Trial attorneys around the world face the problem of how to confront a witness whose live testimony contradicts his prior statements. U.S. prosecutors take refuge under Federal Rule of Evidence 613 and the Harris doctrine, which permit inadmissible hearsay and illegally obtained statements to be used to impeach a witness’s live testimony. No similar rule aids prosecutors at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY). Recent divergent decisions regarding the use of inconsistent statements for impeachment purposes have left ICTY prosecutors struggling to prove cases against the most heinous criminals in history. This Note argues that the ICTY should adopt a new evidentiary rule akin to the United States’ Rule 613 and the Harris doctrine. Adoption of a new rule would more efficiently balance the prosecutor’s duty to prove the case against the accused’s right not to be convicted by otherwise inadmissible evidence.
Elizabeth M. DiPardo,
Caught in a Web of Lies: Use of Prior Inconsistent Statements to Impeach Witnesses Before the ICTY,
B.C. Int'l & Comp. L. Rev.