Document Type


Publication Date



International Criminal Court, ICC, International criminal law, Prosecutor v. Thomas Lubanga Dyilo, Katanga and Ngudjolo Chui, control-theory, joint perpetration, indirect co-perpetration, hierarchy of blameworthiness


Criminal Law | International Law


As the first cases before the ICC proceed to the Appeals Chamber, the judges ought to critically evaluate the merits and demerits of the control-theory of perpetratorship and its related doctrines. The request for a possible re-characterization of the form of responsibility in the case of Katanga and the recent acquittal of Ngudjolo can be taken as indications that the control-theory, is problematic as a theory of liability. The authors, in a spirit of constructive criticism, invite the ICC Appeals Chamber to take this unique opportunity to reconsider or improve the control-theory as developed by the Pre-Trial Chambers in the Lubanga and Katanga cases.

Publication Citation

Jens D. Ohlin et al., "Assessing the Control-Theory", 26 Leiden Journal of International Law (2013)