Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 494

 1                          Friday, 15 September 2006

 2                          [Status Conference]

 3                          [Accused not present]

 4                          [Open session]

 5                          --- Upon commencing at 6.17 p.m.

 6            JUDGE ORIE:  Good afternoon to everyone.

 7            Mr. Registrar, would you please call the case.

 8            THE REGISTRAR:  Good afternoon, Your Honours.  This is case number

 9    IT-01-42/2-PT, the Prosecutor versus Vladimir Kovacevic.

10            JUDGE ORIE:  Thank you, Mr. Registrar.

11            We're here for a Status Conference in the case against Mr.

12    Kovacevic.  Although one could argue if an accused who is on provisional

13    release, whether a Status Conference should be held, similarly as provided

14    for in the Rules, there were reasons to at least call a Status Conference

15    at this moment.

16            May I have the appearances.  Prosecution, first.

17            Ms. Somers, I take it you're accompanied by?

18            MS. SOMERS:  I am accompanied by the same persons who were here

19    earlier on.

20            JUDGE ORIE:  Yes, but that's another --.

21            MS. SOMERS:  I will introduce them again.  Our case manager has

22    not made it in, but let me just continue.

23            Susan Somers for the Prosecution.  To my right, Mr. David Re.

24    Behind me, Mr. Aleksandar Kontic and Phillip Weiner.  And when our manager

25    enters, it will be Ms. Carmela Javier.

Page 495

 1            JUDGE ORIE:  Yes, thank you.

 2            For the Defence.

 3            MS. RADOSAVLJEVIC:  Thank you, Your Honour.  For the Defence,

 4    Tanja Radosavljevic as the counsel, assisted by Mr. Dragoslav Djukic as

 5    the case manager.  Thank you.

 6            JUDGE ORIE:  Thank you.  We have invited representatives of Serbia

 7    to be present.  Could they present themselves.

 8            Mr. Obradovic, these are different proceedings.  That's the reason

 9    why we have to put everything on record again and again.  So you are

10    invited to introduce yourselves.

11            MR. OBRADOVIC:  Thank you, Your Honour.  It is a pleasure anyway.

12            My name is Sasa Obradovic.  I'm the First Councillor of the

13    Embassy of Serbia in The Hague, and today with me on behalf of the Serbian

14    government is the Deputy Prosecutor for War Crimes, Mr. Dusan Knezevic.

15            JUDGE ORIE:  Thank you, Mr. Obradovic.

16            Usually at Status Conferences, issues like disclosure, et cetera,

17    are on the agenda.  We have an open agenda today.  There's one issue that

18    the Chamber would like to hear more about.  That is the issue of reports

19    about Mr. Kovacevic, who has been provisionally released, and related to

20    that, any observations by Serbia in respect of concerns that have been

21    expressed by the Defence on the conditions in psychiatric institutions.

22            Just to cut it short, Serbia has asked permission to move Mr.

23    Kovacevic from the hospital where he is at present to another hospital.

24    The request seemed to be an urgent one and was related to the medical

25    condition of Mr. Kovacevic.  The Chamber quickly responded to that

Page 496

 1    request.  Then Ms. Radosavljevic expressed in writing concerns about the

 2    conditions in the hospital to which Mr. Kovacevic would be transferred.

 3            Since the transfer had not been that urgent, that it had already

 4    taken place, the Chamber, on the basis of the concerns, had suspended its

 5    permission, and since then no further information reached the Chamber.

 6            If I might put this first on the agenda, and then ask later if

 7    there's anything else that the parties would like to raise, then I would

 8    like to give an opportunity to Ms. Radosavljevic to inform me on whether

 9    any further information reached her, apart from the information that has

10    already been brought to the attention of the Chamber, and whether she

11    would like to further elaborate on it.

12            Ms. Radosavljevic.

13            MS. RADOSAVLJEVIC:  Thank you, Your Honour.  Since my reply to the

14    request of the state, I haven't received any further information on this

15    particular issue.

16            JUDGE ORIE:  Yes.  So matters stand as they were, I think it was,

17    early August.

18            MS. RADOSAVLJEVIC:  Exactly.

19            JUDGE ORIE:  Ms. Somers, I don't know whether the Prosecution has

20    an opinion about the matter or whether it leaves it mainly to the Chamber,

21    the Defence, and the reporting state.

22            MS. SOMERS:  We leave it to the Chamber.

23            JUDGE ORIE:  Yes, thank you, Ms. Somers.

24            Then, Mr. Obradovic, may I invite you to, first of all, respond to

25    the concerns expressed by Ms. Radosavljevic.  You are aware of the

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 1    concerns expressed.  And could I, once you've done that, invite you also

 2    to inform me, and by that, the Chamber, why reporting had not taken place

 3    within the time limits set in the order for provisional release?

 4            Please proceed.

 5            MR. OBRADOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, in view of the

 6    complexity and sensitivity of the matter, I will do my best to stay within

 7    the bounds of what is reliable information only.  And it is with absolute

 8    reliability that I can inform Your Honour of the following:

 9            The fact of the matter is that the physicians and the medical

10    staff of the psychiatric clinic of the Military Medical Academy in

11    Belgrade did come across certain difficulties in providing security for

12    his patient, who is the accused in this case, Vladimir Kovacevic --

13            JUDGE ORIE:  Let me interrupt you.  If it would be necessary, or

14    if you would like to go into details which are not suitable for a public

15    hearing because they directly are linked to medical issues concerning Mr.

16    Kovacevic which are not suitable for a public hearing, then please address

17    me and ask me whether we go into private session.  Then you'll feel

18    perhaps more free to speak and the Chamber gets better information and the

19    interests of Mr. Kovacevic will then be properly protected.

20            So whenever there's any need, don't hesitate to address me.

21    Please proceed.

22            MR. OBRADOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you for the suggestion.  In

23    that case, I would ask you, to be on the safe side, to move into private

24    session.

25            JUDGE ORIE:  Mr. Registrar, could we turn into private session.

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14                                 [Open session]

15            THE REGISTRAR:  We are now in open session.

16            JUDGE ORIE:  For those following the proceedings here, we have

17    stayed a little too long in private session.  The representative of

18    Serbia has told me that he has two reports, one report dated the 6th of

19    September about the treatment of Mr. Kovacevic, a report by

20    Dr. Radovanovic, and another report also of the 6th of September in which

21    the competence of Mr. Kovacevic to stand trial is dealt with, a report

22    which is drafted by three physicians.  The parties will now receive

23    copies of those reports for brief inspection.

24                          [Parties review reports]

25            JUDGE ORIE:  I'd like to invite Ms. Radosavljevic to inform me

Page 503

 1    about the content of the report, so not to interpret it in any way but

 2    just to inform me about what it says.  And then, Ms. Somers, I take it

 3    that you'll be able to form your opinion on whether that's information

 4    similar to what you received.

 5            Ms. Radosavljevic.

 6            MS. RADOSAVLJEVIC:  Thank you, Your Honour.

 7            The first letter, the report on the medical state of

 8    Mr. Vladimir Kovacevic, signed by the Chief of the Psychiatry,

 9    Dr. Miroslav  Radovanovic, and maybe this would be a good moment to

10    re-enter private  session.

11            JUDGE ORIE:  Yes.  We'll turn into private session.

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16                                 [Open session].

17            THE REGISTRAR:  We are in open session, Your Honour.

18            JUDGE ORIE:  Yes, Ms. Radosavljevic, is there any comment you'd

19    like to make or any matter to be raised in relation to this report?

20            MS. RADOSAVLJEVIC:  Thank you, Your Honour.  In relation to the

21    documents that we received, no, I don't have any comments right now.  I

22    am just wondering, we spoke at the Rule 11 bis hearing on the possibility

23    of presenting to the Referral Chamber the documents that we spoke about.

24    In legal terms, I agree with what my learned friend uttered, in terms who

25    is authorised to give a legal finding.  I would just like to say that, in

Page 508

 1    my opinion, these two papers should be given also to the Referral Bench.

 2            JUDGE ORIE:  What's your opinion on that, Ms. Somers?

 3            MS. SOMERS:  I'm not sure of the value of it, because if the

 4    finding by -- the relevant finding is the finding by Your Honour, and of

 5    course the Prosecution's position is that that particular finding is not

 6    relevant to referral.  So we would find no value evidentiarially or even a

 7    reason for further reporting unless the Bench were minded to hold another

 8    hearing.  I assume this wouldn't be at this stage, and particularly in

 9    light of the comments that should there be a referral, there would be an

10    immediate evaluation in a foreign country.

11            JUDGE ORIE:  We have now learned about the content of these

12    reports.  These reports, I would say, do not or are not such that they

13    would undermine the decision given by the Trial Chamber.  I mean, it does

14    not contradict -- whatever the value may be, whether it's sound or not,

15    but certainly these reports would not contradict the finding of the Trial

16    Chamber.  At the same time, the first report about the present medical

17    status reflects a deterioration of the medical situation of the patient.

18    I don't think that the Referral Bench would go into any details as far as

19    medical matters are concerned.  This is very global information.

20            If you could agree that this information would, for the time

21    being and for the purposes of the Referral Bench, be sufficient, then it

22    is on the public record now and the Referral Bench, of course in a

23    transparent way, could express that it has knowledge of this summary of

24    what these reports tell us.

25            I'm trying to avoid that we get a whole new round of litigation

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 1    on something which is really marginal at this moment.  I mean,

 2    Mr. Kovacevic is a psychiatric patient, is a serious psychiatric patient,

 3    and whether he is a little bit more serious psychiatric patient is, of

 4    course, something we should not spend ages on.

 5            Ms. Radosavljevic.

 6            MS. RADOSAVLJEVIC:  Your Honour, I just wanted to state that I

 7    disagree with my learned friend that these two papers have no relevance

 8    for the Rule 11 bis hearing that we had today, because -- and I'm now

 9    talking about just the first document, not the second.

10            JUDGE ORIE:  Yes.

11            MS. RADOSAVLJEVIC:  Because this actually supports the submission

12    of the Defence that was uttered in a private session.  So, therefore, I

13    think they are relevant for the Referral Bench, of course to value them

14    as they see fit.

15            JUDGE ORIE:  Yes.  At least one could say that what you said in

16    private session at the time, you expressed some concern about new

17    examinations that might have their influence, that at least the present

18    status does not make that argument any less valid than it was without

19    this information.

20            MS. SOMERS:  Your Honour, we just see that as having no real

21    value other than perhaps there is a requirement of periodic medical

22    reports.  So the first report, perhaps.  But the attempt at opinions on

23    issues that are not in the competence that are in the second report, we

24    think, should not be factored in at all.

25            JUDGE ORIE:  Okay.  Could the parties agree that the first report,

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 1    as reflecting the present status of Mr. Kovacevic, would be brought to the

 2    attention of the Referral Bench?  And leave the second.  We have not asked

 3    for the second one, as a matter of fact.

 4            MS. SOMERS:  We would.  That's fine.

 5            MS. RADOSAVLJEVIC:  The Defence agrees.

 6            JUDGE ORIE:  Then that has been settled.

 7            Then, Ms. Radosavljevic, I do understand that at this moment the

 8    transfer of Mr. Kovacevic to another clinic is not -- not only not

 9    urgent, but it's not an issue at this moment, although it's not entirely

10    clear to me whether it was that the Lazar Lazarevic clinic could not

11    provide the treatment or could not provide the necessary security.  I do

12    understand that it's not at this moment something under consideration.  In

13    view of this, would you like, nevertheless, to respond to what has been

14    said by Mr. Obradovic, or -- I'm not keeping you from doing it, but I'm

15    also looking at the clock and ...

16            MS. RADOSAVLJEVIC:  No, Your Honour, not at the time being.  The

17    Defence has uttered in its submission the point of view in regards to the

18    clinic that we are talking about, Lazar Lazarevic.  And, as the

19    representative of the state informed the Trial Chamber, the state

20    received also information from that specific clinic that they do not have

21    the capacity or the conditions for Mr. Kovacevic to be treated there.

22            JUDGE ORIE:  So whatever may have been the situation at the

23    clinic, it's not relevant for Mr. Kovacevic at this moment.  Yes.

24            Then, is there any other matter the parties would like to raise?

25            Ms. Radosavljevic?

Page 511

 1            MS. RADOSAVLJEVIC:  Well, maybe it's too early to pose this

 2    question, but the Defence submitted a request for certification in

 3    regards to a decision of the Trial Chamber of the dismissal of the

 4    indictment.

 5            JUDGE ORIE:  Of course.  And you'll receive a decision on that

 6    request.

 7            Ms. Somers.

 8            MS. SOMERS:  Nothing further, thank you.

 9            JUDGE ORIE:  Nothing further?

10            Any further need to address the Chamber, Mr. Obradovic?  I see

11    you nodding no.

12            Then we'll stand adjourned sine die.

13                                 --- Whereupon the Status Conference adjourned

14                                 sine die at 6.58 p.m.

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