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‘Legal Avenues to Prosecute a US Citizen for War Crimes—The Case of Gotabaya Rajapaksa’

Ryan Goodman, Professor of Law and Co-Chair of the Center for Human Rights and Global Justice at New York University School of Law has called on the United States to prosecute Gotabhaya Rajapaksa for war crimes, highlighting various laws that the administration may be able to pursue charges against the Sri Lankan Defence Secretary.

Writing in Just Security this week, Goodman stated that Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, a US citizen, could face charges under the War Crimes Act of 1996, as well as coming under investigation from other agencies for immigration fraud and possible tax evasion.

Goodman added that the Justice Department could also consider pursuing civil liability, for charges such as “torture committed by a US citizen abroad of foreign nationals” and witness tampering.

His piece is the second in a series arising out of a presentation he made to a US Congressional briefing earlier this year.

See his full opinion piece here.

Also see our earlier posts:

US should push prosecution of individuals in Sri Lanka - Congressional Caucus hears (18 July 2014)

Sri Lanka’s Greatest War Criminal (Gotabaya) is a US Citizen: It’s Time to Hold Him Accountable (21 May 2014)