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Grave Crimes And Weak Evidence: Fact-Finding Evolution In International Criminal Law, Nancy Amoury Combs Jan 2017

Grave Crimes And Weak Evidence: Fact-Finding Evolution In International Criminal Law, Nancy Amoury Combs

Faculty Publications

International criminal courts carry out some of the most important work that a legal system can conduct: prosecuting those who have visited death and destruction on millions. Despite the significance of their work--or perhaps because of it--international courts face tremendous challenges. Chief among them is accurate fact-finding. With alarming regularity, international criminal trials feature inconsistent, vague, and sometimes false testimony that renders judges unable to assess with any measure of certainty who did what to whom in the context of a mass atrocity. This Article provides the first-ever empirical study quantifying fact-finding in an international criminal court. The study shines ...


Circumventing Congress: How The Federal Courts Opened The Door To Impeaching Criminal Defendants With Prior Convictions, Jeffrey Bellin Dec 2008

Circumventing Congress: How The Federal Courts Opened The Door To Impeaching Criminal Defendants With Prior Convictions, Jeffrey Bellin

Faculty Publications

This Article spotlights the flawed analytical framework at the heart of the federal courts’ approach to one of the most controversial trial practices in American criminal jurisprudence — the admission of prior convictions to impeach the credibility of defendants who testify. As the Article explains, the flawed approach is a byproduct of the courts’ reliance on a five-factor analytical framework to implement the governing legal standard enacted by Congress in Federal Rule of Evidence 609. Tracing the evolution of the fivefactor framework from its roots in pre-Rule 609 case law, the Article demonstrates that the courts’ reinterpretation of the framework in ...