Recognising criminal liability of companies under intl. law would deter complicity, says academic

Author: Nadia Bernaz, Middlesex University School of Law on RightsasUsual, Published on: 24 May 2016

"The Developing Notion of Corporate Criminal Liability under International Law: a presentation at Copenhagen Business School", 24 May 2016

On Friday 20 May I had the pleasure to participate to a workshop on business and human rights...at Copenhagen Business School. I presented on the developing notion of corporate criminal liability under international law...[A]t the moment, when corporations become complicit with international crimes...(genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes), international law has...an imperfect response: it focuses only on individual perpetrators...[I]t doesn’t fully address issues related to corporate culture and corporate governance which are key in the commission of crimes...Focusing on individuals only does not give a full picture and therefore may only partially provide the deterrent effect that human rights advocates hope for...Corporate criminal liability under international law could be officially recognised in three main ways... It could be included in the future business and human rights treaty...A separate treaty criminalising certain corporate conduct, but leaving it to states to prosecute, could be adopted...It could be included in the Statute of the International Criminal Court, through an amendment procedure...[Refers to Unocal]

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Related companies: Unocal (part of Chevron)