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Monday News Muse 10 October 2016

CORRUPTION

At least 8 Nigerian judges have been detained in an anti-corruption operation involving $800,000 dollars allegedly found in the judges’ possession. The operation comes amidst claims that the judges took bribes. Lawyers and fellow judges have been vocal in criticising the arrests.

CRIMINAL LAW

Four suspects- all of the employees of the same Kenyan hospital- were charged with the murder of a cancer patient who was brutally attacked and killed inside the hospital while awaiting treatment.

(c) Marcus Ranum, www.ranum.com
(c) Marcus Ranum, www.ranum.com

France is seeking a way to have Syrians brought before the ICC on charges of war crimes. The main jurisdictional difficulty is that Syria is not a member of the ICC treaty (commonly known as the Rome Statute). Since the victims and alleged perpetrators are mostly Syrian as well, only the UN Security Council could refer the situation in such a non-member to the ICC for investigation.

UK prosecutors have issued new guidelines defining what kind of offensive online conduct would actually be deemed criminal. So, children under 18 ‘sexting’ each is not necessarily a crime, whilst ‘virtual mobbing’, ‘doxxing’, ‘flaming’, ‘baiting’, ‘trolling’ and ‘dog-piling’ would be considered harassment offences. Thankfully the article includes a glossary of these terms at the end.

Pakistan recently passed amendments to its criminal law in a bid to stop honour killings. However, commentators are questioning whether the legal reforms will make a difference given that it is difficult for lawyers, let alone the public, to understand the provisions.

 MONEY LAUNDERING

Singapore prosecutors charged two former bankers in relation to the 1MDB scandal. The charges relate to forgery and failure to report suspicious transactions to AML authorities.

SENTENCING

A Kenyan woman who knowingly sold 5 men an alcoholic drink laced with ethanol has been found guilty of their murder nearly 5 years after the men died from consuming the liquor. The judge ruled that at the very least she was aware that drinking the poisonous concoction would cause the men serious injury and hospitalisation. The woman received a mandatory death sentence.


Hearing of a landmark appeal at the Kenyan Supreme Court began, as 2 murder convicts seek to have the death penalty declared unconstitutional. They argue that it is contrary to the constitutional bill of rights as a cruel and inhumane punishment.

Is it fair to have prisoners pay for their ‘use of the criminal justice system’? This is a question that is being asked in the US as research finds that many former inmates are forced to file for bankruptcy after being charged for substance abuse programmes they attend as well as for public defender fees.

After a former Islamic militant pleaded guilty to the war crime of intentionally directing attacks against protected objects, the ICC trial chamber sentenced him to 9 years in prison. The charge relates to the destruction of sacred tombs in Timbuktu, most of which had been classed as UNESCO World Heritage sites.

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