26 Ga. J. Int'l & Comp. L. 263 (1996-1997)
The Erdemovic Sentencing Judgement: A Questionable Milestone for the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

handle is hein.journals/gjicl26 and id is 277 raw text is: GEORGIA JOURNAL OF INTERNATIONAL AND COMPARATIVE LAW
VOLUME 26                   1997                   NuMBER 2

THE ERDEMOVIC SENTENCING JUDGEMENT: A
QUESTIONABLE MILESTONE FOR THE INTERNATIONAL
CRIMINAL TRIBUNAL FOR THE FORMER YUGOSLAVIA
Sienho Yee*
On November 29, 1996, Trial Chamber I of the International Criminal
Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) handed down its first sentence:
ten years of imprisonment for a crime against humanity, to which Drazen
Erdemovic was said to have pleaded guilty (the Sentencing Judgement).'
Erdemovic is the first person sentenced by the ICTY and the first sentenced
by an international war crimes tribunal since the Nuremberg and Tokyo trials
after World War II; as a result, the Sentencing Judgement is a milestone for
the ICTY.
Milestone though it may be, I respectfully submit that the Sentencing
Judgement is a questionable one. The process leading to the sentencing,
* Member of the New York Bar. J.D., 1993, Columbia Law School. Opinions and errors
are personal to the author and shall not be attributed to any organization. The author is not
professionally involved in the Erdemovic case discussed herein. This Essay was completed
when Erdemovic's appeal was pending before the Appeals Chamber and was submitted to that
Chamber and the parties on May 22, 1997. Subsequent developments in the case are not
discussed herein. For various assistance, the author is indebted to Ms. Ingrid Kost and her
colleagues at the Peace Palace Library in The Hague, to several friends, especially Andreas
Paulus who was so generous to read and comment on an earlier draft and to the editors of the
Georgia Journal of International and Comparative Law. The author is also grateful to
Nosiam Elleafar for giving him a good illustration of fair justice. Comments may be sent to
the author at: sienho@msn.com.
' Sentencing Judgement, Prosecutor v. Erdemovic, Case No. IT-96-22-T (ICTY, Trial Ch.
I, Nov. 29, 1996) [hereinafter Sentencing Judgement]. The British spelling of judgement
is used in the phrase Sentencing Judgement because it is used in the ICTY documents. The
Statute of the ICTY was originally an annex to the Report of the Secretary-General, U.N.
Doc. S/25704 (1993), and will be referred to as ICTY Statute or the Statute. The Rules
of Procedure and Evidence of the ICTY, U.N. Doc. IT/32/Rev. 9, will be referred to as
ICTY Rules.

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