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Since 1990, 65 former heads of state or government have been legitimately prosecuted for serious human rights or financial crimes. Many of these leaders were brought to trial in reasonably free and fair judicial processes, and some served time in prison as a result. This book explores the reasons for the meteoric rise in trials of senior leaders and the motivations, public dramas, and intrigues that accompanied efforts to bring them to justice.
Drawing on an analysis of the 65 cases, the book examines the emergence of regional trends in Europe and Latin America and contains case studies of high-profile trials of former government leaders: Augusto Pinochet (Chile), Alberto Fujimori (Peru), Slobodan Milosevic (former Yugoslavia), Charles Taylor (Liberia and Sierra Leone), and Saddam Hussein (Iraq) – studies written by experts who closely followed their cases and their impacts on wider societies. This is the only book that examines the rise in the number of domestic and international trials globally and tells the tales in readable prose and with fascinating details.