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William Bourdon

Lawyer and President of the Sherpa association

BACKGROUND / Academic and professional background

In 1978, William Bourdon graduated from a B.A. in public law, PARIS I (Sorbonne) and I.E.P (Institute of Political Studies, Science-Po), Public Service section, Paris. One year later he received a M.A. in private law, (Maîtrise de droit privé) from Paris I (Sorbonne). In 1981, Bourdon received the 1st prize, conference constest, Ordre des Avocats (professional lawyer association), PARIS.

William Bourdon has various activities in the field of human rights, he is secretary-general of the Human Rights International Federation, judiciary and juridical cooperation from 1995 to 2000 . President and founder of the SHERPA association (2001). SHERPA gathers experts in various fields of international law in order to devise the methods and processes required in order to bring international financial and environmental criminals to justice, as well as to secure reparation for their victims. Member of the Paris Support Committee to HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH. William Bourdon works as Legal advisor for various environmental NGOs.

President of the Society of the Readers of LIBERATION (a leading French newspaper) until 2008.

Member of the Board of the Fondation France Libertés, a prominent human rights organization founded by the wife of former president F. MITTERRAND.

In charge of the Human Rights and public liberty pole during President François HOLLANDE’s campaign

ACHIEVEMENT/ What is your project, initiative, start-up, company all about?

William BOURDON, French Lawyer Member of the Paris Bar since 1980, deals primarily with Human Rights, Business Criminal Law, International Public Law, International Criminal Law, Business Law, Media Law with a specialization in the press, and Globalization issues.

Bourdon published numerous works of international law and international criminal justice , human right and political , financial crime , terrorism ( in French and foreign journals )

LOCATION/ In which city, country, part of the world do you conduct your activities?

He has been invited as Key Speaker in many international conferences and wrote several articles on the issues of international justice, international penal law, financial crime, corruption, money laundering terrorism, in particular in Paris, The Hague, Brussels, Strasbourg, London and New York City. Publications as well as books on the topics of Human rights, International Justice (including “La Cour pénale internationale, Le Statut de Rome” – “International Criminal Court, The Rome Statute” in 2000).

IMPACT/ What is the positive economic, social, political, environmental impact …of the activity, project, initiative, start-up, company?

Legal adviser to the civil parties in a lawsuit against Reverend Wenceslas MUNYESHYKA, a Rwandan national

Legal adviser to the civil parties in a lawsuit against Serbian war criminals in France

Legal adviser to French-Chilean families in a lawsuit against General Augusto PINOCHET (oct. 1998). Thirteen officials who served under Chilean dictator convicted on December 17, 2010 of kidnapping and torturing four French nationals

Legal adviser to French-Argentinian families in a July 1998 lawsuit

Legal adviser to Algerian families in a lawsuit against General Khaled NEZZAR

Legal adviser to Tunisian, Belarus and Iraqi families in lawsuit against alleged perpetrators of torture

Legal adviser to former Burmese forced workers in an Oct. 2002 lawsuit against TOTAL (a major French oil company) regarding its activities in Myanmar

Legal adviser to various French former Guantanamo detainees

Numerous actions before several African jurisdictions on behalf of representatives of the civil society (lawyers, journalists…)

Legal Advisor to numerous NGO and individuals, in the case of several legal actions initiated against various African heads-of-state (including Omar BONGO and Denis SASSOU NGUESSO) for their role in a score of financial and patrimonial infractions (investigations were started in May 2007)

Legal adviser to the victims of the PROBO KOALA disaster in France

Extradition cases such as Russian oligarch Vitaly ARKHANGELSKY

Legal adviser to stolen asserts recovery against former State men MUBARAK, KHADAFI and BEN ALI

QUOTE/ A saying, quote or reference phrase that tells something about you. 

“Pessimism of the intellect, optimism of the will” Gramsci