Extraterritorial Jurisdiction over Municipal Crimes

Alejandro Chehtman

in The Philosophical Foundations of Extraterritorial Punishment

Published in print December 2010 | ISBN: 9780199603404
Published online May 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191725173 | DOI:
Extraterritorial Jurisdiction over Municipal Crimes

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This chapter critically examines the principles that ground extraterritorial criminal jurisdiction over domestic offences under international law. It argues that the reasons that account for a state holding the power to punish advocated in Chapter 2 explain it as having jurisdiction over any offence committed on its territory and over offences committed abroad against their sovereignty, security, or important governmental functions (principle of protection). It suggests, however, that these reasons are incompatible with the widely-held principles according to which states claim extraterritorial jurisdiction over an offence on the basis of the nationality of either the offender (nationality principle) or the victim (principle of passive personality). The chapter not only argues that all the reasons that are often given for these principles are ultimately unconvincing at the bar of justice; it also argues that the argument for the scope of states' right to punish is overall more convincing than the one that would result from some of the most influential justifications for legal punishment available in the literature.

Keywords: jurisdiction; nationality principle; passive personality principle; principle of protection; universal jurisdiction; domestic crimes; extraterritoriality; punishment; retribution; deterrence

Chapter.  18013 words. 

Subjects: Public International Law

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