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General Principles of Procedural Criminal Law envisioned by ICTS

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Chapter Summary

This chapter discusses principles of substantive and procedural criminal law from common law and international treaty-law. The trial practice of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) illustrates a gradual shift to a judiciary having a more prominent role in accelerating trials. The main character of pre-trial proceedings is the absence of the determination of guilt or innocence of the accused, as this is finally assessed at the subsequent trial stage. An essential pre-trial right is that of the right to apply for provisional or interim release. Accordingly, the International Criminal Tribunals (ICTS) have incorporated this right in their Rules of Procedure and Evidence. In holding individuals criminally responsible for the most heinous offences, trials before international criminal courts must ensure the protection of the rights of the accused, as only the highest moral standards can legitimate the outcome of these trials.

Keywords: ICTY; international criminal courts; International Criminal Tribunals (ICTS); pre-trial right; procedural criminal law; Rules of Procedure and Evidence



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