Outsourcing Investigations

28 Pages Posted: 11 May 2010 Last revised: 22 May 2010

See all articles by Elena A. Baylis

Elena A. Baylis

University of Pittsburgh - School of Law

Date Written: September 1, 2009


This article addresses the International Criminal Court’s reliance on third-party investigations in the absence of its own international police force. In addition to cooperation from sometimes reluctant states, the ICC and other international criminal tribunals have come to rely on a network of NGOs and UN entities focused on postconflict justice work to provide critical evidence. This reliance raised problems in the ICC Office of the Prosecutor's first case against Thomas Lubanga. The use of third-party evidence raises questions regarding confidentiality and disclosure, the integrity of the evidence-gathering process, and the equality of arms between the prosecution and the defense. Nevertheless, this article concludes that the Office of the Prosecutor should take advantage of embedded organizations’ contextual knowledge and local connections. The author ultimately proposes two approaches the OTP could consider to effectively use NGO and UN expertise while maximizing control of its investigation: (1) the OTP could insert third-party experts already operating in the relevant areas into its investigations; and/or (2) it could develop a set of detailed guidelines for the UN and NGOs to follow in carrying out their investigations.

Keywords: International Criminal Court, Networks, International Criminal Law, Investigations, Evidence, Non-Governmental Organizations, United Nations

JEL Classification: K14, K33, K41

Suggested Citation

Baylis, Elena A., Outsourcing Investigations (September 1, 2009). UCLA Journal of International Law and Foreign Affairs, Vol. 14, 2009; U. of Pittsburgh Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2010-20. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1604561

Elena A. Baylis (Contact Author)

University of Pittsburgh - School of Law ( email )

3900 Forbes Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15260
United States

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics