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Durham Law School

Staff profile

Professor Michael Bohlander, A. jur. Dr. jur. Richter am Landgericht a.D. SFHEA FRSA

Chair in Comparative and International Criminal Law in Durham Law School
Chair in Comparative and International Criminal Law, Durham Law School
Member of the Human Rights Centre

(email at michael.bohlander@durham.ac.uk)

Biography

 

Professor Bohlander is currently on leave from Durham University and serving as the International Co-Investigating Judge in the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia. His candidature was submitted to the United Nations by the German Government; he was subsequently nominated for the post by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. After the approval of the Cambodian Supreme Council of the Magistracy, King Norodom Sihamoni of Cambodia appointed him to the ECCC bench by Royal Decree of 31 July 2015.

On 7 February 2017, the Head of the EULEX Mission in Kosovo, upon the nomination by the German Government and following the recommendation of an independent international selection panel, appointed him to the roster of judges of the Kosovo Specialist Chambers. 

He regrets that during his absence from Durham, due to United Nations regulations, he will not be able to take on any new postgraduate or visiting research students. 

From July 1991 until joining the Law School in September 2004, Professor Bohlander had been a civil and criminal pre-trial, trial and appellate judge in the courts of the East German Free State of Thuringia, in the transitional stage after German unification. He sat on proceedings dealing with regime crime in the former GDR, includig cases involving the use of minefields at the former inner-German border, the cassation of politically motivated judgments of former GDR courts and the rehabilitation of persons who had been convicted for political reasons; his general criminal docket covered serious crime such as, for example, murder, rape, child sexual abuse and armed robbery, both in the juvenile and adult courts. His civil docket encompassed general civil matters, construction and insurance law, as well as medical malpractice litigation.

From October 1989 to April 1990, he served a pupillage at Walnut House Chambers in Exeter, mainly in criminal cases. In 1996, he was a judicial visitor at a Juzgado de Primera Instancia e Instrucción in Gandía, Spain. From 1999 until 2001 he was on leave from the Thuringian judiciary and served as the senior legal officer of a Trial Chamber at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia in the Hague.

He helped train the judges of the Iraqi High Tribunal which tried Saddam Hussein and has been active in judicial training and advising governments in transitional contexts since 2001 (Egypt, Georgia, Kosovo, Kurdistan/Iraq, Tunisia) at the request of the International Bar Association, the OSCE, the United Nations, for the EU, the Kurdistan Regional Government and for the German Foundation for International Legal Cooperation. As a member of that Foundation he assisted in the initiation of training links with the Court of Appeal and the Ministry of Justice of the Kingdom of Cambodia.

His publications have been widely cited by and before courts and authorities in several domestic and international jurisdictions, including the Constitutional Courts of Germany and Colombia, the Federal Court of Justice and several State Supreme Courts in Germany, the Court of Criminal Appeals of Texas, the Supreme Court of the Australian Capital Territory, the International Criminal Court, the Residual Mechanism for International Criminal Tribunals, as well as the criminal tribunals for Yugoslavia, Sierra Leone, Lebanon, Rwanda and Cambodia. His work has also been referred to by Law Reform Commissions in Ireland, Scotland, Australia and New Zealand, and by the Federal German Parliament.

He has been invited to speak at numerous conferences, seminars and training events at home and abroad, including in Armenia, Canada, China, Croatia, Egypt, Georgia, Germany, Iraq/Kurdistan, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Kuwait, Lebanon, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, the United States (including the Military Academy at West Point), Tanzania (at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda in Arusha) and Tunisia.

Professor Bohlander's main research interests lie in international and comparative criminal law, including their linguistic and cultural aspects, as well as their link to transitional justice issues.

The German Federal Ministry of Justice lists his English translations of the German Criminal Code and of the Act on International Cooperation in Criminal Matters on its official website. The translation of the German Criminal Code was translated into Farsi and published in Iran in 2010, followed by the translation of his monograph "Principles of German Criminal Law" in 2011, which is currently also being translated into Chinese. A Farsi translation of his book "Principles of German Criminal Procedure" is also in preparation.

Professor Bohlander is the founding editor-in chief and since 2015 General Editor of the International Criminal Law Review, the general editor of Studies in International and Comparative Criminal Law with Hart Publishing and a member of the editorial board of the Journal of Criminal Law, as well as on a number of advisory boards. Together with Alan Reed, Nicola Wake and Emma Engleby of Northumbria Law School, and barrister Verity Adams, he edits the series Substantive Issues in Criminal Law with Taylor & Francis.

From 2010 - 2014, Professor Bohlander was the Visiting Chair in Criminal Law at the Rijksuniversiteit Groningen in the Netherlands. In 2012, he was the first non-Muslim visiting scholar ever to teach at the Faculty of Law of Al-Azhar University in Cairo.

He holds two State Examinations in Law from the Ministry of Justice of the Saarland (1986 and 1990); in 1992 he obtained the degree of Dr. iur. from the Faculty of Law of the University of the Saarland, with a study on the topic of how the duty solicitor schemes in England/Wales and Scotland could inform the practice of access to counsel in the police investigation stage in German criminal procedure.

 

 

Research Interests

  • International criminal justice - Theory, practice, political and socio-legal implications
  • Comparative criminal law
  • General comparative law
  • Transitional justice
  • The Judiciary - Comparative, international and socio-legal aspects

Selected Publications

Authored book

Book review

  • Bohlander, Michael (2018). Book review of Albin Eser, Comparative criminal law, 2017. International Criminal Law Review
  • Bohlander, Michael (2009). Otto Triffterer (ed.), Commentary on the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, 2nd ed., 2008. International Criminal Law Review 855-857.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2009). Tahir Wasti, The Application of Islamic Criminal Law in Pakistan - Sharia in Practice, 2009. International Criminal Law Review 858-859.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2008). Boas/Bischoff/Reid, International Law Practitioner Library, Vol. I: Forms of Responsibility in International Criminal Law, 2007. International Criminal Law Review 710-711.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2008). Christopher W. Mullins & Dawn L. Rothe, Blood, Power and Bedlam - Violations of International Criminal Law in Post-Colonial Africa, 2008. International Criminal Law Review 707-708.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2008). Cyril Laucci, Digest of the Jurisprudence of the Special Court for Sierra Leone 2003 - 2005, 2007. International Criminal Law Review 385-386.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2008). Cyril Laucci, The Annotated Digest of the International Criminal Court 2004 - 2006, 2007. International Criminal Law Review 710.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2008). Dawn Rothe & Christopher Mullins, Symbolic Gestures and the Generation of Global Social Control, 2006. International Criminal Law Review 384-385.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2008). Frank Neubacher/Anne Klein (eds.), Vom Recht der Macht zur Macht des Rechts: Interdisziplinäre Beiträge zur Zukunft internationaler Strafgerichte, 2006. International Criminal Law Review 383-384.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2008). Geert-Jan A. Knoops, Defenses in Contemporary International Criminal Law, 2008. International Criminal Law Review 711-712.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2008). George P. Fletcher, The Grammar of Criminal Law, Volume One: Foundations, 2007. International Criminal Law Review 699-705.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2008). Karsten Gaede, Fairness als Teilhabe - Das Recht auf konkrete und wirksame Teilhabe durch Verteidigung gemäß Art. 6 EMRK, 2007. International Criminal Law Review 386.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2008). Manuel Ladiges, Die Bekämpfung nicht-staatlicher Angreifer im Luftraum, 2007. International Criminal Law Review 708.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2008). Mashood Baderin, International Law and Islamic Law, 2008. International Criminal Law Review 711.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2008). Michael Schmitt/Jelena Pejic (eds.), International Law and Armed Conflict: Exploring the Faultlines, 2007. International Criminal Law Review 708-709.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2008). Ndiva Kofele-Kale, The International Law of Responsibility for Economic Crimes - Holding State Officials Individually Liable for Acts of Fraudulent Enrichment, 2006. International Criminal Law Review 385.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2008). Peter J. Richards, Extraordinary Justice - Military Tribunals in Historical and International Context, 2007. International Criminal Law Review 706-707.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2008). Ruth A. Kok, Statutory Limitations in International Criminal Law, 2007. International Criminal Law Review 705-706.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2008). Stefan van Heeck, Die Weiterentwicklung des formellen Völkerstrafrechts, 2006. International Criminal Law Review 386.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2008). Vladimir Tochilovsky, Jurisprudence of the International Criminal Court and the European Court of Human Rights, Procedure and Evidence, 2008. International Criminal Law Review 709.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2007). Das amerikanische Strafverfahren als Element der Besatzungspolitik in Deutschland, 2005. International Criminal Law Review 549-550.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2007). Kreß/Broomhall/Lattanzi/Santori (eds.), The Rome Statute and Domestic Legal Orders, Vol. II, 2005. International Criminal Law Review 550.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2007). Van Baarda/Verweij (eds.), Military Ethics, The Dutch Approach: A Practical Guide, 2006. International Criminal Law Review 550-551.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2005). Christine van den Wyngaert/Guy Stessens/Liesbeth Janssens (eds.) International Criminal Law, A Collection of International and European Instruments, 3rd revised edition, 2005. International Criminal Law Review 502.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2005). Esin Örücü, The Enigma of Comparative Law, Variations on a Theme for the Twenty-First Century, 2004. International Criminal Law Review 505-506.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2005). Francis Pakes, Comparative Criminal Justice, 2004. International Criminal Law Review 503-504.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2005). Héctor Olásolo, Corte Penal Internacional, Dónde Investigar?, 2003. International Criminal Law Review 506.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2005). International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, Judicial Reports 2000, Parts 1 and 2, 2005. International Criminal Law Review 502.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2005). Jan Schlösser, Soziale Tatherrschaft, Ein Beitrag zur Frage der Täterschaft in organisatorischen Machtapparaten, 2004. International Criminal Law Review 503.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2005). Mireille Delmas-Marty, Towards a Truly Common Law, Europe as a Laboratory for Legal Pluralism, 2002. International Criminal Law Review 504-505.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2005). Rachel Kerr, The International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, An Exercise in Law, Politics and Diplomacy, 2004. International Criminal Law Review 506-510.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2005). Rob Blekxtoon/Wouter van Ballegooij (eds.), Handbook on the European Arrest Warrant, 2005. International Criminal Law Review 502-503.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2004). Gerd Hankel, Die Leipziger Prozesse, Deutsche Kriegsverbrechen und ihre strafrechtliche Verfolgung nach dem Ersten Weltkrieg, 2003. International Criminal Law Review 551.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2004). ICTY, Judicial Reports 1997, vols 1 and 2, United Nations, 2004. International Criminal Law Review 549.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2004). Jean Pradel, Droit pénal comparé, 2nd edition, 2002. International Criminal Law Review 130-131.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2004). John R.W.D. Jones and Steven Powles, International Criminal Practice, 3rd edition, 2003. International Criminal Law Review 550.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2004). M. Cherif Bassiouni (ed.), Post-Conflict Justice, 2002. International Criminal Law Review 123-124.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2004). M. Cherif Bassiouni, Introduction to International Criminal Law, 2003. International Criminal Law Review 550.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2004). Mireille Delmas-Marty & John R. Spencer (eds.), European Criminal Procedures, 2002. International Criminal Law Review 129-130.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2004). Muhammad Abdel Haleem/Adel Omar Sherif/Kate Daniels (eds.), Criminal Justice in Islam, Judicial Procedure in the Shari’a, 2003. International Criminal Law Review 551-552.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2004). Patricia Schneider, Internationale Gerichtsbarkeit als Instrument friedlicher Streitbeilegung, Von einer empirisch fundierten Theorie zu einem innovativen Konzept, 2003. International Criminal Law Review 124-125.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2004). Peter J. van Koppen & Steven D. Penrod (eds.), Adversarial versus Inquisitorial Justice, Psychological Perspectives on Criminal Justice Systems, 2003. International Criminal Law Review 125-128.
  • Bohlander, Michael. (2004). Review of Robert W. Bennett, Talking it Through - Puzzles of American Democracy. Swiss Political Science Review 125.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2004). Richard May & Marieke Wierda, International Criminal Evidence, 2002. International Criminal Law Review 120-121.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2004). Robert Esser, Auf dem Weg zu einem europäischen Strafverfahrensrecht, 2002. International Criminal Law Review 128-129.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2004). Rodney Dixon & Karim Khan, Archbold International Criminal Courts, Practice, Procedure & Evidence, 2003. International Criminal Law Review 121-123.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2003). Comparative Criminal Procedure, A Casebook Approach, Stephen C. Thaman, 2002. International Criminal Law Review 187-188.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2003). Neighbours in Law – Are Common Law and Civil Law Moving Closer Together?, Papers in honour of Barbara Huber on her 65th birthday, Albin Eser/Christiane Rabenstein (eds.), 2001. International Criminal Law Review 188-189.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2003). Towards an International Criminal Procedure, Christoph Safferling, 2001. International Criminal Law Review 183-187.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2002). Annotated Leading Cases of International Criminal Tribunals, André Klip and Göran Sluiter (eds.), vols. I (ICTY 1993–1998), 1999, II (ICTR 1994–1999), 2001, and III (ICTY 1997–1999), 2001. International Criminal Law Review 414-415.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2002). Basic Documents and Case Law 1995–2000, International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, CD-ROM, United Nations, 2001. International Criminal Law Review 415-416.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2002). Craig M. Bradley, Criminal Procedure - A Worldwide Study, 1999. International Criminal Law Review 373-374.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2002). Defenses in Contemporary International Criminal Law, Geert-Jan G.J. Knoops, 2001. International Criminal Law Review 419.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2002). Der Allgemeine Teil des Völkerstrafrechts, Ansätze einer Dogmatisierung, Kai Ambos, 2002. International Criminal Law Review 417-418.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2002). European Criminal Law, Geert Corstens and Jean Pradel, 2002. International Criminal Law Review 416-417.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2002). ICTY Judicial Reports/TPIR Recueils Judiciaires 1996, vols. I and II, 2002. International Criminal Law Review 420.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2002). International and National Prosecutions of Crimes Under International Law, Current Developments, Horst Fischer, Claus Kreß and Sascha Rolf Lüder (eds.), 2001. International Criminal Law Review 412-414.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2002). International Criminal Law, A Collection of International and European Instruments, Christine van den Wyngaert (ed.), 2nd ed., 2000. International Criminal Law Review 451.
  • Bohander, Michael (2002). International Criminal Law, Cases and Materials & Documents Supplement, Jordan J. Paust, M. Cherif Bassiouni, Michael Scharf, Jimmy Gurulé, Leila Sadat, Bruce Zagaris and Sharon A. Williams, 2000. International Criminal Law Review 411-412.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2002). International Criminal Law, Ilias Bantekas/Susan Nash and Mark Mackarel, 2001. International Criminal Law Review 410-411.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2002). International Criminal Law, Kriangsak Kittichaisaree, 2001. International Criminal Law Review 418-419.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2002). The Global Community Yearbook of International Law and Jurisprudence 2001, 2001. International Criminal Law Review 420-421.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2002). The International Criminal Court and the Transformation of International Law – Justice for the New Millenium, Leila Nadya Sadat, 2002. International Criminal Law Review 417.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2002). The International Criminal Court, Elements of Crimes and Rules of Procedure and Evidence, Roy S. Lee (ed.), 2001. International Criminal Law Review 419-420.
  • Bohlander, Michael (2001). Joint review of John E. Ackerman/Eugene O'Sullivan, Practice and Procedure of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, 2000, and John R.W.D. Jones, The Practice of the International Criminal Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda, 2000. International Criminal Law Review 173-176.

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