Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 95

1 Monday, 29 September 2003

2 [Status Conference]

3 [Open session]

4 [The accused entered court]

5 --- Upon commencing at 3.03 p.m.

6 JUDGE MARTIN-CANIVELL: Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen.

7 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please, for the Presiding Judge.

8 JUDGE MARTIN-CANIVELL: Could the registrar call the case.

9 THE REGISTRAR: Case number IT-95-11-PT, the Prosecutor versus

10 Milan Martic.

11 JUDGE MARTIN-CANIVELL: Can you hear me? I cannot hear you. Okay,

12 let's try to go ahead.

13 Can we have the appearances, please.

14 MR. WHITING: Yes, good afternoon, Your Honour. Alex Whiting --

15 Alex Whiting --

16 JUDGE MARTIN-CANIVELL: Okay. Thank you.

17 MR. WHITING: Along with Ms. Sabine Bauer and Ms. Lakshmie

18 Walpita, case manager, for the Prosecution.

19 JUDGE MARTIN-CANIVELL: Thank you. And for the Defence, please.

20 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the Defence, please.

21 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: My apologies. Once again, good afternoon, Your

22 Honour. My name is Predrag Milovancevic. I'm an attorney from Belgrade.

23 I am representing the accused Martic. Next to me is my assistant, Vuk

24 Sekulic, attorney from Belgrade.

25 JUDGE MARTIN-CANIVELL: Mr. Martic, please. Can you hear the

Page 96

1 proceedings, what we are going to be saying here -- stand up, please.

2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes, I can hear.

3 JUDGE MARTIN-CANIVELL: Can you hear the proceedings in a language

4 you can understand perfectly well?

5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes, I can.

6 JUDGE MARTIN-CANIVELL: You may sit down, please.

7 Well, I am informed about what has been going on so far on this

8 case, and I say that in addressing you about several aspects of the case

9 to be dealt with at present. I am confident that it is working pretty

10 well.

11 First of all, I understand that the disclosure procedures are

12 going at a good pace and that you are not having so much problem with

13 that. Also, that you are also making contacts between the parties - can

14 you hear me well? - between the parties about the possibility of some

15 agreements of facts, which seems to be very interesting to us to know.

16 Also, I want to tell you and to emphasise that the Chamber is very

17 interested and would be most helping with whatever you may ask about the

18 protection of witnesses. Not only for the Prosecution, but I had

19 understood that also for the Defence this may be a problem, and we are

20 ready to try to solve whatever your problems may be.

21 And finally, I would like to thank you also, because you are

22 working at a pace that even if we are not going to be able to start the

23 hearing of the case in October, as was previously suggested in the

24 previous Status Conference, I am glad that -- and I am confident that

25 probably in very short delay you will be ready to start.

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1 So that is what I have been told so far. I want to take this

2 moment to ask you, the Prosecution and the counsel for the accused, to

3 state to me and suggest to me whatever problems you may have in connection

4 with the case. So please, the Prosecutor, would you like to add, to

5 explain some problem or issue you would like to mention here?

6 MR. WHITING: No, Your Honour. I wouldn't say that we're having

7 any problems with the case. As the Court has stated, things are moving

8 along at a good pace. Disclosure is proceeding. Of course it's an

9 ongoing process, particularly with respect to Rule 68 as we continue to

10 review the material and provide it to the Defence and have a dialogue with

11 the Defence so that we can more specifically identify what it is that they

12 need and also make it clear to them what we have reviewed. So that, I

13 think, dialogue is beginning and is productive.

14 With respect to the efforts on agreement of facts, the Court is

15 right that there has been contact. A process has started. To be candid,

16 I don't think we have made tremendous progress so far in reaching

17 agreement, but I'm very hopeful, based on our most recent discussions,

18 that with some additional time we will be able to make progress as both

19 sides focus a little bit more and as the Defence has more of an

20 opportunity to review the material that's being provided to them, I think

21 that we can - and I certainly hope - that we can narrow the issues for

22 trial. But that is obviously a process that will require a little bit

23 more time and it may be something that we seek assistance from the senior

24 legal officer in trying to negotiate that.

25 As we told the senior legal officer on Friday, we will be filing a

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1 protective measures motion within the next two or three weeks with respect

2 to perhaps ten or so witness.

3 So as the Court noted, we don't -- we're not ready in October, but

4 the delay, I think, will be productive.

5 JUDGE MARTIN-CANIVELL: Thank you. What about you, the counsel

6 for the accused? Do you have any suggestion or issue to raise at this

7 moment?

8 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] As far as the Defence is

9 concerned, Your Honour, we could say right now that the Defence agrees

10 what -- with what the colleague Prosecutor just told you. We do have

11 communication. The disclosure of material under Rule 68 is currently in

12 progress. What is important both for us, for the Court, and for the

13 colleagues from the Prosecution is that this material is voluminous. So

14 far we have received 4.000 of potential exculpatory material under Rule

15 68. Naturally, the Defence is not mandated to read the entire material,

16 but just to review it, to select relevant portions, and to proceed to work

17 on it. So this procedure is currently in progress.

18 What is also very important for the Defence is that the

19 Prosecution maintains that rhythm so that on one hand the Defence is not

20 overburdened with material and on the other hand so that we have an

21 opportunity to review the material because we have undertaken that as our

22 obligation with respect to the Court, to review the material using our own

23 resources.

24 We have received an offer from the Prosecution pertaining to 45

25 items. We responded to all of those points, and last Friday we received

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13 English transcripts.













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1 the opinion of the Prosecution concerning the offer.

2 On one hand, we are discussing the so-called general issues, and

3 it probably would be the best if the Prosecution and the Defence could

4 agree on that. But taking into account the relevant period of the

5 indictment, the territory to which the criminal enterprise pertains, I can

6 tell you that this is a very delicate issue, and we expect that, with the

7 assistance of Mr. Harhoff and in contacts with the Prosecution, we should

8 be able to agree on all of the issues that are possible right now at this

9 stage in the proceedings. Naturally, we need to agree on certain legal

10 and factual issues that are not part of the merits of the case. I hope

11 that we will be successful in this.

12 Right now, we don't have any other issues to bring up, Your

13 Honour. Thank you.

14 JUDGE MARTIN-CANIVELL: Thank you. I am very happy to know that

15 you are in the right way, if I may say so.

16 So I will turn now to Mr. Martic -- excuse me.

17 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] I beg your pardon, Your

18 Honour. The record states 4.000 pages. I have to correct it. It is not

19 4.000 but, rather, 400.000 pages that we need to review. So could this

20 please be corrected.

21 JUDGE MARTIN-CANIVELL: Yes. It doesn't mean that it puts you

22 with a problem you cannot deal with. No.

23 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] No, no.

24 JUDGE MARTIN-CANIVELL: It's incorrect, imprecise.

25 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] Yes. That's all I wanted.

Page 101

1 JUDGE MARTIN-CANIVELL: Thank you, Mr. Milovancevic.

2 So I turn now to Mr. Martic. This is the moment for you. You

3 remember we had another Status Conference just four months ago. It is the

4 moment for you now to tell to the Court what could be your problems. Do

5 you have any special issues you would like to present just now? And also,

6 what about your health, your situation in the prison? Do you have any

7 problems you would like to inform the Court about, their existence?

8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. As far as the conditions

9 of detention are concerned, I have nothing to complain about. I think

10 that the conditions are correct. The treatment of the officials and the

11 warden there are most proper.

12 The only complaint I have pertains to the proceedings. I believe

13 that there are some things that are not necessary when bringing indictees

14 here. You know that we are subjected to a search, body search, and that's

15 fine, but what I don't understand is that after we're finished here and

16 when we return back, the body search is carried out once again, and I

17 don't see any need for that. Is there anything you can do about that?

18 This is one particular complaint that I have. I think it is quite

19 unnecessary.

20 JUDGE MARTIN-CANIVELL: Well, thank you for telling me, but I

21 don't think I can do much about that. Anyway, I will try, but I am

22 logically informed that whenever you have to get out or go back to the

23 Detention Unit some searches have to be performed. So I am sorry, but I

24 don't think you can be dispensed with that.

25 I am glad to learn that your health condition is good and that you

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1 don't have any special complaints other than the ones that you had

2 submitted to this Court.

3 So please sit down. And nothing else is --

4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.

5 JUDGE MARTIN-CANIVELL: I see that Mr. Milovancevic would like to

6 say something. Please go ahead.

7 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] With your permission, Your

8 Honour, in addition to what I said about our progress we have achieved so

9 far in our contacts with the Prosecution, I wanted to say a few things

10 concerning the methods of payment.

11 The Defence right now is faced with something that could grow into

12 a serious problem. As Defence counsel, I had a duty to study the Rules,

13 because we have both oral and written contacts with the Registry, and I

14 have to say that the bills are reduced in such a way that could

15 potentially present a problem for the Defence in the future.

16 So far, I have avoided to trouble the Chamber with written

17 submissions, knowing how busy the Trial Chamber is, and I wish to express

18 hope that these problems will be resolved in the future and will not

19 deteriorate. We have a very serious task before us, a very responsible

20 task, and we are doing our best to carry out our duties in the best

21 possible way. However, we believe that the Registry, with all due respect

22 to their duty to verify all the invoices and so on, so despite of that, we

23 believe that the Registry should have in its mind that the Defence here is

24 doing a very serious job.

25 That's all I have to say. I hope that this will be resolved.

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1 Thank you.

2 JUDGE MARTIN-CANIVELL: Thank you, Mr. Milovancevic. As you know,

3 these problems are chiefly related with the action of the Registry, but

4 nevertheless, if it could be so complicated as to impair the possibility

5 of fairness in dealing with this case, the Chamber will take also care of

6 that.

7 I hope that you have been already said not to -- well, that is

8 something that has been advised to you to do, is just to try to manage

9 within the limitations, and I hope you are aware of that and you are

10 behaving in relation with that. But that is the most I can tell you for

11 the time being.

12 Okay. If nothing else is going to be suggested, I am going to

13 adjourn this meeting, not without thanking you all for coming, thanking

14 the Registry also, and last but not least to the translators. So the

15 meeting is adjourned.

16 --- Whereupon the Status Conference adjourned

17 at 3.23 p.m.