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I. Maxine Marcus

International Crimes Prosecutor and Investigator: Expert in Transformative Justice For Conflict-Related Sexual Violence

Work experience

Apr 2014Present

International Criminal Prosecution Expert to National Jurisdictions on Cases Involving CRSV and other international crimes

Transitional Justice Clinic

Senior legal consultant providing mentorship and capacity building to prosecutors, judges, investigators and victim representatives in relation to current and ongoing domestic criminal cases involving war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide, as well as to civil litigation in relation to human rights violations. Specialisation in capacity building, mentorship, and technical training in investigation and prosecution of conflict related sexual violence crimes under international criminal law. Projects include mentorship for Guatemalan prosecutors and civil parties on sexual slavery case and other cases involving war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide, capacity building and expert advisor to Kenyan consortium of organisations in relation to a case before the Kenyan constitutional court in relation to sexual violence during the post election violence period, case-based mentoring of prosecutors and investigators in Kosovo in relation to investigation and prosecution of crimes of sexual violence as international crimes. Partners include the Institute for International Criminal Investigations, UN Women, Justice Rapid Response, and Lawyers Without Borders.

Dec 2016July 2017

Senior Legal Expert

UN Focal Point on Sexual Exploitation and Abuse

Expert Legal Advisor to UN Focal Point on SEA team on development of a system-wide UN Manual on Prevention and Response to Sexual Exploitation and Abuse.  Legal and policy guidance to drafting team, editor of the Manual, drafted sections of the manual on “best practices” in relation to prevention and response to sexual exploitation and abuse. Advised on strategies for implementation of policies contained in the Manual, including coordination with other programmes relating to prevention of and accountability for sexual exploitation and abuse as a form of conflict-related sexual violence.

Jul 2015Dec 2015

Senior Legal Investigator

Secretary General's CAR Independent Review Panel

Senior Legal Investigator on Independent Review Panel reviewing the UN response to allegations of sexual exploitation and abuse by non-UN Command Foreign Military Forces in the Central African Republic.  Responsible for drafting policy section of final report.  

Dec 2014Mar 2015

Senior Conflict-Related Sexual Violence Adviser

OHCHR Fact Finding Mission for Sri Lanka

Senior SGBV Adviser to the Fact Finding Mission for Sri Lanka, conducting evidentiary and legal analyses of documentation of sexual and gender based violence as human rights and international criminal law violations in Sri Lanka as part of the inquiry team.

Apr 2014Jun 2014

Senior International Criminal Law and Gender Advisor

UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Prevention of Sexual Violence Initiative

Senior legal advisor to the PSVI team providing expert guidance on preparation and editing of the Protocol on Investigation and Documentation of Sexual Violence Crimes, planning and implementation of the Global Summit on Prevention of Sexual Violence of June 2014, and providing subject matter expertise on international criminal law.

Nov 2009 -Dec 2009

Gender Expert and International Criminal Law Advisor

United Nations Commission of Inquiry for Guinea/UNIFEM

Seconded by UNIFEM to the UN Commission of Inquiry for Guinea, provided legal guidance on all matters relating to ICL violations, in particular crimes of sexual violence, alleged to have been committed in Guinea during the events of the 28th of September 2009 and its aftermath.  Advisory role in investigation, legal and evidentiary analysis, and finalisation of report, with particular focus upon ICL violations

Dec 2005Apr 2014

Trial Attorney

International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, Office of the Prosecutor

Trial Attorney on the international criminal cases against Ratko Mladic, Jovica Stanišic and Franko Simatovic, Milan and Sredoje Lukic, and Dragomir Miloševic. Courtroom advocate on legal, evidentiary and procedural issues, examination and cross-examination of victim, insider, and expert witnesses, broad ranging legal drafting and editing, analysis and assessment of documentary and testimonial evidence, ongoing development of trial strategy. From June 2011 to June 2012, management of the Prosecution team for the Stanisic and Simatovic case, including supervision of attorneys, analysts, investigators, and coordination of trial practice, and representing the Prosecution in court.

Sep 2005Nov 2005

Legal Consultant

Gambella, Ethiopia, Legal Consultant: Supervised and led in-depth field inquiry into alleged violations of IHL and international human rights law, including crimes of sexual violence, targeting the indigenous population in the Gambella region of Ethiopia.
Feb 2003Apr 2005

International Criminal Investigator

Special Court for Sierra Leone, Office of the Prosecutor

Managed the investigation of the case against the Civil Defence Forces (CDF), Sierra Leone's pro-government militia, from early in the investigation to start of trial. Contributed to development of trial strategy and method of presentation of the evidence. Identified, interviewed, proofed insider witnesses who testified in the CDF case, and sixty of the approximately seventy witnesses in total for the CDF case; analysed individual criminal responsibility for the three accused. Led investigation of alleged sexual violence by CDF. Participated in development of prosecution strategy on forced marriage as a crime against humanity.

Aug 2004Aug 2004


Coalition for International Justice/ABA
Coalition for International Justice Darfur Documentation Project Chad(for Darfur), Prosecutor/Investigator: Conducted inquiry into violations of IHL, in particular crimes of sexual violence, in Darfur, under project sponsored by the U.S. Department of State and the American Bar Association.
Jan 2003Feb 2003

Legal Consultant

Legal Consultant: Freetown, Sierra Leone, Researched and drafted UNICEF's submission to the Sierra Leone Truth and Reconciliation Commission on the impact of the ten year civil war on Sierra Leone's children. Conducted legal analysis of the impact of systematic international law violations on children, made recommendations for strategies to address these consequences in the post-war context. Human Rights Watch
Oct 2002Jan 2003

Head of Office

Human Rights Watch/Freetown, Sierra Leone

Investigated and documented human rights and humanitarian law violations in Sierra Leone, Guinea, and Ivory Coast. Designed investigative and legal advocacy strategies, conducted investigations and analysed evidence gathered for legal relevance and probative value. Conducted training in human rights and IHL for both international and local civilian and military personnel and investigation and SGBV training for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

Mar 2002Sep 2002

Protection Officer (Consultant)

UNHCR/International Rescue Committee Surge Protection Capacity Project, Guinea

 Provided human rights protection for refugees from Sierra Leone through legal mechanisms, including direct intervention to prevent or punish human rights violations, with a particular focus on crimes of sexual and gender-based violence. Installed systems to hold perpetrators of crimes of sexual violence accountable, and witness protection mechanisms. Supervised protection staff in all aspects of legal protection for refugees. Conducted trainings in human rights and sexual and gender based violence for Guinean military, police, and civil authorities, as well as for staff of United Nations and non-governmental organizations.

Jun 2000Jul 2000


Human Rights Watch, Kosovo
Consultant: Kosovo, Investigated and documented human rights violations against the minority communities in post-war Kosovo. Trained Serb, Roma and Ashkali community leaders in documentation of human rights violations.
Mar 2000Mar 2000


Human Rights Watch, Ingushetia/Chechnya
Consultant: Ingushetia, Chechen border, Russia, Investigated and documented crimes of sexual violence, allegedly committed by the Russian military against Chechen civilians. Conducted investigations, legal analysis of evidence gathered, prepared final report of investigation with a view towards ultimate accountability for violations of IHL.

Bosnia Researcher: Bosnia and Hercegovina and Croatia

Human Rights Watch

Established and directed Bosnia HRW office. Investigated and documented IHL violations, including systematic sexual violence, committed during the war in Bosnia. Designed investigative strategies, conducted investigations, corroborated allegations, and followed leads. Prepared final reports to ensure sufficient basis to lay charges of violations of international criminal law, with particular focus on crimes of sexual violence.



Open Society Institute, Forced Migration Projects

Researched and analysed issues concerning the repatriation of refugees and displaced persons to the former Yugoslavia. Documented legal obstacles to protection of former Yugoslav repatriates for the Legal Policy Task Force.


Investigative Fellow

Article 19, International Centre Against Censorship, Ivory Coast

Investigated violations of freedom of expression through interviews with journalists, human rights lawyers, political and student activists and organizations, and rural Muslim communities.


Program Director

Bosnian Refugee Camp, Nagyatad, Hungary

Established and directed psycho-social assistance program in a Hungarian government-run refugee camp for refugees from the war in the former Yugoslavia. Fund-raised and administered grant from the International Rescue Committee for program of psycho-social support and creative activities for the approximately 1,500 women and teenage refugees. Advocated nationally for protection Bosnian refugees’ rights in Hungary.



Juris Doctor, cum laude, Law

Brooklyn Law School
Sep 1994May 1995

Master of International Affairs

Columbia University, School of International Affairs

International Affairs with Focus on International Human Rights Law

Sep 1988May 1992

BA Political Science, French

Barnard College, Columbia University

Bachelor's Degree in Political Science with Minor in French Language


Bachelor of Arts, cum laude, Political Science and French

Barnard College


August 2017

Maxine Marcus, Louise Chappell & Andrea Durbach (2017): ‘Nothing About Us, Without Us, Is For Us’: Victims And The International Criminal Justice System,” 

International Journal of Human Rights

DOI: 10.1080/13642987.2017.1361605


Investigation of Crimes of Sexual Violence Under International Criminal Law

Prosecuting Sexual Violence as International Crime: Interdisciplinary Approaches, Series on Transitional Justice (Intersentia)

Co-Author of Chapter on Command Responsibility, Ed. M. Cherif Bassiouni, 2008.

International Criminal Law Case Book, Third Edition, Volume III, International Enforcement

“Post Conflict Justice in Chechnya,” Edited by M. Cherif Bassiouni, November 2002.

Post Conflict Justice

“Humanitarian Intervention Without Borders: Belligerent Occupation or Colonization?” November 2002.

Houston Journal of International Law

“Bosnia and Hercegovina, Foca: A Closed Dark Place, ” Vol. 10, No. 6 (D), May 1998.

Human Rights Watch

“Partitioning Bosnia Rewards Ethnic Cleansing, ” October 12, 1997

New York Times, Letter to the Editor 

“Bosnia and Hercegovina: Politics of Revenge - The Misuse of Authority in Bihac, Cazin, and Velika Kladusa, ” Vol. 9, No. 9 (D), August 1997.

Human Rights Watch

“Reconstruction in Bosnia: International Aid and Non-compliance With Dayton Agreements, ” Volume 8, No. 2, 1997.

Helsinki Monitor, Quarterly on Security and Cooperation in Europe, Netherlands Helsinki Committee, International Helsinki Federation for Human Rights

“Bosnia and Hercegovina: The Unindicted - Reaping the Rewards of Ethnic Cleansing, ” Vol. 9, No. 1 (D), January 1997 and Human Rights Watch, “Bosnia and Hercegovina: Update - Non-Compliance with the Dayton Accords. Ongoing Ethnically Motivated Expulsions and Harassment in Bosnia, ” Vol. 8, No. 12 (D), August 1996.

Human Rights Watch

“Aiding Bosnian Refugees in Hungary, ” Volume XXIII, No. 5.

Migration World Magazine

Teaching/Training/Capacity Building/Expert Guidance

Hague Academy of International Law, Advanced Course on International Criminal Law, Lecturer on Gender Justice in the Field, August 2015. 

Transitional Justice Institute, University of Belfast, Lecturer on Prosecution of Sexual and Gender Based Violence Crimes under International Criminal Law, Belfast, Northern Ireland, June 2015.

Institute for International Criminal Investigations, Capacity Building for Civil Society Investigators on Investigation and Documentation of SGBV under International Criminal Law, in the context of the UK FCO Protocol, Goma DRC, March 2015 and the Hague, April 2015.

UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Preventing Sexual Violence Initiative, Speaker on Plenary Session for Experts Day of Global Summit to Prevent Sexual Violence in Conflict, London, June 2014.

South Sudan Law Society, Training for prosecutors and investigators from South Sudan in international criminal law and investigation and crimes of sexual and gender based violence, June 2014.

Open Society Justice Initiative, Kenya, Expert Witness and Legal Advisor to Kenyan legal team bringing a case before the Kenyan Constitutional Court relating to sexual violence in the Post Election violence in 2008, April 2014.

No Peace Without Justice, Training for Syrian human rights defenders and lawyers in investigation and documentation of crimes of sexual and gender based violence under international criminal law, March 2014.

UN Women – Kosovo, Training for Judges and Prosecutors in Kosovo on International Criminal Law generally and on building a case on sexual and gender based violence crimes, November 2013 and July 2014.

UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office/Institute for International Criminal Investigations, Training Workshop on Gender Crimes under International Criminal Law, and Evidence Gathering to Build a Case of SGBV under ICL, participants will be on the UK Roster of Experts for SGBV Investigations, October 2012.

Women’s Initiatives for Gender Justice Symposium on Prosecution of Sexual and Gender Based Violence Crimes under International Criminal Law, Panel Presenter on the Progress of Prosecution of SGBV Crimes at the Special Court for Sierra Leone and the ICTY, September 2012.

U.N. Women/Justice Rapid Response/Institute for International Criminal Investigations: Training on: Investigation of Crimes of Sexual and Gender Based Violence under International Criminal Law, Lecturer on Gender Crimes under International Criminal Law, and Evidence Gathering to Build a Case of SGBV under ICL to participants who will be on the JRR/UN Women Roster of Experts for SGBV Investigations, May 2009, September 2009, February 2010, June 2010, February 2011, June 2011, February 2012, September 2012, September 2013, August 2015.

U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights, Trainer in investigation of crimes of sexual violence under international human rights and criminal law for OHCHR human rights officers, Berlin, November 2009/2010.

Colloquium on Prosecution of Crimes of Sexual Violence, Presentation and dialogue on use of social science research in prosecution of crimes of sexual violence before international courts, The Hague, June 2009.

American University War Crimes Research Office, Lecture in Prosecution of Crimes of SGBV, October 2008.

ICC, Training for Prosecution Investigators in Investigation of Crimes of Sexual Violence in Armed Conflict, October 2007.

Hague Forum for Judicial Expertise, Training in War Crimes, Crimes Against Humanity, and Genocide for Judges and Prosecutors from Sudan, October 2007, and for Judges and Prosecutors from Jordan in April 2009.

Netherlands War Crimes Office, Training for Dutch prosecutors and police from the Dutch War Crimes Unit in Evidence in War Crimes Trials, and Prosecution and Investigation of Crimes of Sexual Violence, December 2006.

Institute for Security Studies, Capetown, South Africa, “The Challenge of Prosecuting International Crimes in Sierra

Leone,” Conference sponsored by the Open Society Institute, Symposium organised by the Institute for Security Studies in Capetown, South Africa, on the subject of “Investigation and Prosecution of Core International Crimes and the Role of the International Criminal Court in Africa” in August 2006. 

International Bar Association, Expert Trainer in International Humanitarian Law for Ugandan Lawyers, training in jurisdiction, elements of crimes, admissibility in the ICC, the procedural elements of the Rome Statute, civil law components of the Rome Statute, and current developments in international justice, Uganda, February 2006.

University of Amsterdam, International Criminal Law Department, training lecture in practical application of international criminal law and procedure, with a focus on prosecution of crimes of sexual violence, May 2005.

International Bar Association, Expert Trainer for Iraqi Prosecutors from the Iraq Special Tribunal, training in Crimes Against Humanity, Evidence of Witnesses, Witness Protection, and Investigations, March 2005.

Institute for International Criminal Investigations, Training in investigation and prosecution of crimes of sexual violence, and evidence in war crimes trials, April and Dec 2005, May and Dec 2006, Nov 2007, May and Nov 2008, June 2009, June and Nov 2010, June and Nov 2011, Feb 2012, Nov 2012, May 2013, Nov 2013, June 2014, July 2015, August 2015.

Georgetown Law School, International Criminal Law Lecture, “Investigating and Prosecuting War Crimes and Crimes Against Humanity: A Comparative Perspective,” January 2005.

Coalition for International Justice Darfur Accountability Project, Chad, Ad hoc Laws of War training for Sudanese community leaders, August 2004.

Campaign for Good Governance, Freetown, Sierra Leone, Training for Human Rights Monitors in human rights, international humanitarian law, and investigative techniques, May 2004.

Brooklyn Law School, International Criminal Law Lecture, “The Special Court for Sierra Leone: Comparisons between the SCSL and the ICTY and ICTR,” April 2004, “The International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia; A Field Perspective,” April 6, 1999, and April 13, 2000, and “Human Rights Field Investigations,” Sparer Public Interest Fellowship Program Public Interest Lunch, March 24, 1999.

Woodrow Wilson School, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ, “War Crimes Investigations: A Comparative Perspective Between Bosnia, Chechnya, Kosovo, Ivory Coast, and Sierra Leone,” April 2004.

Sierra Leone Truth and Reconciliation Commission, Freetown, Sierra Leone, Training for statement takers in sexual and gender based violence, international criminal law, and human rights investigations, November 2002.

UNAMSIL Military Observers, Bo, Sierra Leone, Training for UN military observers in IHL, and the role and practices of the Special Court and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, November 2002.

Guinean Army, Kissidougou, Guinea, Training for Guinean military officers in IHL and IHRL, May 2002.

New York University, School of Journalism, New York, NY, “Human Rights Organizations and Journalists: Friends or Foes?” April 26, 2001, and January 30, 2002.

Barnard College, Columbia University “Perspectives of a War Crimes Investigator,” November 20, 2001.

Eotvos Lorand University, Budapest, Hungary, “Human Rights in Bosnia,” April 29, 1998.

US Congressional Human Rights Caucus, House of Representatives, Washington DC, Testimony for congressional hearing on subject of “Bosnia: Rape as A War Crime,” March 25, 1998. Congressional Human Rights Caucus, House of Representatives, Washington DC, Testimony, “After the Dayton Peace Accords: Unpunished War Crimes Against Women,” May 7, 1997.

Press Coverage - Selections

Expert Testimony Before the Kenyan High Court – Human Rights Case against the Kenyan Government for failure to investigate and prosecute sexual violence during the post-election violence, June 2016:

London School of Economics, Centre for Women, Peace and Security, Conference on Prosecuting Conflict-Related Sexual Violence at ICTY, June 2016:

UK Parliament: Committee Proposals From Members Of The House, 2015


UN Women

UK FCO PSVI Global Summit and Protocol, June 2014

Quoted in Opening of IICI/JRR/UN Women Training in South Africa January 2013

Womens Initiatives for Gender Justice Symposium September 2012

Institute for International Criminal Investigations (IICI)

Institute for War and Peace Reporting, 2010