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Professor Rebecca Hamilton Authors Model Indictment for Crime of Aggression Against Ukraine: Prosecutor v. President Vladimir Putin

Putin’s war against Ukraine, now in its third week, is taking a devastating toll. Professor Rebecca Hamilton co-authored a model criminal indictment, published on Just Security on Monday, charging President Vladimir Putin with the international crime of aggression.

Professor Hamilton explains that the International Criminal Court’s ongoing investigation has jurisdiction over the war crimes being committed in Ukraine, but it does not have jurisdiction over the crime of aggression. “However President Putin shouldn’t be left with the impression that this means he won’t be held accountable for what the Nuremberg Judgement described as ‘the supreme international crime’” said Hamilton. 

Hamilton said she hopes the model indictment provides a demonstration of what is possible in other forums, representing that kind of document that prosecutors could file before a special international tribunal or national court. “Today Putin may feel he is invincible, but the evidentiary record is being built against him.”