Press Release: 18 January 2019

ICC Appeals Chamber maintains Laurent Gbagbo and Charles Blé Goudé in custody and convenes a hearing on their detention on 1 February 2019

Mr Laurent Gbagbo and Mr Charles Blé Goudé at the hearing held on 15 January 2019 before the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands ©ICC-CPI

The Appeals Chamber of the International Criminal Court ("ICC" or "Court"), by majority, Judge Howard Morrison and Judge Piotr Hofmański dissenting, decided that Mr Laurent Gbagbo and Mr Charles Blé Goudé shall remain in ICC custody pending the Appeals Chamber's decision on the Prosecution's Appeal against the decision of ICC Trial Chamber I in relation to the release of Mr Laurent Gbagbo and Mr Charles Blé Goudé following their acquittal.

The Appeals Chamber suspended the effect of Trial Chamber I's decision to release Mr Laurent Gbagbo and Mr Charles Blé Goudé and scheduled a hearing on 1 February 2019 to hear further submissions on the appeal, and ordered the submission of the appeal brief of the Prosecutor no later than 23 January 2019 as well as responses thereto from Mr Gbagbo, Mr Blé Goudé and the victims participating in the proceedings no later than 29 January 2019.

Decision on the Prosecutor's request for suspensive effect of her appeal under article 81(3)(c)(ii) of the Statute and directions on the conduct of the appeal proceedings


Dissenting Opinion of Judge Morrison and Judge Hofmański in respect of the decision on suspensive effect

Background: On 15 January 2019, Trial Chamber I, by majority, Judge Herrera Carbuccia dissenting, acquitted Mr Laurent Gbagbo and Mr Charles Blé Goudé from all charges of crimes against humanity allegedly committed in Côte d'Ivoire in 2010 and 2011. A fully reasoned decision will be issued in writing in due course. The Prosecutor may appeal the decision after the full decision is filed.

Under article 81(3)(c) of the Rome Statute, in the case of an acquittal, the person shall be released immediately. However, the Prosecutor may request the Trial Chamber to maintain the detention of the person under exceptional circumstances. 

The trial in this case started on 28 January 2016, for alleged charges of crimes against humanity (murder, rape, other inhumane acts or – in the alternative – attempted murder, and persecution) allegedly committed in the context of post-electoral violence in Côte d'Ivoire between 16 December 2010 and 12 April 2011. 231 hearing days were dedicated to the presentation of the Prosecutor's evidence and 82 witnesses testified in court and through video link; thousands of documents were submitted into evidence, hundreds of motions, requests and decisions were filed. On 4 June 2018, the Chamber declared that that the presentation of the evidence of the Prosecutor was closed.

Further information on this case is available here.

For further information, please contact Fadi El Abdallah, Spokesperson and Head of Public Affairs Unit, International Criminal Court, by telephone at: +31 (0)70 515-9152 or +31 (0)6 46448938 or by e-mail at: [email protected]

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