Duško Tadić (born October 1, 1955 in the Socialist Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Yugoslavia) is a Bosnian Serb war criminal, former SDS leader in Kozarac and a former member of the paramilitary forces supporting the attack on the district of Prijedor. He was convicted of crimes against humanity, grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions, and violations of the customs of war by the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) for his actions in the Prijedor region, including the Omarska, Trnopolje and Keraterm detention camps. He was sentenced to 20 years of imprisonment.
Tadić was arrested by German police in Munich in 1994. He faced twelve counts of crimes against humanity, twelve counts of grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions, and ten counts of violations of the customs of war, to all of which he pleaded not guilty. His trial was to be held together with Goran Borovnica's, but Borovnica went missing in 1995 and was later declared dead.
On May 7, 1997, the Trial Chamber II found Tadić guilty on 9 counts and partially guilty on 2 counts. Tadić and the prosecution appealed on a number of grounds. One of the arguments required the court to determine whether or not the court was legitimate in its exercise of jurisdiction. Specifically, Tadić argued that the court was illegitimately created through the United Nations Security Council. Tadić's argument was based upon separation of powers. He essentially argued that the Security Council was an executive governmental branch and thus did not have the power to create a judicial body.
To resolve this argument, the court was forced to determine whether it was legitimately formed through the United Nations Security Council. The courts analysis began by determining if this was an issue of jurisdiction. It explained that this may not be a jurisdiction issue when jurisdiction is given a narrow definition. It then noted that a narrow definition of jurisdiction is not warranted in the international context. Thus it determined that Tadić's argument was one of jurisdiction.
Next, the court went on determine whether it had the power to evaluate its own jurisdiction. In coming to a conclusion, the court explained that a tribunal, in the international context, must assert its own jurisdiction within the bounds of the council that forms it. Consequently, it determined that it doesn't have the power to determine the «validity of its establishment by the security council.
Upon Tadić's appeal of the ruling, he was found guilty of several more charges.
Although he expressed no regret for his crimes, he was granted early release from prison on 17 July 2008 and is living in Serbia.
- "Prosecutor v. Duško Tadić - Judgement". International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. 14 July 1997.
- "Prosecutor v. Duško Tadić - Decision on the Defence Motion for Interlocutory Appeal on Jurisdiction". International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. 2 October 1995.
- BIRN BiH (18 July 2008): "ICTY: Dusko Tadic released" (via archive.org)