Supermodel Naomi Campbell was yesterday granted “protective measures” ahead of her appearance to give evidence in a case against former warlord Charles Taylor.
The Special Court for Sierra Leone granted her the right for a lawyer to be present in court to ensure that she did not give any evidence that might incriminate her.
The court said the lawyer would have “limited right to be heard solely on the admissibility of any questions put to Ms Campbell which go to possible self-incrimination”.
The court also ordered officials to ensure “no person shall photograph, or video record Ms Campbell while entering the tribunal building, exiting from the tribunal building, or while she is in the tribunal building, without leave of the trial chamber or Ms Campbell”.
A spokesman for the Special Court in the Hague, where Campbell is due to give evidence tomorrow, could not say definitively if this would prevent the model from being photographed by journalists standing outside the court.
A request that such restrictions be extended to her transit to and from court within Holland was turned down on the grounds it was outside the court’s jurisdiction.
Campbell was issued with a subpoena to attend after actress Mia Farrow and the model’s former agent Carole White said she received a rough diamond from Taylor after a charity party hosted by Nelson Mandela in South Africa in 1997.
Taylor is charged with 11 counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity, over his alleged involvement in the civil war in neighbouring Sierra Leone, including murder, rape and conscripting child soldiers.
The 62-year-old is accused of arming and controlling Sierra Leone’s Revolutionary United Front, a rebel force responsible for widespread atrocities.
Prosecutors say Taylor’s alleged possession of rough diamonds is a “central issue” in the case against him, and supports allegations he was given the stones by the RUF to buy weapons for them.
Campbell was granted the legal the “protective measures” – which are usually reserved for witnesses at risk of revenge attacks – to “protect her privacy and security”.