Template:Infobox philosopher Philippe Sands, QC (born 17 October 1960) is a British lawyer at Matrix Chambers, and is Professor of International law at University College London. Sands is notable for writing a book, Lawless World, in which he accused US President George W. Bush and Prime Minister Tony Blair of conspiring to invade Iraq in violation of international law. His further book, Torture Team: Rumsfeld's Memo and the Betrayal of American Values, was released in May 2008.[1] He also was the first to refer to the Bush-Blair memo that contained the claim that Bush wanted to lure Saddam Hussein's forces to shoot down a UN plane.[2][3] OpEdNews reports that Sands claims the memo states that Bush had proposed trying to provoke the Iraqis to fire on fighter planes in United Nations colours.[4]

Having read law at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge (B.A. 1982, LL.M. first class 1984), Sands was called to the Bar in 1985 and appointed Queen's Counsel in 2003, and appointed a Bencher of the Middle Temple in 2009. He has held academic positions at St Catharine's College, Cambridge (1984–88), King's College London (1988–91), the New York University School of Law (1994–2003), and the School of Oriental and African Studies (1989–2002), where he founded the Foundation for International Environmental Law and Development. He took up his present post as a Professor of Laws and the Director of the Centre on International Courts and Tribunals at University College London in 2002.[5]

He testified before the United States House Judiciary Committee Hearing From the Department of Justice to Guantanamo Bay: Administration Lawyers and Administration Interrogation Rules and United States Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing Coercive Interrogation Techniques: Do They Work, Are They Reliable, and What Did the FBI Know About Them?.[6][7]

Jane Mayer reported in The New Yorker on Sands's reaction to news that Spanish investigating judge Baltazar Garzon had received motions requesting that six former Bush officials (Alberto Gonzales John Yoo, Douglas Feith, William Haynes II, Jay Bybee, and David Addington) be charged with war crimes.[8] Mayer reported that when Sands's book was published the prediction that the six men would be charged seemed far-fetched. In the same report Mayer recorded Sands's apparent reluctance to represent General Pinochet in his extradition proceedings. She says that Sands declined the case, but then went on to appear against Pinochet instead. Sands is currently representing Macedonia in its case against Greece relating to the Macedonian naming dispute at the International Court of Justice and made opening statements for the Balkan state on 21 March 2011.

Sands lives in London and is married to American lawyer Natalia Schiffrin, daughter of André Schiffrin. They have three children: Leo, Lara, and Katya.

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