Information for victims
Information for victims
Updated on 24/10/2023
On 14 March 2022, Maxime Jeoffroy Eli Mokom Gawaka was surrendered to the International Criminal Court (“ICC”) pursuant to a warrant of arrest which was issued under seal by Pre‑Trial Chamber II (“the Chamber”) on 10 December 2018 and made public on 22 March 2022 (“Warrant of Arrest”). On 9 March 2023, the Prosecution filed the Document Containing the Charges against Mr Mokom, according to which Mr Mokom bears individual criminal responsibility for crimes against humanity and war crimes allegedly committed in Bangui and Bossangoa in the Central African Republic, between at least 5 December 2013 until at least late April 2014. The crimes referred to in the charges are: intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population, murder, rape, intentionally directing attacks against buildings dedicated to religion, destroying the property of an adversary, pillaging, deportation or forcible transfer of population, severe deprivation of physical liberty and persecution.
On 22 March 2022, Mr Mokom came before the Chamber for the initial appearance hearing . After confirming the suspect’s identity and informing him of the charges against him, the Chamber initially scheduled 31 January 2023 as the provisional date for the opening of the confirmation of charges hearing in the case of The Prosecutor v. Maxime Jeoffroy Eli Mokom Gawaka (“Mokom case”). This date was postponed.
On 27 June 2022, the Chamber issued an order setting out, among other information, the principles and procedures governing victims’ participation in the Mokom case, and, specifically, approving the use of a joint application form for participation in the proceedings and/or for reparations for the Mokom case
On 3 February 2023, the Chamber scheduled 22 August 2023 as the new date for the opening of the confirmation of charges hearing.
On 7 August 2023, the Chamber issued a decision on the applications for participation and/or reparations from victims and authorized 733 victims to participate in the proceedings in the Mokom case.
On 22 August 2023, the confirmation of charges hearing commenced and the victims authorized to participate in it were represented in court by a team of four lawyers (Mr Dangabo Moussa, Ms Douzima, Mr Fall and Ms Rabesandratana) whom the Chamber previously appointed in its decision on the legal representation of victims in relation to the confirmation hearing in the Mokom case issued on 27 March 2023.
On 16 October 2023, the Prosecutor filed a notice of withdrawal of the charges against Mr Mokom. The Prosecutor referred to changed circumstances regarding the state of the evidence in the case and “at this stage [...] does not consider that there is a reasonable prospect of conviction at trial even if the charges were confirmed” by Pre-Trial Chamber II. The Prosecutor stated that this is “without prejudice to a potential submission of a new application for a warrant of arrest against Mr Mokom in the event that additional collection of evidence provides a reasonable prospect of conviction.”
On 17 October 2023, Pre-Trial Chamber II took note of the Prosecutor’s withdrawal of the charges against Mr Mokom, terminated the proceedings and ordered his immediate release.
The case is therefore considered closed so long as the Prosecutor does not present new evidence.
The forms for participation in the proceedings and/or for reparations which the Registry has received from victims, including forms transmitted to the judges, will be stored confidentially in the database of the Registry of the Court.
For information regarding victims in proceedings in the Central African Republic, please contact the Victims Participation and Reparations Section (VPRS) of the Registry at [email protected] or on the local number +236 72303402.
For further information concerning victims, please click here.