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Prosecuting Corporate Pillage
Author: Hasan Dindjer, Rights Watch (UK), Published on: 11 January 2014
Pillage is a war crime...[and] is both a serious breach of the laws of war...and, as resource-fuelled wars across the world attest, one that sustains some particularly brutal conflicts...[H]ow can corporations that buy pillaged resources themselves be held legally accountable?...[Recently] Swiss authorities launched a criminal investigation into the gold refiner Argor-Hareaus following a complaint [which alleges] that gold pillaged by the FNI, an armed group in the DRC, was sold...to Argor. [The company] vigorously denies the allegations...The complaint also alleges the “direct involvement” of Jersey-based Hussar Ltd...[and] Hussar Services Ltd...The results of the investigation [have been passed] on to the UK authorities and the Jersey authorities. [In the UK] pillage is incorporated as a domestic criminal offence by the International Criminal Court Act 2001, [but] the question remains whether corporations can be prosecuted under the ICC Act at all...
Related companies: Argor-Heraeus