Michael E. Hartmann has been director of rule of law for the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan since 2013. Previously, in 2012 and 2013, he served as senior crown prosecutor (barrister) and war crimes coordinator for Australia’s Regional Assistance Mission to the Solomon Islands. From 2008 to 2010, he was criminal justice program manager for the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and from 2005 to 2007 adviser to the attorney general of Afghanistan for the U.S. State Department’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs Justice Sector Support Program. The first UN-appointed international prosecutor for Kosovo, Hartmann served in that capacity from 2000 to 2005, appealing before Kosovo’s Supreme Court and investigating and prosecuting trials of genocide, war crimes, terrorism, corruption, assassinations, rape, and ethnic hate crimes. From 1998 to 2000, he was team leader for the UN Mission in Bosnia and Herzegovina’s Judicial System Assessment Program and Bosnia field representative for UNODC’s anticorruption project. In 2003, he was a senior fellow at the United States Institute of Peace and in 1996 was the Senior Fulbright Law Scholar in Pakistan. From 1983 to 1998, Hartmann was an assistant district attorney in San Francisco.
This path-breaking volume fills a major gap in the literature on efforts to rebuild societies emerging from conflict. Drawing on firsthand experience in tackling organized and other destabilizing crime in Kosovo, Bosnia, Afghanistan, Iraq, and elsewhere, it distills that practical, hard-won knowledge into lessons and guidance for policymakers and practitioners who must face similar challenges. No similar work exists anywhere.
"Serious crimes" include any and all criminal acts that threaten post-conflict security, hinder political and economic reconstruction, or undermine public trust in nascent criminal justice institutions. From money laundering to murder, drug trafficking to terrorism, these crimes flourish where governments are impotent or officials are themselves complicit in illegal activities. Their impact on post-conflict societies of all types can be profoundly damaging--but they can be dealt with.
More than forty seasoned practitioners--judges and generals, prosecutors and human rights activists, scholars and government officials from across the world--participated in the discussions that generated the broad guidelines and more specific prescriptions presented in this handbook. Each of its chapters covers a different area of activity--initial assessment, reform of the legal framework, institutional reform, investigation and prosecution of serious crimes, and foreign assistance--providing not only general guidance but also real-life examples to illustrate the importance of adapting to local circumstances.
Easy to read and easy to use, with checklists and sidebars supplementing the succinct text, Combating Serious Crimes will be greatly appreciated by governments, international and regional organizations, and foreign assistance providers throughout the world. The police, judges, prosecutors, defense counsel and peacekeepers who address serious crimes on a day-to-day basis in post-conflict states will likewise find the book invaluable.