THE HAGUE, NETHERLANDS (AP) - War crimes judges on Tuesday ordered special security measures for fashion model Naomi Campbell when she testifies at the trial of former Liberian President Charles Taylor, barring photographers from catching her entering or leaving the courtroom.
The judges say Campbell’s fears for her safety and privacy are legitimate because of her high profile and the intense media interest in her appearance.
Her testimony, however, will be recorded as usual by courtroom cameras.
She is due to appear Thursday, but judges have not yet decided on a motion submitted last week by Taylor’s lawyers to delay her appearance.
Measures to protect witnesses in war crimes cases are routine, especially when disclosure of their identity could subsequently endanger them or their families. Such witnesses testify under pseudonyms and with their images blurred in recordings of their testimony.
But blocking the media from photographing a known witness is highly unusual.
Campbell was summoned to testify about whether she received diamonds from Taylor after a celebrity-studded dinner in South Africa in 1997. Taylor is accused of trading in “blood diamonds” in exchange for helping rebel factions during the 11-year civil war in Sierra Leone. He has denied possessing such conflict diamonds.
By John Solomon
How the government's punishing of the exposure of official wrongdoing can linger for years
Independent voices from the TWT Communities
Television commentary, reviews, news and nonstop DVR catch-up.
Are there profound differences between the Left and the Right? You betcha.
Covering the world of soccer, including the World Cup, Major League Soccer, D.C. United and the English Premier League and other interesting sporting events.
A carefully guided tour through the confusing world of modern bookselling and publishing.
Benghazi: The anatomy of a scandal
Vietnam Memorial adds four names
Cinco de Mayo on the Mall
NRA kicks off annual convention