Judges at the International Criminal Court said Katanga, who
was 24 at the time of the attack, was crucial in arming the
ethnic Lendu and Ngiti fighters who carried out the attack on
Bogoro village, when some 200 ethnic Hema civilians were killed.
"The attackers literally carved their victims up limb from
limb," presiding judge Bruno Cotte said. "The attackers slashed
them with machetes and knives as they tried to make their
Katanga becomes only the second person to be sentenced by the
court, which was set up 12 years ago to bring to justice those
guilty of the most serious international crimes, but which has
been criticized for slow justice and accused of singling out
Africans for prosecution.
The February 2003 raid was part of a broader conflict in the
resource-rich Ituri region of northeast Congo in the early
2000s. Several participants in that conflict have come before
the ICC, including warlord Thomas Lubanga, who was sentenced to
14 years for the crime of using child soldiers.
Judges ruled that the seven years Katanga had already spent in
the ICC's detention center before and during his trial should
count towards his sentence. He could be eligible for early
release next year, when he will have served two thirds of his
sentence. He can appeal against his conviction.
(Reporting by Thomas Escritt; Editing by Alison Williams)
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