On March 14, 2017, Popper & Yatvin partner Alan L. Yatvin was appointed Senior Legal Consultant to the Defence team of Mr. Aimé Kilolo Musamba in the case of The Prosecutor vs. Jean-Pierre Bemba et al. (ICC-01/05-01/13), at the International Criminal Court (ICC) sitting in The Hague, The Netherlands.
Mr. Kilolo, a national of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and a member of the Belgian Bar, was convicted of various offences against the administration of justice, relating to the false testimonies of defence witnesses, during his service as defence counsel in the case The Prosecutor v. Jean-Pierre Bemba Gombo.
Mr. Kilolo’s Defence team on appeal is lead by experienced international criminal defence counsel Michael G. Karnavas. Yatvin stated: “I have known Michael for decades. He is beyond doubt one of the world’s top practitioners in the field of international criminal law. I am honored to have been asked to consult with him.”
Yatvin continued: “This prosecution implicated important issues of prosecutorial overreach, conflict and invasion of privilege, interpretation of so-called western legal processes through different cultural norms and traditions, the scope of counsel’s liability for the acts of others, and the nature of assumptions regarding witness credibility and motivations.”
In summary, the appeal focuses on three basic grounds: illegally obtained evidence and its fruits; evidence protected by privilege and privacy rights; and sufficiency of the evidence to support the conviction.
Yatvin, who has practiced criminal defence for 34 years, previously served as lead counsel for an accused at the United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in pre-trial and on appeal, and as interim foreign co-lawyer for a suspect at the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC).