Yekatom and Ngaïssona Case

The Prosecutor v. Alfred Yekatom and Patrice-Edouard Ngaïssona

ICC-01/14-01/18
Image
In ICC custody

Alfred Yekatom

National of the Central African Republic, born on 23 January 1975 in Bimbo. Former caporal-chef in the Forces Armées Centrafricaines, and a member of parliament in the CAR. Allegedly commanding a group of around 3,000 members operating within the Anti-Balaka movement. Also known as "Alfred Saragba", "Rombhot", "Rambo", "Rambot", "Rombot", "Rhombot", "Rombo", or "Romboht".

Mr Yekatom is alleged to be responsible for crimes committed in this context in various locations in the CAR, including Bangui and the Lobaye Prefecture, between 5 December 2013 and August 2014, as follows:

  • crimes against humanity: murder, deportation or forcible transfer of population, imprisonment or other severe deprivation of physical liberty, torture, persecution, and other inhumane acts; and

  • war crimes: murder, torture and cruel treatment, mutilation, intentional attack against the civilian population, intentional attack against buildings dedicated to religion, enlistment of children under the age of 15 years and their use to participate actively in hostilities, displacement of the civilian population and destruction of the adversary's property.

Image
In ICC custody

Patrice-Edouard Ngaïssona

​Alleged most senior leader and the "National General Coordinator" of the Anti-Balaka in Central African Republic (CAR).

Mr Ngaïssona is alleged to be responsible for crimes committed in this context in various locations in the CAR, including Bangui, Bossangoa, the Lobaye Prefecture, Yaloké, Gaga, Bossemptélé, Boda, Carnot and Berberati, between at least 5 December 2013 and at least December 2014, as follows:

  • crimes against humanity: murder and attempted murder, extermination, deportation or forcible transfer of population, imprisonment or other severe deprivation of physical liberty, torture, rape and attempted rape, persecution and other inhumane acts; and

  • war crimes: murder and attempted murder, torture, cruel treatment, mutilation, outrages upon personal dignity, intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population, intentionally directing attacks against buildings dedicated to religion, pillaging, rape and attempted rape, enlistment of children under the age of 15 years and their use to participate actively in hostilities, displacement of the civilian population and destruction of the property of an adversary.

    • 0
    • 1
  • The arrest warrant for Alfred Yekatom was issued on 11 November 2018 and unsealed on 17 November 2018. He was surrendered to the ICC on 17 November 2018 and appeared for the first time before Pre-Trial Chamber II on 23 November 2018. The arrest warrant for Patrice-Edouard Ngaïssona was issued on 7 December 2018. He was arrested by the authorities of the French Republic on 12 December 2018 and transferred to the ICC detention centre on 23 January 2019, upon completion of necessary national proceedings. His initial appearance before Pre-Trial Chamber II took place on 25 January 2019. On 20 February 2019, Pre-Trial Chamber II joined the Yekatom and Ngaïssona cases.

    The confirmation of charges hearing was held on 19-25 September and 11 October 2019. On 11 December 2019, Pre-Trial Chamber II partially confirmed the charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity brought by the Prosecutor against Mr Yekatom and Mr Ngaïssona and committed them to trial. The public redacted version of the decision on the confirmation of charges was published on 20 December 2019.

    On 11 March 2020, Pre-Trial Chamber II rejected the Prosecution's Request for Reconsideration of, or alternatively Leave to Appeal, the "Decision on the confirmation of charges against Alfred Yekatom and Patrice-Edouard Ngaissona", thereby concluding the proceedings in the case before that Chamber, and ordering the Registrar to transmit the Decision Confirming the Charges and the record of the proceedings to the ICC Presidency. This was done on 13 March 2020. On 16 March 2020, the Presidency constituted Trial Chamber V to be in charge of this case and is composed of Judge Bertram Schmitt, Judge Péter Kovács and Judge Chang-ho Chung.

    The trial opened on 16 February 2021 before Trial Chamber V. The prosecution called 75 witnesses to testify. The Legal Representatives of Victims also called three witnesses to testify.

    On 28 November 2023, the Defence for Mr  Yekatom made its opening statement. The Defence for Mr Ngaïssona had already presented its opening statement at the beginning of trial.

    Mr Yekatom and Mr Ngaïssona are in the Court's custody.  

    Next steps: On 11 December 2023, the first witness is scheduled to be called by the Defence.

    Information for victims

Next Sessions

09:30
16 July 2024, Trial hearing, Courtroom I

09:30
17 July 2024, Trial hearing, Courtroom I

09:30
18 July 2024, Trial hearing, Courtroom I

09:30
19 August 2024, Trial hearing, Courtroom I

09:30
20 August 2024, Trial hearing, Courtroom I

Trial Chamber V

Judge Bertram Schmitt (Presiding)
Judge Péter Kovács
Judge Chang-ho Chung
Judge Beti Hohler (Alternate Judge)

Office of the Prosecutor

Karim A. A. Khan QC, Prosecutor
Kweku Vanderpuye, Senior Trial Lawyer

Defence

​Yekatom Defence:
Mylène Dimitri
Sarah Bafadhel, Associate Counsel

Ngaïssona Defence:
Geert-Jan Alexander Knoops, principal Counsel
Marie-Hélène Proulx, Associate Counsel 
Lauriane Vandeler, Associate Counsel  

Legal Representatives of the Victims

Dmytro Suprun
Abdou Dangabo Moussa
Elisabeth Rabesandratana
Yaré Fall
Marie-Edith Douzima-Lawson