Statement by Mr. David Schwendiman, new Lead Prosecutor of the Special Investigative Task Force (SITF)
Brussels, 21 May 2015
Upon his arrival in Brussels today, the new Lead Prosecutor of the Special Investigative Task Force (SITF), Mr. David Schwendiman, made the following statement:
“I take up the post of SITF Lead Prosecutor with a strong sense of responsibility. My secondment is a reconfirmation of the United States’ commitment to seeing this process through, and yet another sign of close EU-US cooperation.
I fully endorse the investigative work that has been conducted by the SITF team and the statement made by my predecessor, Ambassador Clint Williamson, in July 2014. I am determined to take the work forward and to see this process through.
In order for this to happen, the Specialist Chambers and the Specialist Prosecutor’s Office need to be established as soon as possible. I encourage all stakeholders involved to do their best to adopt the necessary legal framework to make this possible. Only full consistency with the commitments assumed in the Exchange of Letters of April 2014 and strict respect for the highest standards of international justice will ensure the credibility and legitimacy of this process.
I place critical value on the independence, impartiality and integrity of the investigation and criminal proceedings. This is of paramount importance for us to be able to finish our investigation into the allegations contained in the Council of Europe report of 2011, and to take this all to the next level.”
See Mr Schwendiman’s CV here.
SITF at a glance
The Special Investigative Task Force (SITF) was formed in September 2011 to conduct an independent criminal investigation into the allegations contained in the Council of Europe report of January 2011 by Senator Dick Marty.
In September 2016 the SITF transitioned into the Specialist Prosecutor’s Office (SPO). It consists of international staff and is located in The Hague (the Netherlands).
Mr. David Schwendiman of the United States has been the SITF Lead Prosecutor since May 2015, and was appointed on 01 September 2016 as the Specialist Prosecutor. Mr. Schwendiman brings with him a wealth of professional and academic experience working at the highest levels in both international and domestic criminal prosecution. Prior to joining the SITF, Mr. Schwendiman served, among others, in Afghanistan and in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Mr. Schwendiman succeeds Mr. Clint Williamson, who was the SITF Lead Prosecutor from October 2011 until August 2014.