In Absentia in Real Life: Lebanon Trials

755 WordsFeb 3, 20183 Pages
In absentia in real life: Lebanon trials When the Statute of the STL was drafted, care was taken in order to ensure safeguards for the accused person’s rights when holding trials in absentia: Article 22.2 states that when a hearing is to be held without the accused present, the tribunal must ensure that the accused is notified or is served with the indictment, or is otherwise notified through publications made through the media. It is essential and required by law before holding a trial in absentia to ensure that the accused is aware of the decision of initiating a trial against them. Such a provision can be found under Lebanese law, in article 283 of the Lebanese Code of Criminal Procedure, which requires for a formal summons to be issued, which at the same time is a way of trying to get the accused to surrender himself. Furthermore, under the same code, “all available means to bring the summons to the attention of the accused” must be used. The accused also has the right to be represented in court by a defense counsel “with a view to ensuring full representation of the interests and rights of the accused.” Furthermore, Mr. Francois Roux, head of the STL’s Defense Office, has stated that the lawyers appointed “will not exactly be the accused person’s lawyer, but rather the advocate for the rights of the accused.” However, there are well founded concerns. Regardless of who counsel is, the absence of the accused person will, according to Gardner, “hamper the ability

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