The Defence Committee is mandated to take into consideration the interests of suspects and accused and, through a commentary, provide proposals to the Legal Advisory Committee and advise the Executive Council and the General Assembly on all matters affecting the Defence.
Since September 2018, Mr Geoff Roberts has been Lead Counsel for Anselme Nzabonimpa before the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals and since January 2014, has been assigned as a co-counsel to protect the rights and interests of the Accused Assad Hassan Sabra before the Special Tribunal for Lebanon. Mr Roberts was admitted to the New York Bar in 2006. He holds a Law Degree in English and French Law from King's College London and the Université Paris I, Pantheon-Sorbonne in Paris. He practices internationally, almost exclusively before international and hybrid courts and tribunals. He was admitted to the List of Defence Counsel of the ICC in 2015. He has previously worked as a legal assistant or legal consultant for the Defence teams representing Naser Oric and Rasim Delic at the ICTY, Thomas Lubanga at the ICC and Ieng Sary at the ECCC.
Jennifer Naouri is Co-Counsel at the ICC for Laurent Gbagbo, who was acquitted of all charges in January 2019. As part of the Defence team, she has been involved in every aspect of the case since the beginning, whether legal and procedural developments or the daily management of the team.This experience has given her a concrete and acute understanding of the current challenges faced by Defence teams. She has endeavoured to address these challenges since the creation of the ICCBA, as a founding member and as member of the Counsel Support Staff Committee for three years, in order to ensure that the ICC provide Defence teams with adequate employment conditions. She also advocates for equal gender representation of the profession and, as a result of her training in France (Panthéon-Assas University) and the United States (Columbia University), she is particularly sensitive to the promotion of legal and cultural diversity in the workplace. She has acquired specialized expertise in international criminal law (ICL), international humanitarian law and human rights, from her years working for NGOs (e.g. GISTI, French Red Cross), political institutions (e.g. French Parliament) and through her extensive practice at international criminal tribunals (e.g. ICTY Trial Chamber on the Seselj case). More particularly, as part of the Law firm Emmanuel Altit & Associés, specialized in ICL, she participated in the representation of Hormisdas Nsengimana (acquitted by the ICTR in 2009) and victims before the ECCC. In addition, the law firm represents victims of terrorism and members of communities that have suffered massacres. She has been teaching ICL, both in English and in French, as guest lecturer (University College Roosevelt, Université de Lille II, Université Paris II, Sciences Po, etc.) and as trainer for List Counsel particularly in the context of the ICCBA.
Aidan Ellis has worked for Defence teams at the ICC and ICTY for the last nine years. He practises as a barrister in London and The Hague. He is currently Counsel for the Defence of Saif Al-Islam Gadafi in admissibility proceedings at the ICC. He has previously worked for the Defence team representing Saleh Jerbo and Abdallah Banda (situation in Sudan). He was the editorial assistant on the latest edition of Archbold International Criminal Courts. He has previously served on and chaired the membership committee of the ADC-ICT.
Jim Hodes is a Criminal Defense Attorney based in Atlanta, Georgia and Miami, Florida. He began his legal career as a State Public Defender in Miami in 1990 and was involved in over 100 Trials ranging from Murder and Rape, to Kidnapping and Drug Trafficking; He became a Senior Trial Attorney responsible for a Major Crimes caseload which primarily consisted of murder cases or high-profile media cases in Atlanta. Jim was also a Federal Public Defender in Florida and was a member of the defense team in one of the first federal trials of terrorists in the United States in which his client was ultimately absolved of any criminal responsibility. Jim has also served as a War Crimes Prosecutor at the Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL) where he served as the senior trial attorney in the prosecution of the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC); Subsequent to his work in Sierra Leone Jim spent a year in Cairo, Egypt as a special advisor to the Egyptian government attempting to establish a formal, national criminal defense office. Additionally Jim has served as a trial rapporteur, monitor, and training attorney on behalf of the International Bar Association and the American Bar Association in Zimbabwe, Malawi, the United Arab Emirates, Mongolia and Kosovo. Jim worked in the Atlanta office of the Johnnie Cochran Firm where he was involved in both criminal and civil trials and the development of the Firm’s Latino outreach. During this time the Cochran firm entered into agreements with the Guatemalan and Mexican governments to provide legal support to their foreign nationals throughout the United States. Jim also has an office in Washington, D.C. and currently represents a Guantanamo detainee. Jim’s trial expertise has led to civil judgements in excess of $25,000,000.00 for his clients and acquittals or reduced charges in numerous murder and drug cases over the past several years.
Ancien avocat à la cour suprême de MauritanieReprésentant de l’AIJA en MauritanieAvocat de plusieurs officiers et sous officiers noirs mauritaniens exécutésAncien membre du conseil de l’ordre des avocats du MaliRapporteur National de la commission constitutionnelle de 1992A l’origine de la constitutionnalisation du droit pour chacun à un avocat dès l’enquête préliminaireAvocat du gouvernement du Mali contre Moussa TRAORE et tous les membres de son gouvernement.2ème questeur de la commission électorale nationale du MaliAvocat inscrit sur la liste des conseils de la CPI.
Mikołaj Pietrzak is a Polish advocate with over 20 years of professional experience. He specializes in criminal law, constitutional law and human rights. His experience includes defence and representation of victims in cases concerning terrorism, espionage, murder, corruption, and business crimes. He has extensive experience in self-governance of legal professions. He has taken part in numerous high-profile criminal cases dealing with transjurisdictional and international issues, including as legal representative of Abd Al-Rahim Al Nashiri in the Afghanistan situation proceedings before the ICC. He has participated in many proceedings before the Polish Constitutional Tribunal and the European Court of Human Rights. He regularly appears before the Supreme Court in Poland and has been admitted to the List of Counsel of the ICC and the STL. Mikołaj Pietrzak is the Dean of the Warsaw Bar Association. In 2016 he was appointed by the Secretary-General of the UN to the Board of Trustees of the UN Voluntary Fund for Victims of Torture, and he was the Chairperson of this Board in 2018 and 2019. He is also the former Chairman of the Human Rights Council of the Polish Bar Council. He was awarded the Human Rights Award of the Council of Bars and Law Societies of Europe (CCBE) and is the recipient of the Edward Wende award. He is a member of the European Criminal Bar Association, the National Association of Criminal Defence Lawyers in the USA and the Legal Experts Advisory Panel for Fair Trials International. He speaks English and Polish fluently and communicates proficiently in French.