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Part IV Transnational Organised Crime as Matter of Certain Branches of International Law, 19 Transnational Criminal Organisations and Human Rights

Math Noortmann, Dawn Sedman

From: International Law and Transnational Organised Crime

Edited By: Pierre Hauck, Sven Peterke

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2015. All Rights Reserved.date: 04 December 2020

Since World War II — Freedom of association — Freedom of expression — Organized crime

Transnational criminal organisations and human rights are in a dialectical relationship. Organisations can be subjected to criminal investigations and criminalization, while at the same time be protected by such rights as the right to association and free speech. While successful criminal prosecution of organisations is rare, as demonstrated by the war-crime tribunals since the Second World War, the criminalizing of organisations such as biker gangs and armed opposition groups is a more common, however questionable, option for governments. To the extent that criminal organisations are considered, first of all, to commit crimes and are investigated and prosecuted within that legal framework, the question what the concept of criminal organisations committing human rights violations would bring is a pertinent one. Crimes and human rights are different legal conceptions and should not be confused in the ‘war against organised crime’.

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