‘Offences against the administration of justice and fair trial considerations before the International Criminal Court’ is the latest Discussion Paper from the IBA’s ICC & ICL Programme. This Discussion Paper seeks to provide the basis for a policy-level discussion on how the International Criminal Court (ICC) implements its jurisdiction over ‘offences against the administration of justice’, as defined in Article 70 of the Rome Statute.
Article 70 criminalises behaviour that seriously undermines proceedings, including witness interference in the form of intimidation, corruption and threats. As such, the ability to investigate and prosecute offenses against the administration of justice is an important provision to protect the integrity of ICC trials.
Taking a comparative perspective, the Discussion Paper examines the legal framework for Article 70 proceedings at the ICC, and highlights procedural issues that have an impact on the fairness of proceedings. It examines in detail two Article 70 investigations arising out of ICC trial proceedings, in the Bemba and Ntaganda cases, with attention to the role of the prosecution in the Article 70 investigation, and the management of Article 70 investigations by the pre-trial and trial chambers. The Discussion Paper also looks at how the use of ex parte proceedings and access to the communications of the accused impact the rights of the accused.
The Discussion Paper explores future considerations for Article 70 proceedings through the lens of fair trials, and provides recommendations for strengthening current practices.
Click here to download 'Offences against the administration of justice and fair trial considerations before the International Criminal Court', August 2017.