James Jaquess Robinson, 86, a retired international lawyer and judge, died of cardiac arrest Thursday at the Carriage Hill nursing home in Arlington, which he entered six weeks ago. He lived in Washington.

He returned here in 1969 after serving for 15 years as a justice of the Supreme Court of Libya.

Judge Robinson had been a legal counsel at the international war crimes trials in Tokyo and Manila from 1945 to 1948. He also was director of the Navy division and deputy director of the U.S. War Crimes Office here from 1945 to 1950.

He was born in Owensville, Ind. He graduated from Indiana University, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, and from Harvard University Law School.

During World War I, Judge Robinson was on active duty with the U.S. Navy. After the war, he practiced law in Princeton, Ind. until 1924, when he became a profesor of law at Indiana University. He held that title until 1964, although he was on leave beginning in 1941.

During the 1930s, he had served as a judge and prosecuting attorney in the 10th Judicial Circuit in Indiana. Judge Robinson came to Washington in 1941 as a member and reporter with the Advisory Committee on Rules of Criminal Procedure to the U.S. Supreme Court. He was with that committee until 1944.

He also served in the office of the Navy's judge advocate general during World War II. He retired from the Naval Reserves in the early 1950s.

Judge Robinson had served as a member of the U.S. Advisory Committee on International Rules of Judicial Procedure in 1959-62.

He was a member of numerous organizations, including the International, American and Federal Bar Associations, the American Society of International Law, the American Law Institute, the American Judicature Society, the World Peace Through Law Center, the World Association of Judges and the National Lawyers Club.

He is survived by his wife of 59 years, the former Florence V. Williams, of Washington.

The family suggests that expressions of sympathy be in the form of contributions to Foundry Methodist Church in Washington.