15 Mar 2012

Congo warlord found guilty of war crimes

7:05 am on 15 March 2012

The International Criminal Court in the Hague has found Congolese warlord Thomas Lubanga guilty of war crimes.

Lubanga has been convicted of recruiting and using child soldiers between 2002 and 2003.

The BBC reports the the verdict is the first by the court, set up 10 years ago.

Lubanga led a rebel group during an inter-ethnic conflict in a gold-rich region of the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The prosecution accused him of using children as young as nine as bodyguards, sex slaves and fighters.

The court cannot impose the death penalty, but Lubanga could face a maximum sentence of life imprisonment. He will be sentenced at a later hearing.