lawyer Aime Kilolo was given a 30,000 euro fine and a two-and-a-half year suspended prison sentence.

Bemba is appealing his conviction last year on charges of having committed war crimes by allowing his forces on a murderous rampage through the neighbouring Central African Republic in 2002 and 2003.