Europe

ICC gives former Congo VP Bemba extra year in prison

  • Aime Kilolo Musamba of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, left, greets his lawyer prior to hearing the verdict of the International Criminal court in The Hague, Netherlands, Wednesday March 22, 2017. Former Congolese vice president Jean-Pierre Bemba has been sentenced to an extra year in prison and fined 300,000 euros ($324,000) along with four others for interfering with witnesses in his trial. Bemba is already serving an 18-year prison term for crimes committed in Central African Republic by a militia he commanded. (Robin van Lonkhuijsen POOL via AP)

    Aime Kilolo Musamba of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, left, greets his lawyer prior to hearing the verdict of the International Criminal court in The Hague, Netherlands, Wednesday March 22, 2017. Former Congolese vice president Jean-Pierre Bemba has been sentenced to an extra year in prison and fined 300,000 euros ($324,000) along with four others for interfering with witnesses in his trial. Bemba is already serving an 18-year prison term for crimes committed in Central African Republic by a militia he commanded. (Robin van Lonkhuijsen POOL via AP)  (The Associated Press)

  • Jean-Jacques Mangenda Kabongo of the Democratic Republic of the Congo wipes his face in the court room to hear the verdict of the International Criminal court in The Hague, Netherlands, Wednesday March 22, 2017. Former Congolese vice president Jean-Pierre Bemba has been sentenced to an extra year in prison and fined 300,000 euros ($324,000) along with four others for interfering with witnesses in his trial. Bemba is already serving an 18-year prison term for crimes committed in Central African Republic by a militia he commanded. (Robin van Lonkhuijsen POOL via AP)

    Jean-Jacques Mangenda Kabongo of the Democratic Republic of the Congo wipes his face in the court room to hear the verdict of the International Criminal court in The Hague, Netherlands, Wednesday March 22, 2017. Former Congolese vice president Jean-Pierre Bemba has been sentenced to an extra year in prison and fined 300,000 euros ($324,000) along with four others for interfering with witnesses in his trial. Bemba is already serving an 18-year prison term for crimes committed in Central African Republic by a militia he commanded. (Robin van Lonkhuijsen POOL via AP)  (The Associated Press)

  • Aime Kilolo Musamba of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, left, talks to his lawyer in the court room prior to hearing the verdict of the International Criminal court in The Hague, Netherlands, Wednesday March 22, 2017. Former Congolese vice president Jean-Pierre Bemba has been sentenced to an extra year in prison and fined 300,000 euros ($324,000) along with four others for interfering with witnesses in his trial. Bemba is already serving an 18-year prison term for crimes committed in Central African Republic by a militia he commanded. (Robin van Lonkhuijsen POOL via AP)

    Aime Kilolo Musamba of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, left, talks to his lawyer in the court room prior to hearing the verdict of the International Criminal court in The Hague, Netherlands, Wednesday March 22, 2017. Former Congolese vice president Jean-Pierre Bemba has been sentenced to an extra year in prison and fined 300,000 euros ($324,000) along with four others for interfering with witnesses in his trial. Bemba is already serving an 18-year prison term for crimes committed in Central African Republic by a militia he commanded. (Robin van Lonkhuijsen POOL via AP)  (The Associated Press)

A former Congolese vice president has been sentenced to an extra year in prison and fined 300,000 euros ($324,000) for interfering with witnesses in his trial at the International Criminal Court.

Jean-Pierre Bemba, who already is serving an 18-year prison term for crimes committed in Central African Republic by a militia he commanded, was sentenced Wednesday along with four members of the legal team.

They were convicted in October of corruptly influencing defense witnesses and presenting false testimony in Bemba's trial linked to atrocities in the Central African Republic in 2002-2003.

The four legal team members were given sentences ranging from six months to two-and-a-half years.

Presiding Judge Bertram Schmitt said the sentences should act as a deterrent to prevent similar crimes in the future.