Top 100 Logo

Fossum Named a “Top 100 Trial Lawyer.”

Attorney John L. Fossum

Attorney John L. Fossum


Attorney John L. Fossum, of the Fossum Law Office, LLC has been named a Top 100 Trial Lawyer by the National Trial Lawyers.

According to their website:

The National Trial Lawyers: Top 100 an invitation-only organization composed of the premier trial lawyers from each state in the nation who meet stringent qualifications as civil plaintiff and/or criminal defense trial lawyers. Selection is based on a thorough multi-phase process which includes peer nominations combined with third-party research. Membership is extended solely to the select few of the most qualified attorneys from each state who demonstrate superior qualifications of leadership, reputation, influence, stature and public profile.

National Trial Lawyers have posted a profile of Mr. Fossum here.  Mr. Fossum is also a Board Certified Criminal Law

Top 100 Logo

Top 100 Logo

Specialist by the Minnesota State Bar Association.

Fossum Law Office, LLC has offices in Northfield and Bloomington, Minnesota.  John L. Fossum is licensed to practice in the State and Federal Courts of Minnesota, the Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, the United States Supreme Court, the International Criminal Court, the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, and the Special Tribunal for Lebanon.

If you have a criminal or civil case in Minneapolis, St. Paul, Bloomington, Shakopee, Hastings, Faribault, Waseca, Owatonna, Rochester, or elsewhere in Minnesota, contact Fossum Law Office, LLC for representation.  John Fossum has handled cases in Ramsey, Hennepin, Washington, Anoka, Dakota, Scott, Olmsted, Rice, Steele, Waseca, Mower, Freeborn and other counties in Minnesota.

Certified Criminal Law Specialist John L. Fossum

International Criminal Law CLE Planned

John L. Fossum is scheduled to speak at a CLE on International Criminal Law, planned for May 3, 2013 in Minneapolis. Mr. Fossum will be speaking on the history of International Criminal Law and Ethics Issues in Defense in International Criminal Law.  He is admitted to practice before four international criminal tribunals and an MSBA Board Certified Criminal Law Expert.  Also expected to appear are United States District Court Judge John Tunheim and Assistant United States Attorney John Docherty.

Judge Tunheim will discuss his time in Kosovo and the international tribunals impacts on Kosovo.  Mr. Docherty will describe his time working as a prosecutor at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia.

More details will follow when they become available, it is expected there will be a panel discussion, question and answer period following the presentations. The program will be sponsored by the Criminal Law Section of the Minnesota State Bar Association.

CLE on International Criminal in Minneapolis, April 18, 2012

Photo of International Criminal Court, The Hague, Netherlands

Photo of the International Criminal Court, The Hague, Netherlands

John L. Fossum, along with former U.S. Ambassdor Robert Flaten, United States District Court Judge John Tunheim, Assistant United States Attorney John Docherty and Professor Barbara Frey of the Human Rights Program at the Institute for Global Studies at the University of Minnesota.  Details of the program, registration information, and bios of the speakers are available here.

Topics include the genocide in Rwanda, the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands,

a History of International Criminal Law, the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia and the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda.  Speakers will also be addressing war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide generally.


Appeals Judge Recuses Herself from Lubanga Appeal

International Criminal Court Appeals Judge Akua Kuenyehia has removed herself from hearing the appeal of the trial court decision suspending the case against Thomas Lubanga of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.  Judge Kuenyehia sat on the pre-trial chamber that approved the warrant and initial indictment against Lubanga.  Another judge who has not been involved in the pre-trial or trial chamber decisions has been assigned to her seat on the Appeals Chamber.  The process is explained in the Open Society blog on the Lubange trial here.

Thomas Lubanga Dyilo is the first person to face trial at the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague, The Netherlands for war crimes.  He is also the first person ever to have been charged with recruiting and using child soldiers as a war crime. Lubanga was the leader of the Union of Congolese Patriots in the Democratic Republic of Congo.  He was brought before the ICC in 2007, his trial started in January 2009, the defense began its case in January 2010.

Last month, the trial chamber suspended the trial based on allegations that a prosecution investigator, identified as “Intermediary 143″  bought or otherwise influenced the testimony of defense witnesses.  The trial chamber ordered the prosecutor to identify “Intermediary 143″ and when the prosecution did not comply ordered the trial suspended and Lubanga released finding that the refusal to disclose the identity of the intermediary to the defense had denied Lubanga a fair trial on the charges.  The court in its order said:

Whilst these circumstances endure, the fair trial of the accused is no longer possible, and
justice cannot be done, not least because the judges will have lost control of a
significant aspect of the trial proceedings as provided under the Rome Statute framework.

The Open Society Institute detailed the court’s decision here.

The prosecution has appealed the order suspending the case and the order directing Lubanga’s release on the grounds that he might flee and not return to the court if released from custody.

Moreno-Ocampo Promises Appeal in Lubanga Case, Discusses Future cases

International Criminal Court (ICC) Prosecutor, Luis Moreno-Ocampo spoke with blogger Melanie Gouby and played down the Trial Chamber’s decisions to suspend the case against Thomas Lubanga, and to release him from custody.  In the interview, available here, Moreno-Ocampo argued the court’s order was the sign of a strong court and that his office was in the process of complying with the court’s order to disclose the identity of an investigator who is alleged to have bribed witnesses in order to gain more damaging testimony against Lubanga. The defense has claimed that some of the witnesses have assumed other identities and were not in fact child soldiers.

Lubanga is the first person brought to the The Hague to face charges before the ICC.  He was brought before the court in 2007 on war crimes charges, claiming he had conscripted and used child soldiers.  His trial began in January of 2009, the defense began its  presentation in 2010, the case was suspended over the prosecutions refusal to disclose the identity of the witness as ordered by the court. Lubanga was the reputed head of the Union of Congolese Patriots in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Of great interest in the interview was Moreno-Ocampo’s discussion of cases that are currently being investigated but have not been made public or charged.  Those include, Georgia, Colombia, and Afghanistan.  Guinea is also under investigation.

A significant criticism of the court is that only African nations have open investigations and accused.  The open question will be how long before a non-African nation becomes a recognized situation with accused before the court.