ICC prosecutor Khan co-authored essay saying defendants can’t get fair shake at world court: report

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JERUSALEM – The British chief prosecutor Karim Khan for the International Criminal Court (ICC) published an academic essay in 2013 that suggested his own current effort to arrest Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu would be a travesty of justice because the court cannot provide due process to defendants. 

The Washington, D.C.-based Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) located Khan’s essay, which was published by Duke University’s Law School, and analyzed key elements of the academic paper.

Yigal Carmon, the founder and president of MEMRI, wrote that Khan’s essay, titled “Defensive Practices: Representing Clients Before the International Criminal Court,” revealed that “The ICC is incapable of delivering justice.”

Carmon cited passages from the essay that Khan co-authored with the attorney Anand A. Shah, who is listed as a member of the New York State Bar.


Khan’s academic paper places big question marks over whether defendants, who are hauled before the world court, can secure a fair trial. 

In one telling example of the cards allegedly being stacked against the defendant at the ICC, Khan wrote “[ICC procedures] allow[s] the prosecutor to submit and rely on anonymous summaries of witness evidence that may be significantly lacking in substance, coherence, or both…”

With respect to heightened publicity and media buzz, Khan argued in his essay that the defendant faces another obstacle to a fair judicial process at the ICC. “In the case of a client suspected or accused of committing international crimes, the public perception of the client’s guilt is often further magnified by the assistance of well-financed civil-society groups, nongovernmental organizations, and international media pushing a narrative that becomes accepted as the ‘truth’ even before the client appears in court.”

Khan also noted deficiencies with the evidentiary rules at the ICC. He wrote “The applicable standard of proof at the confirmation stage – ‘sufficient evidence to establish substantial grounds to believe’ – is, of course, lower than the beyond-a-reasonable-doubt standard required to obtain a conviction at the trial stage.”

The ICC is located in The Hague, Netherlands. 

Earlier this month, Khan asked the ICC to issue arrest warrants against Netanyahu and Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant for alleged war crimes during the Jewish state’s campaign to defeat the Hamas terrorist movement in the Gaza Strip.


In 2007, Khan was also on the verge of being held in contempt by the ICC during his representation of former Liberian President Charles Taylor, who was accused of carrying out war crimes in Sierra Leone. 

The presiding judge warned Khan at the time that “your code of conduct cannot override a court order which I made a few minutes ago,” and the court “directed Khan to sit down.” The judge “invited the prosecution to continue with its opening statement” when Khan shunned the legal proceeding. He “dramatically picked up his materials and walked out of the courtroom,” according to The Cambridge companion to International Criminal Law. The ICC convicted Taylor in 2012.

Hamas invaded Israel on Oct. 7 and massacred nearly 1,200 people, including more than 30 Americans. Hamas also kidnapped over 250 people. The jihadi terrorist organization is currently holding 125 hostages in Gaza.

Tal Heinrich, a spokeswoman for Israel’s government, told Fox News Digital that the ICC is waging a “vicious smear” campaign against Israeli leaders. She said Israel’s government has not yet read Khan’s 2013 essay or the MEMRI report.

Heinrich added that the ICC will not deter Israel from its plan to defeat the Hamas terrorist movement. Netanyahu said about the ICC arrest warrant that “this is what the new antisemitism looks like.”


Fox News Digital sent numerous Email press queries to Khan and the ICC. Multiple Fox News Digital telephone calls to the ICC were not returned.

Fadi El Abdallah, a spokesman for the ICC, told Fox News Digital via WhatsApp text message about the lack of response from the prosecutor’s office that “They may be busy. Thank you for your understanding.” He added in a second WhatsApp message “I [c]ant (sic) be of further assistance as it is something for the Prosecutor’s team to respond to your inquiry.” Efforts to reach Khan’s co-author, Shah, were not successful.