Epistemological Controversies and Evaluation of Evidence in International Criminal Trials
Forthcoming, Kevin Jon Heller, Frédéric Mégret, Sarah Nouwen, Jens David Ohlin and Darryl Robinson (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of International Criminal Law (OUP 2019)
22 Pages Posted: 23 Jan 2019
Date Written: January 10, 2019
International criminal trials are normally very complex and burdened with vast amounts of evidence. Even though such trials may face distinct challenges as compared to trials in domestic settings, the challenges and process of evaluating evidence have still much in common regardless if the trial is before a domestic or international court. Many old debates on evidence that have taken place in domestic settings - and in some cases been settled - have made a comeback in the practice and scholarship on international criminal justice together with new debates. This chapter gives an account of current controversies in evaluating evidence in international criminal trials, including whether the evaluation of evidence should be subject to an intuitive holistic approach or deconstruction? Is the standard of proof for conviction subjective or objective? Is it possible and/or desirable to use mathematical methods in evaluating evidence? The chapter also covers the criticism against the “beyond reasonable doubt” standard and whether fact-finding at the international level is possible at all.
Keywords: International criminal trials; beyond reasonable doubt
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