Monday, August 5, 2013

Kenyan lawyer Dola Indidis is on a mission: to get the International Court of Justice at the Hague to overturn the conviction and death sentence of Jesus Christ 2,000 years ago

The logistics, however, are proving a challenge. The target of his lawsuit are the government and religious leaders of Jesus’ day, including the Emperor Tiberius, King Herod, Pontius Pilate, as well as the Jewish chief priest, elders and teachers of the law. According to some reports, he also plans to go after the current governments of Italy and Israel, arguing that they inherited laws from the Roman Empire. “I filed the case because it’s my duty to uphold the dignity of Jesus and I have gone to the ICJ to seek justice for the man from Nazareth,” Indidis said. “His selective and malicious prosecution violated his human rights through judicial misconduct, abuse of office bias and prejudice.” As a matter of law, Indidis’ efforts will fail. Indidis tried to bring the case to the High Court of Kenya in 2007, but the court refused to hear it, citing a lack of jurisdiction. At the International Court of Justice, it would be impossible to even consider the case, much less rule on it. When it comes to contentious cases, the International Court of Justice only has jurisdiction to hear claims that are brought by one state against another state. As this claim is not brought by a state, the ICJ would lack jurisdiction over it. Even if the claim were to be brought by a state, it also needs to be brought against a state, which does not seem to be the case here. And, even then, the two states will need to have consented to the ICJ having jurisdiction to hear the type of case in question. In this case, it is not clear what international law might have been violated and, even if there was such a violation, it is not clear that the relevant states have consented to the ICJ having jurisdiction over the dispute. But that has not stopped Indidis, who appears to remain confident. He has a Facebook page asking for donations in support of his cause. He posted a picture of his Law Society of Kenya identification card, as well as a letter dated December 2011 when he first tried to take the case to the Hague. “Together we can win,” he wrote. “Yes we can.” I wonder if he is an Obama supporter?

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