ICC proceedings in Mokom case terminated after the Office of the Prosecutor withdraws all charges
On Tuesday, 17 October 2023, Pre-Trial Chamber II of the International Criminal Court (ICC) terminated the proceedings in the case of The Prosecutor v. Maxime Jeoffroy Eli Mokom Gawaka, and ordered his immediate release. Mr. Mokom was released from the ICC detention on the same day.
The Chamber acted on the basis of the Prosecution’s notice of withdrawal of the charges against Mr Mokom, dated 16 October 2023. This notice asserts that there are relevant changes regarding the evidence in the case. Therefore, the Prosecution considers that, even if the charges would be confirmed by Pre-Trial Chamber II, there is no reasonable prospect for a conviction at trial.
At the time of the Prosecution’s notice, the confirmation of charges hearing had not yet been concluded. For that reason, Pre-Trial Chamber II had not yet evaluated the evidence or started deliberations concerning the request to confirm the charges. In order to withdraw the charges, the Prosecution only had to inform Pre-Trial Chamber II. Therefore, the Chamber took note of the withdrawal of the charges by the Prosecution, and ordered Mr Mokom’s immediate release.
Pre-Trial Chamber II also instructed the ICC Registrar to make all necessary arrangements for Mr Mokom’s transfer to a receiving State. Pending his transfer Mr Mokom is in a temporary ICC designated location.
Background: Mr Mokom was suspected of war crimes and crimes against humanity allegedly committed in the Central African Republic from at least 5 December 2013 through at least the end of April 2014.
On 14 March 2022, Mr Mokom was surrendered to the Court by the authorities of the Republic of Chad on account of an ICC warrant of arrest issued under seal on 10 December 2018. His first appearance before Pre-Trial Chamber II took place on 22 March 2022. The confirmation of charges hearing commenced on 22 August 2023, but had not yet been concluded as the parties still had to submit written submissions on the merits of the case.
For further information, please contact Sonia Robla, Chief of the Public Information and Outreach Section, International Criminal Court, by telephone at+31 (0)6 46448726 or by e-mail at: [email protected]