Amicus Legal Consultants was engaged by UNODC Nairobi to create, develop and facilitate a Counter Terrorism Mock Trial to assist Somali judiciary, prosecutors and defence in presenting and adjudicating terrorism trials in line with international standards.

Nairobi Mock Trial In the context of global counter-terrorism efforts, UNODC is mandated to provide to requesting Member States specialised assistance on the legal and criminal justice aspects of countering terrorism. To that end, UNODC has sought to reinforce its technical assistance engagement with countries in the Horn of Africa and Eastern Africa, including Somalia, with the aim of strengthening their capacity in law enforcement and prosecutions to improve investigative skill, investigative tools, information sharing, successful prosecution and effective national coordination in relation to terrorism cases.

Since the return of relative stability in South Central Somalia, significant efforts on the part of the Somali Federal Government and the international community have been placed into rebuilding Somalia’s National Justice Institutions. Still, the administration of justice in the country is struggling. This is not only for want of infrastructure and resources in courts and prisons following decades of conflict, but also the continued presence of Al-Shabaab in the country’s capital – whose members continue to carry out acts of destruction and intimidation against judicial actors and infrastructure.

Drawing from UNODC mandate as guardian of crime prevention, criminal justice standards, and based on past experiences in prison construction and refurbishment in a number of other regions in Somalia and Somaliland, it has designed the 1,000 bed Mogadishu Prison and Court Complex (MPCC). The MPCC is an integrated court and prison facility designed specifically to handle high-security cases and detainees. The two-courthouse court complex will provide a safe environment for hearing terrorism and other serious criminal cases.

The MPCC project is based on an integrated, multi-disciplinary strategy which includes a significant training element for judicial staff. As the opening date for MPCC is fast approaching, all partners to the MPCC project agreed that a Mock Trial for all judicial personnel who are most likely conduct trials at the MPCC Courtroom, should benefit from a rehearsal through a mock trial.

The scenario and exhibits were created by Amicus Legal Consultants and Arvinder Sambei was responsible for facilitating the mock trial in Nairobi.

News report of the mock trial.

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