Legal Responses to Transnational and International Crimes
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Legal Responses to Transnational and International Crimes

Towards an Integrative Approach

Edited by Harmen Van der Wilt and Christophe Paulussen

This book critically reflects on the relationship between ‘core crimes’ which make up the subject matter jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court (such as war crimes, crimes against humanity, genocide, and aggression) and transnational crimes. The contributions in the book address the features of several transnational crimes and generally acknowledge that the boundaries between core crimes and transnational crimes are blurring. One of the major questions is whether, in view of this gradual merger of the categories, the distinction in legal regime is still warranted. Should prosecution and trial of transnational crimes be transferred from national to international jurisdictions?
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Chapter 10: Prosecuting money laundering at the ICC: can it stop the funding of international criminal organisations?

Dirk van Leeuwen


This chapter deals with the question whether money laundering as a criminal offence should be added to the catalogue of international crimes that the International Criminal Court (ICC) deals with. It has been suggested that including it would provide an effective tool to stop money flowing to criminal organisations in the business of committing international crimes and terrorism. The chapter concludes that it is, at this time, not fruitful to include the crime. Money laundering is not suited to stop money flows as it has the tendency to look back and examine whether there is a predicate crime, instead of looking forward and ask whether the purpose of the money is criminal in nature. Additionally, the current subject-matter jurisdiction of the Court provides for too small a catalogue of possible predicate crimes for money laundering and the Court has too few possibilities to execute search, seizure and confiscation measures. The possible prevention of positive jurisdiction conflicts also has not yielded a strong argument for inclusion of money laundering as an ICC-crime.

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