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Netherlands Program Director
Gregory Townsend started his legal career as a deputy public defender in Los Angeles.
In 1998, he joined the United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda and clerked for a Slovenian supreme court judge before joining the prosecution, spending more than seven years working on Rwandan genocide cases. He later became a prosecutor for both the UN peacekeeping mission in Kosovo and the UN International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. He then served as Head of Office for the Special Court for Sierra Leone in The Hague on the trial of Liberian President Charles Taylor. He joined the Special Tribunal for Lebanon in 2010 as chief legal advisor to the Prosecutor.
From 2014 to 2018, he was chief of the Registry’s Court Services Section at the ICTY and UN International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals, where he oversaw witness protection, legal aid and court operations.
He has been based in The Hague since 2007 and presently works as a lecturer in law. He is on the list of counsel to represent victims before several international criminal courts, and was elected in 2019 to a three-year term on the ICC’s Advisory Committee on Legal Texts.
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