Thursday, September 8, 2011

STL President Convenes Trial Chamber in Ayyash et al. case

Leidschendam, 8 September 2011 - The President of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon, Judge Antonio Cassese, today issued an order convening the Trial Chamber for the first time.

According to the Tribunal's rules, the Trial Chamber may meet before trial starts to engage in various matters, such as holding an initial appearance with the accusedA person who has been charged with one or more counts of criminal conduct in an indictment which has been confirmed by the Pre-Trial Judge if one is in custody, deciding whether a trial in absentia is appropriate and ruling on preliminary motions.

The judges of the Trial Chamber are Judge Robert Roth of Switzerland, the Presiding Judge of the Chamber; Judge Micheline Braidi of Lebanon; Judge David Re of Australia; Judge Janet Nosworthy of Jamaica, an alternate judge; and Judge Walid Akoum of Lebanon, an alternate judge.

According to the Tribunal's Statute and Rules, alternate Judges are present at each stage of the proceedings and may pose questions during hearings, but do not vote during deliberationsThe discussions and processes that take place after a trial or hearing and during which the judges retire and consider the arguments and evidence presented to them so as to reach a decision in the case. . Alternate judges can replace Judges of the Trial Chamber should the voting judges be unable to continue sitting.

Short biographic notes of the five judges are available on the Tribunal's website.