Congo Warlord Bags 12-year imprisonment

The International Crimes Court, ICC, has sentenced Germain Katanga, ex Congolese militant, to 12 years imprisonment for war crimes.

Katanga, 36, also called Simba or The Lion by his supporters, was accused of masterminding the massacre of several villagers in the north-east of the Democratic Republic of Congo in 2003. The war that ensued after these killings resulted in the death of fifty thousand more people.

He was also found guilty of planning the ambush on Bogoro village in gold-rich Ituri province of Congo. Katanga was also charged with the crime of procuring lethal weapons used in killing over 200 of the villagers, but he was acquitted for not being directly involved in this.

Judge Bruno Cotte, who presided over the case in The Hague, Netherlands-based court said, the grief of the fighting that Katanga sparked is still felt till today. Hence his prison term comes without an option of fine but the period of time, which is more than six years, that Katanga had already spent in ICC custody, which will be taken into account.

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