British lawyer asked to defend Saddam against war crimes charges

[JURIST] Anthony Scrivener [profile], a former chairman of the UK's Bar Council [group website], has been asked by Saddam Hussein's family to represent the former Iraqi dictator at his upcoming trial [JURIST news archive]. Perhaps Scrivener's most famous case was his work on the legal team representing the Guildford Four [BBC backgrounder]. Four innocent men were convicted of a 1975 pub bombing, but their convictions were overturned 15 years later when a court ruled that police misconduct, including torture and fabrications, had tainted their confessions. Lawyers already attached to Saddam's defense plan to argue [Guardian report] that the Iraqi Special Tribunal [offical website] itself is illegal since it was set up by an occupying power, and that Hussein should have sovereign immunity. Scrivener wrote in 2004 [Independent commentary] that the trial had "already degenerated into the realms of a promising theatrical farce," and has not yet decided whether to lead the defense team. BBC News has more.

ALSO ON JURIST

 Op-ed: Trying Saddam Hussein: Go International or Not? | Video: Iraq: Sovereignty, Security and Justice


 

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.