Grave Crimes

Justice & Memory

It is impossible to build a just society on foundations of impunity and forgetting. Trauma, including collective trauma, lingers long after the crime has been committed, particularly when the underlying causes are not addressed. For the people affected by crimes against humanity and war crimes, the inherent injustices live on. Remembering and addressing past atrocities as well as seeking justice can form part of the individual and collective healing process.

Argentina

Grave Crimes

The case of Luis K – Prosecuting Argentine dictatorship crimes in Germany

Military dictatorship

Germany must not be a safe haven for those who commit dictatorship crimes. The former Argentine military officer Luis K is wanted in Argentina for his involvement in crimes against humanity during the country’s military dictatorship (1976-83). As a German citizen, he cannot be extradited. However, the German judiciary may well investigate and prosecute him.

Institute

Institute for Legal Intervention
Grave Crimes

Crimes during liberation wars: The Lumumba murder

Research & Academia

The criminal investigation into Lumumba’s assassination is part of a broader context of structural impunity for the crimes committed by European colonial powers during decolonization. While the long-term effects of colonization persist, direct accountability is rarely possible.

Chile

Grave Crimes

Colonia Dignidad remains a dark chapter of German legal history

Colonia Dignidad

Colonia Dignidad, founded by a German named Paul Schäfer in 1961, was a fortress-like German settlement in central Chile where grave human rights violations were committed over several decades. The former doctor of the Colonia Dignidad, Hartmut Hopp, should face prison in Germany.

Philippines

Grave Crimes

Philippines: Sexual slavery during Second World War

Sexual and gender-based violence

On behalf of 28 survivors of sexual slavery during Second World War in the Philippines, ECCHR and CenterLaw submitted a communication to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women. They call for the acknowledgement of the crimes and reparations.

Democratic Republic Congo

Grave Crimes

Groundbreaking trial in Germany

Armed conflict

The Higher Regional Court in Stuttgart handed down convictions in the trial of two Rwandan leaders of the Hutu militia group FDLR, Ignace Murwanashyaka and Straton Musoni. The FDLR are alleged to have utilized sexualized violence against the Congolese civilian population and to have in numerous cases plundered, killed and inflicted grievous bodily injuries.

Argentina

Grave Crimes
Corporate Exploitation

Mercedes Benz supported the Argentine military dictatorship

Military dictatorship

In the Mercedes Benz case ECCHR is assisting relatives of trade unionists who disappeared from a Mercedes Benz plant in Buenos Aires. A senior manager at the company stands accused of involvement in the disappearances and murders of trade union activists carried out by Argentine security forces.

Argentina

Corporate Exploitation
Grave Crimes

Involvement of mining company in crimes of the Argentine military dictatorship

Military dictatorship

In 2012, ECCHR submitted a legal brief in the case relating to the unlawful detention and torture of workers of the company Minera Aguilar SA during the Argentine military dictatorship (1976-1983).

Argentina

Grave Crimes
Corporate Exploitation

Involvement of Ledesma sugar company in crimes of Argentine military dictatorship

Military dictatorship

In 2011, ECCHR submitted an amicus curiae brief in the criminal investigation examining sugar company Ledesma’s liability for human rights violations during the Argentine military dictatorship.

Argentina

Grave Crimes

Justice at last: Judgment in the Elisabeth Käsemann case

Military dictatorship

More than 30,000 people fell victim to the military dictatorship in Argentina (1976-1983). The victims included around one hundred people with German citizenship or German roots, among them Elisabeth Käsemann.