The Special Court for Sierra Leone and the Residual Special Court for Sierra Leone, Freetown and The Hague

Officials of the Residual Special Court for Sierra Leone


Justice Jon Kamanda served as an Appeals Judge of the Special Court for Sierra Leone from 2007 to 2013. He was educated in Sierra Leone and in the UK. He trained as a Barrister at the Inns of Court School of Law in London, and was called to the Bar at the Middle Temple in 1975. From 1976 to 1980 he worked as State Prosecutor in the Government Law Office, rising to the rank of Senior State Counsel. In 1980 he entered private practice in criminal law. Justice Kamanda has served as an Appeals Court Justice in the Sierra Leone judiciary since 2004, and is the Presiding Judge in criminal appeals. He has also served as a High Court Judge in the Civil Division. In 1982 he was elected to Parliament, and he has served as Deputy Minister of Mineral Resources and Minister of Health, and also as Managing Director of the National Diamond Mining Company (NDMC). Justice Kamanda previously served three terms as President of the Special Court for Sierra Leone. He was appointed a Judge of the Residual Special Court for Sierra Leone in 2013. He was Vice-President of the Court from 2014 to 2016, and was elected President of the Residual Special Court in December 2018.


James C. "Jim" Johnson joined the Office of the Prosecutor at the SCSL in 2003 as Senior Trial Attorney, and was named Chief of Prosecutions in 2006. After he left the SCSL in 2012 he served for three years as President and CEO of the Robert H. Jackson Center in Jamestown, New York. Since 2013 he has been Adjunct Professor of Law and Director of the Henry T. King War Crimes Research Office, Case Western Reserve University School of Law in Cleveland, Ohio. He is also Director of the International Humanitarian Law Roundtable and Managing Director of Justice Consultancy International, LLC. Prior to joining the SCSL, he served for twenty years as Judge Advocate in the United States Army. He was named Prosecutor of the RSCSL in September 2019.


Binta Mansaray was appointed Registrar of the Residual Special Court for Sierra Leone by the Secretary-General of the United Nations in September 2014. She had served as Acting Registrar of the Residual Special Court since its inception in January 2014. She previously served as Registrar of the Special Court for Sierra Leone, a post she held from February 2010 to December 2013, when the Special Court closed upon the successful completion of its mandate. From July 2007 to February 2010, she was Deputy Registrar, and while continuing to hold that post, she was appointed Acting Registrar in June 2009.

Ms. Mansaray first joined the Special Court in 2003 as Outreach Coordinator, during which time she designed the Court's widely-acclaimed Grassroots Programme to keep the people of Sierra Leone, and later Liberia, informed about the Court and its trials. Prior to joining the Court, Ms. Mansaray was a human rights advocate for victims and women and adolescent ex-combatants of the Sierra Leone armed conflict, and worked with a number of organizations. She held the post of Protection Partner/Country Representative for the Women's Commission for Refugee Women and Children in Sierra Leone. She worked with the Campaign for Good Governance, several civil society organizations, and served as consultant with the United Nations Mission in Sierra Leone (UNAMSIL).

Ms. Mansaray is a graduate of the University of Sierra Leone. She received a Master's degree in French from Fordham University in New York and a Master's degree in Public Administration and Policy from American University, Washington, DC. In April 2018, she was inducted by the American University into Pi Alpha Alpha, a Global Honour Society which recognizes outstanding scholarship in public administration and public affairs.

Principal Defender

Ibrahim Yillah is a graduate of Fourah Bay College, University of Sierra Leone. He obtained his LLB (Hons) in 1996 in Freetown, and later graduated with LLM at the University of Pretoria in Human Right Law. He was appointed Principal Defender in 2014. Fourah Bay College University of Sierra Leone. He previously served as Counsel in the Defence Office at the Special Court for Sierra Leone, and also as Trial Attorney in the Office of the Prosecutor at the International Criminal Court in The Hague, the Netherlands. He has considerable experience in Criminal Litigation, and he is also currently working as a Consultant in Environmental Law in Sierra Leone.