Monday, September 14, 2009
The Specially Appointed Chamber of the ICTY today convicted Florence Hartmann, a one-time spokesperson for a former Tribunal Prosecutor and a former journalist at the French newspaper Le Monde, of contempt for disclosing in a book and as well as an article confidential information in knowing violation of a court order. Summary of the judgment is available here.
One may find the decision highly regrettable. While employees of any court can legitimately be expected to refrain from disseminating confidential information, it is also important to remember that “justice is not a cloistered virtue: she must be allowed to suffer the scrutiny and the respectful even though outspoken comments of ordinary men” (Ambard v AG for Trinidad and Tobago  AC 322, 335, Lord Atkin).