The Case Matrix Network (CMN) provides knowledge-transfer and capacity development services to national and international actors in the fields of international criminal and human rights law.
We seek to empower those working to provide criminal accountability for violations of core international crimes and serious human rights violations, by providing access to legal information, legal expertise and knowledge tools.
This is done in two ways. First, CMN Advisers provide probono assistance to the ICC Legal Tools Project by conducting training in the use of the ICC Case Matrix and the ICC Legal Tools Database. Second, the CMN has developed a CMN Knowledge Hub consisting of several online services which are now supplemented by new databases, features, publications and services. This includes four International Criminal Justice Toolkits which combine databases, publications and services. Each Toolkit is customised to different stages of criminal proceedings, by country, by key cross-cutting issues (such as crimes, liabilities or tribunals) as well as by free-standing databases or publications.
Investigation and Fact-Finding Toolkit:
Effective investigation of core international crimes by national justice actors forms the core of any accountability effort. The process of fact-finding and investigation of core international crimes and serious human rights violations is complex. The relationship between specific incidents and wider violations or patterns must be established and linked to groups and individual suspects. This involves high quantities of information, of different categories and sources, often gathered in real-time as the violations unfold as well as after considerable time has elapsed.
The Investigation and Fact-Finding Toolkit aims to provide national investigators and fact-finders, including NGOs, with practical and substantive knowledge and skills to effectively and objectively document and investigate core international crimes and serious human rights violations.
Case Mapping, Selection and Prioritisation Toolkit
Criminal justice institutions are frequently overwhelmed by the scale of core international crimes and gross human rights violations, which often require the adoption of management tools capable of responding to this challenge. Without such tools, large backlogs of reported violations or open case files may arise, leading to lack of accountability. Moreover, where many violations have occurred, national justice systems will need to prioritise or even select cases for criminal investigation and prosecution, possibly alongside other measures of accountability and justice. The ICC system of justice encourages the criminal prosecution of individuals who bear the greatest responsibility for the most serious crimes.
The Case Mapping, Selection and Prioritisation Toolkit aims to support comprehensive mapping and analysis of open case files, including the identification and review of bottlenecks of cases. This enables accurate and transparent information of all open case files, which can support the prioritisation or the selection of case files for criminal investigation and prosecution, as well as effective real-time monitoring of the progression of cases.
Case Analysis Toolkit
The preparation and adjudication of individual cases of core international crimes and serous human rights violations requires efficient evidence management and analysis, in order to ensure that the case proceeds fairly, accurately and without undue delay. The facts and evidence of each case must be analysed against the legal requirements of the crimes and liabilities that have been attributed to each person, in order to demonstrate that each of the elements of the crimes and liabilities have been proven to the required evidentiary threshold. Core international crimes are genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes and aggression; as well as liabilities that establish individual criminal responsibility consist of multiple layers of legal requirements, many of which may be unfamiliar to national criminal justice actors.
The Case Analysis Toolkit responds to these challenges, to provide analysis of the legal requirements of core international crimes, using international case law and doctrine. It also incorporates the I-DOC and DOCF Tools to support the work processes of case preparation and management.
Ratification, Implementation and Cooperation Toolkit
Although more than 120 States have ratified the ICC Statute of the International Criminal Court, around 70 countries are yet to join the Court, excluding roughly 65% of the world's population from its reach. To date, more than 60 States Parties do not have co-operation legislation, which can restrict their capacity to co-operate with the ICC. This has a direct impact on the ability of the ICC to enforce its decisions: as the Court does not have a police force of its own it entirely depends on State co-operation. Equally, a similar number of States are yet to criminalise core international crimes in their national legislation, which can limit their ability to investigate and prosecute the conduct proscribed by the ICC Statute. The Ratification, Implementation and Co-operation Toolkit aims to provide national legislators, State institutions, independent institutions, NGOs and academics with tools, resources and services to support efforts to ratify and implement the ICC Statute and to co-operate with the Court.
The work of the CMN is funded by the European Union, the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The CMN is a department of the Centre for International Law Research and Policy, which is an international not for profit organisation, registered in Belgium.