It is not uncommon for lawsuits on behalf of long lost victims to be filed, but one Kenyan lawyer is taking up the case of a man who was allegedly murdered almost 2000 years ago: Jesus Christ.
Dola Indidis recently filed a lawsuit with the International Court of Justice (ICJ) at the Hauge with hopes of overturning Jesus’ conviction and death sentence. The targets of his case are “the Roman Emperor Tiberius, the Roman King Herod, the Judean Governor Pontius Pilate, as well as the Jewish chief priest, elders and teachers of the law,” according to Time, which also reports Indidis intends to go after Italy and Israel, claiming they inherited the laws from the ancient ancestors.
“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 told The Nairobian. “His selective and malicious prosecution violated his human rights through judicial misconduct, abuse of office bias and prejudice.”
Unfortunately for Indidis, the case as a matter of legal procedure will likely fail since the ICJ can only rule on cases brought by one state against another. Since Indidis is representing an individual, the court lacks the necessary jurisdiction to rule.
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Anthea Roberts, a professor at Columbia Law School, explained to Time:
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.