Wednesday, June 27, 2007
Charles Taylor trial on hold again
Only days after handing down verdicts in its first cases, the Special Court for Sierra Leone has adjourned the Charles Taylor trial so that new defense counsel can be appointed. The court had refused to permit Taylor’s no-show strategy (also discussed here) to derail the proceedings -- and properly so, under the court’s Rules of Procedure and Evidence, which permit it to continue in the defendant’s absence if he has appeared in court and been given the opportunity to participate but is simply refusing to attend. However, the court could not ignore his decision to fire his defense counsel. Proceedings are supposed to begin again on July 3, one month after the first attempt to get the trial rolling on June 4.