Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 737

1 Wednesday, 28 June 2000

2 [Status Conference]

3 [Open session]

4 [The accused entered court]

5 --- Upon commencing at 3.11 p.m.

6 JUDGE ROBINSON: Will the Registrar call the

7 case, please.

8 THE REGISTRAR: Good afternoon, Your Honour.

9 Case number IT-95-9-PT, the Prosecutor versus Milan

10 Simic, Miroslav Tadic, Stevan Todorovic and Simo Zaric.

11 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you. May we have the

12 appearances, please.

13 MS. PATERSON: Yes, Your Honour. Nancy

14 Paterson, for the Office of the Prosecutor, and with me

15 is Andrew Powell. Let me take this opportunity to

16 inform the Chamber that Grant Niemann, who until today

17 had been the senior trial attorney assigned to this

18 case, has now left the employment of the Tribunal. He

19 will longer be assigned to the case. From this date

20 forward I will be taking over as the lead attorney on

21 the case and will, in all probability, be assisted by

22 Suzanne Hayden, if and when this case ever goes to

23 trial, Your Honour.

24 JUDGE ROBINSON: And we wish Mr. Niemann the

25 best.

Page 738

1 For the Defence.

2 MR. ZECEVIC: Good afternoon, Your Honour.

3 Slobodan Zecevic for Milan Simic.

4 MR. PANTELIC: Good afternoon, Your Honour.

5 Igor Pantelic, on behalf of Mr. Miroslav Tadic.

6 MR. BRASHICH: Deyan Brashich on behalf of

7 the Todorovic Defence. Good afternoon, Your Honour.

8 MR. PISAREVIC: [Interpretation] Good

9 afternoon, Your Honour. My name is Borislav

10 Pisaveric. I'm representing Mr. Simo Zaric in this

11 case.

12 JUDGE ROBINSON: I'd just like to ensure that

13 Mr. Todorovic can hear the proceedings in a language

14 that he understands.

15 THE ACCUSED TODOROVIC: [Interpretation] Yes,

16 Your Honour.

17 JUDGE ROBINSON: The purpose of this hearing

18 is to hold a Status Conference to meet the requirements

19 of Rule 65 bis in which the accused is allowed to

20 raise questions concerning the case, and in particular,

21 questions relating to his conditions. Before I ask the

22 accused if he has anything to say in this regard, I'd

23 like to provide some information on some of the

24 outstanding issues.

25 The first relates to the hearing that was

Page 739

1 scheduled in relation to SFOR. The date that will be

2 fixed for that hearing will be the 28th of July.

3 That's the date that we are working towards: Friday,

4 the 28th of July.

5 Secondly, there is before the Chamber a

6 motion on behalf of Mr. Todorovic to provide the OTP to

7 provide the Defence with the name and address of a

8 particular individual. The Chamber will give a ruling

9 on this shortly, more than likely next week.

10 Thirdly, there is before the Chamber a motion

11 on behalf of Mr. Todorovic for judicial notice of

12 certain statements made by the OTP in a press release,

13 and the Chamber will give a ruling on this next week.

14 I now ask Mr. Todorovic whether he has

15 anything to say, either directly or through his

16 counsel.

17 MR. BRASHICH: Your Honour, Mr. Todorovic can

18 speak for himself.

19 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Todorovic.

20 THE ACCUSED TODOROVIC: [Interpretation] Your

21 Honour, thank you for this opportunity, but at present

22 I do not have anything to raise. Thank you.

23 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you very much.

24 Mr. Brashich.

25 MR. BRASHICH: Your Honour, with regard to

Page 740

1 some clarification, the Court had stated that we are

2 working towards July 28th as the date for the hearing.

3 Is that -- will that only be with regard to the motion

4 for judicial assistance as to SFOR, or will the Court

5 take further evidence on the issue of abduction and

6 kidnapping?

7 JUDGE ROBINSON: No, July 28th will be

8 confined to questions relating to SFOR. You will

9 recall that this issue has arisen and there is a

10 particular legal question that the Chamber faces and it

11 is that issue that the Chamber will deal with on the

12 28th.

13 MR. BRASHICH: Yes, Your Honour.

14 JUDGE ROBINSON: A further date will have to

15 be fixed for the -- what I might call the most

16 substantive hearing.

17 MR. BRASHICH: Thank you, Your Honour.

18 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Ms. Paterson.

19 MS. PATERSON: Yes, Your Honour, while we're

20 discussing that, as I have brought to the attention on

21 several occasion of this Chamber, it would be helpful

22 if we could be advised ahead of time the dates of some

23 of these proposed hearings.

24 As I am now essentially the only lawyer on

25 the case, I will bring to the attention of the Court

Page 741

1 today that I will not be available on the 28th of

2 July. I will be gone from the 27th of July until the

3 14th of August. If the hearing can be scheduled before

4 that date, I will be available, or after the 14th of

5 August, I will be available.

6 While, in theory, we should be able to find

7 another Prosecutor to stand up on the case, you are

8 aware that this matter involving Mr. Todorovic has gone

9 on for quite some time. I am the lawyer most familiar

10 with the facts related to the events involving

11 Mr. Todorovic and I believe it would be most practical

12 not only from our perspective, but from the Chamber's

13 perspective, to choose a date when I am available.

14 If that's not possible then obviously we'll

15 deal with that accordingly, but I wanted to bring that

16 to your attention.

17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you very much.

18 Well, it obviously makes sense to have you

19 participate, and the Chamber will take account of the

20 comments that you have made and we'll work through the

21 senior legal officer to try and find a convenient

22 date.

23 Mr. Brashich.

24 MR. BRASHICH: Your Honour, the position of

25 the Todorovic defence is that the Prosecution really

Page 742

1 doesn't have a position or should be heard on this

2 particular issue, this is between SFOR and the

3 Defence.

4 With regard to advancing the hearing, I would

5 welcome it. With regard to postponing it to a date

6 after Ms. Paterson's return, I would oppose it because

7 the whole concept, and I'm using the term "habeas

8 corpus" in a very loose sense since I'm very well aware

9 of the position that the Court has taken, but that is

10 an expedited hearing, and we have started the evidence

11 portion of the -- and I'm putting this in quotes

12 again -- of the "habeas corpus" hearing in November and

13 we are now in June and we're facing July.

14 So I would either, if Ms. Paterson wishes to

15 be present, I would join with her in an application to

16 advance the hearing to -- prior to July 14th. I

17 believe that's the date that she mentioned -- whatever

18 the date that Ms. Paterson is going away on vacation,

19 prior to that date, but I would oppose an adjournment

20 subsequent to her return.

21 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you very much. We'll

22 take account of all the comments that have been made

23 and we'll work through the senior legal officer who

24 will contact both of you.

25 Yes, Ms. Paterson.

Page 743

1 MS. PATERSON: Yes, Your Honour, if I could

2 just raise a couple of additional questions, I don't

3 know if you are prepared to answer them today but we

4 were wondering if you have any idea on when we can

5 expect a written decision on the Chamber's verdict in

6 the Rule 77 hearing.

7 JUDGE ROBINSON: Next week.

8 MS. PATERSON: And one other matter, we also

9 wanted to know if it might be possible for the Office

10 of the Prosecutor to get either some sort of a report,

11 be it oral or written, of the fact that the three

12 defendants who have been provisionally released are, in

13 fact, complying with the assurances and guarantees

14 given to this Court that they are reporting to the

15 police and everything is being done according to the

16 agreement.

17 I believe that the Office of the Prosecutor

18 is in a position to possibly know before the Court

19 would if something is amiss, but since none of this is

20 being brought to our attention, we are a bit in the

21 dark in regard to what is happening with this

22 situation.

23 JUDGE ROBINSON: The senior legal officer.

24 [Chamber confers with legal officer]

25 JUDGE ROBINSON: Ms. Paterson, I'm not aware

Page 744

1 of any procedure that would require such a report. But

2 obviously if you are aware -- if the Office of the

3 Prosecutor is aware of anything which is relevant to

4 the question of the conditions, then I think it should

5 be brought to the attention of the Chamber and, indeed,

6 that would apply to the Defence as well.

7 Yes, Mr. Pantelic.

8 MR. PANTELIC: Thank you, Your Honour. Just

9 a few comments which might get a little bit of light in

10 the Prosecutor's dark situation with regard to this

11 issue.

12 The members of the Prosecutor's office are

13 very welcome in the Samac area so they can, through

14 their representatives in Bosnia, easily contact police

15 authorities in Bosanski Samac as well as the

16 international police based in Modrica and the relevant

17 authorities of Republika Srpska government.

18 Defence don't see any particular reason not

19 to respond to the Prosecutor about this specific

20 situation in terms of the checking of the presence of

21 the accused so we could provide this list from the

22 local police office from Samac if it's necessary, of

23 course.

24 JUDGE ROBINSON: I think as officers of the

25 court, the members of the OTP and the Defence would --

Page 745

1 it would be very proper if they had information to pass

2 it on to the relevant authorities, and that's all that

3 I would say on this matter. Thank you both.

4 MR. PANTELIC: Thank you, Your Honour.

5 JUDGE ROBINSON: Does anyone wish to raise

6 any other issue?

7 I should say that under the requirements of

8 Rule 65, we'll have to have another Status Conference

9 before October 26th. But you will be informed of the

10 date. The hearing stands adjourned.

11 -- Whereupon the Status Conference

12 adjourned at 3.25 p.m.