Is this a trend?
Ta Mok, captured in 1999 and accused in the Cambodian genocide, has died at age 80.
Just before they were ready to swear in the judges for his war crimes trial, set to begin next year.
He joins Slobodan Milosevic on the roster of war criminals who died of old age before a tribunal could decide the case. At least Milosevic made it through the prosecution's case, which took five years.
If the international types would like to convince us that trial is an effective response to genocide, they're going to have either to speed things up a bit, or else find some younger and healthier genocidal types.
I suspect the delays occur because these are show trials, in a literal sense. Sounds like most of these could be proven in a day or two. Put on three eyewitnesses to the killings, rest your case. See what the guy says in defense, blast it in rebuttal, and rest. Instead, the idea is to document in detail everything the guy did (result that the trial is preceded by years of research) and then prove it for history (so the trial itself takes 5+ years).
You can do things that way, but when the defendant is in his 70s, there's a good chance you'll never get to the verdict. I suppose Nuremburg is taken as the precedent, but the Nazis were in their 50s or so, and weren't able to hide out for ten years before being caught.