Minors are involved in transnational crimes, whether as victims (for example, in human trafficking) or as perpetrators (for example, in drug trafficking or as child soldiers or child pirates). In this sphere, as in the domestic, the separation between victim and perpetrator is sometimes unclear. Minors are particularly vulnerable subjects, but the concept of ‘transnational juvenile criminal justice’ is not yet a well-defined concept and the transposition of domestic constructions of child criminality into the international context of the ICC is under-developed. Through the topic of human trafficking, this pre-conference session explores issues of transnational criminalization and the different legal responses of national jurisdictions. Secondly, focusing on child soldiers, it considers the international criminal justice response to child perpetrators of crimes against humanity, and the arguments for treating these children as victims and/or as perpetrators.
Although children have received some attention from the international community, when it comes to transnational and/or international crimes such as human trafficking or the recruitment of child soldiers, the legal framework is far from fully developed.
Through the themes of human trafficking and children in armed conflict, such as child soldiers we can explore the notion of children as perpetrators, victims and witnesses within the framework of international criminal justice or comparative criminal justice.