Top lawyers lined up for Deputy President William Ruto, Joshua Sang case

Defence lawyer for Deputy President William Ruto, Karim Khan, and Katwa Kigen for Joshua Sang address the press  at the International Criminal Court on Monday.  [PHOTO: PIUS CHERUIYOT/STANDARD]

Lawyer Karim Khan

Khan, a British lawyer and specialist in international criminal and human rights law was called to the bar in 1992 at London’s Lincoln’s Inn and later attended Wolfson College at Oxford University for doctoral studies in law.

He presently practices before courts in Britain and abroad.

He worked as a Senior Crown Prosecutor at the British Law Commission and from 1997-2000 served as a legal adviser to the UN International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia and International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda and later as defence counsel before the Special Courts in East Timor, Sierra Leone and Yugoslavia and Rwanda.

In addition to international criminal and human rights law, he has in-depth experience and expertise in immigration and asylum law and is an approved counsel to act for Britain’s Attorney General.

His international standing and expertise was further recognised by the offer of the post of international legal adviser to the Appeals Chamber of the Iraqi Special Tribunal (IST) in 2005. He was also made a member of the Queens Council.

Khan was appointed to lead the Defence team of President Charles Taylor of Liberia at the Special Tribunal.

Lawyer Shyamala Alagendra

Shyamala studied for her law degree in Malaysia and graduated in 1995. She is an advocate and solicitor of the High Court of Malaysia. She acted as defence counsel for the former Head of the Public Service Francis Muthaura, whose charges were dropped in March this year in relation to allegations that he orchestrated crimes against humanity.

The Malaysian lawyer has prosecuted and defended many leaders and individuals around the world.

Lawyer David Hooper

Hooper has expertise in human rights and international criminal law and has previously appeared before international criminal tribunals. He assisted in the preliminary stages of the case against President Laurent Gbagbo, former President of Cote D’Ivoire, who has been charged with crimes against humanity following the disputed election in that country. Hooper was also a counsel for Fr Hormisdas, a Catholic priest accused of conspiracy in organising the genocide in Rwanda, and of killing fellow priests and civilians. The trial started in June 2007 and Fr Hormisdas was acquitted of all charges in November 2009.

Lawyer Essa Faal

Faal, a Gambian, has previously worked for the Office of the Prosecutor regarding cases in Darfur, Sudan and rose to become the senior trial lawyer for those cases by November 1, 2007.

He has expertise in international law, litigation and international human rights law.

Essa was also appointed as a Prosecutor in East Timor where he prosecuted cases from ordinary to serious, international crimes, as well as provided training and mentoring to local prosecutors.

In 2003, Essa became the Acting Deputy General Prosecutor for Serious Crimes of East Timor (a position he held for six months) and later become the Chief of Prosecution for Serious Crimes.

He has also worked as First Secretary (Legal Affairs) and then as Counselor and Head of Chancery for the Permanent Mission of The Gambia to the United Nations and as State Counsel for the Attorney General’s Chambers in Gambia, working in both litigation and legal drafting.

Essa holds a LLB (Hons) from Fourah Bay College (University of Sierra Leone) and a LL.M degree in Legislative Drafting and Public Law from the University of the West Indies.

Lawyer Logan Hambrick

She was based in Freetown, after graduating from The George Washington University Law School with a focus on international human rights law.

She has also served as assistant counsel throughout the confirmation of charges phase, and during the pre-trial phase of proceedings before the ICC on behalf of Sang.

Lawyer Katwa Kigen

Katwa is a graduate of the University of Nairobi with a Bachelor of Laws degree and was admitted to the bar as an advocate of the High Court of Kenya in 1996.

He has since been in continuous practice. Katwa is currently a candidate for the award of the degree of Master of Laws from the University of Nairobi.

Lawyer Silas Chekera

Chekera on the other hand is a trial lawyer with diverse legal experiences in national and international courts. His areas of practice include international criminal law, international humanitarian law, international human rights law, criminal law, constitutional law, administrative law, and civil law and commercial litigation. 

The Zimbabwean lawyer was also defence counsel at the Special Court for Sierra Leone, where he represented former Liberian President, Charles Taylor and also served as a trial lawyer with the Prosecution at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda.

Chekera holds a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Zimbabwe and a Masters of Laws from the International Law University of Cape Town.