Lawyer accused of bribing witnesses in ICC case surrenders

FILE PHOTO: Kenya's Deputy President William Ruto (R) reacts as he sits in the courtroom before his trial at the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague in this September 10, 2013

A LAWYER turned himself in to Dutch authorities on Monday to face accusations at the International Criminal Court (ICC) of bribing witnesses in a trial of Kenyan Vice President William Ruto which collapsed four years ago.

Kenyan lawyer Paul Gicheru was wanted on an ICC arrest warrant dating from 2015 that accused him of trying to bribe six prosecution witnesses to recant testimony in the case.

Ruto and his co-accused, broadcaster Joshua Sang, were both charged with fomenting violence after a disputed 2007 election when 1,200 people died.

Judges ruled in 2016 that they had no case to answer, although they left the door open for possible fresh charges in future, noting that the case had been hampered by political interference and threats against witnesses.

A spokesman for Ruto would not comment on Gicheru’s case, other than to stress that Gicheru had never acted as Ruto’s lawyer.

In a statement the ICC said it had asked the Dutch to hand over Gicheru to the court as soon as arrest procedures have been completed.

A similar case alleging a role in the 2007 election violence against Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta collapsed in 2015.

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