International Criminal Law

The International Criminal Court (ICC) is an intergovernmental organisation and international tribunal that sits in The Hague in the Netherlands.

It has the jurisdiction to prosecute individuals for certain international crimes. The ICC may only exercise its jurisdiction in certain circumstances such as when national courts are unwilling or unable to prosecute criminals or when the United Nations Security Council or individual states refer investigations to it as it is intended to complement existing national judicial systems.

The court is able to try cases involving the following:-

  • Genocide: acts undertaken with the specific intent to destroy in whole or in part a national, ethnic, racial or religious group by killing its members or by other means.
  • Crimes against humanity: serious violations committed as part of a large scale attack against any civilian population.
  • War crimes: grave breaches of the Geneva conventions in the context of armed conflict
  • The court operates an approved List of Counsel and List of Assistants to Counsel and runs a scheme to help the funding of cases for defendants. Steven Bird was admitted to the List of Counsel in 2016 and Philippa Southwell admitted to the List of Assistants to Counsel at the same time.

a fierce criminal defence solicitor, who specialises in defending and representing victims of human trafficking

The Law SocietyRegarding MD, Philippa Southwell


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