Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

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1 Friday, 17 February 2006

2 [Status Conference]

3 [Open session]

4 [The appellant entered court]

5 --- Upon commencing at 8.00 a.m.

6 JUDGE GUNEY: [Interpretation] Good morning. Mr. Registrar, would

7 you please call the case scheduled on today's roll.

8 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honour, this is case number

9 IT-95-9-A, the Prosecutor versus Blagoje Simic.

10 JUDGE GUNEY: [Interpretation] Mr. Simic, can you hear and follow

11 the procedure in a language that you understand?

12 THE APPELLANT: [Interpretation] Yes.

13 JUDGE GUNEY: [Interpretation] Thank you.

14 I would like to ask the parties for the appearances, please. I'm

15 turning to the Office of the Prosecutor first.

16 MR. WIRTH: Good morning, Your Honour. I'm Steffen Wirth

17 appearing for the Prosecution, together with Peter Kremer, and our case

18 manager is Ms. Lourdes Galicia and Ms. Kim Fischer.

19 JUDGE GUNEY: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.

20 May I have the appearances of the Defence counsel of Mr. Simic,

21 please.

22 MR. PANTELIC: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honour. My name

23 is Mr. Pantelic.

24 MR. MURPHY: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honour, my name

25 is Peter Murphy and I also represent the accused.

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1 JUDGE GUNEY: [Interpretation] Mr. Simic has filed a notice to the

2 appeal against a judgement rendered on the 17th of October, 2003. Whilst

3 awaiting the Appeals Judgement Mr. Simic is detained at the UN Detention

4 Unit at The Hague in the Netherlands. Pursuant to the provisions of Rule

5 65 bis (B) of the Rules of Procedure and Evidence, a Status Conference is

6 convened within 120 days of the filing of the notice and every 120 days to

7 allow the person in custody, pending appeal, the opportunity to raise

8 issues in relation thereto including the mental and physical condition of

9 the person.

10 Mr. Simic, do you have any concerns or do you have any issues to

11 raise in relation to your mental and physical condition or in relation to

12 the condition, detention conditions?

13 THE APPELLANT: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I have no matters to

14 raise today. I have no particular comments in relation to either the

15 conditions in the detention or my health condition for the time being.

16 JUDGE GUNEY: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.

17 On 3 February 2006 the Appeals Chamber has decided proprio motu --

18 granted proprio motu the access to confidential material relating to

19 medical charts of Mr. Stevan Todorovic filed before the Trial Chamber in

20 the Todorovic case. These medical records relate to the 16th ground of

21 appeal of Mr. Simic. We acknowledge receiving the Prosecution's notice on

22 8 February 2006, and we are awaiting the time -- the delays to expire

23 while awaiting the allow -- while awaiting Mr. Todorovic to request

24 protective measures relating to the redaction of certain parts of the

25 report.

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1 I would like to remind the Defence of Mr. Simic that the order

2 granting this provision is so that they will have seven days to file any

3 additional submissions, and there is going to be a precise schedule for

4 eventually rebuttals and rejoinders. I would like to draw the attention

5 of the parties that only imperative reasons will allow the schedule to

6 change.

7 And finally, regarding the oral submissions, the circumstances

8 have not allowed the Appeals Chamber to find a correct -- or a date for

9 the end of this month. The appeals hearing was postponed for Monday, 20

10 March, 2006, at 9.00. I would like to ask Mr. Registrar to kindly hand

11 and send the parties a schedule -- Scheduling Order, to kindly hand the

12 parties the Scheduling Order regarding today's appeal hearing. Would you

13 kindly hand those orders. Thank you.

14 Thank you very much. And lastly, the Appeals Chamber has received

15 a joint motion filed by the parties on 19 January 2006 in which the

16 Prosecution and the Defence request to be kept abreast of issues and

17 particular points that the Chamber wishes to raise during the appeals

18 hearing, at least four weeks prior to the hearing. If the Scheduling

19 Order does not draw to the attention of the party issues of that type, the

20 Appeals Chamber will inform the parties as soon as the circumstances will

21 allow it.

22 I have no further issues to raise. I am inviting the parties to

23 make any observations or to raise issues that they would like to be

24 addressed.

25 I'm turning to the Office of the Prosecutor.

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1 MR. WIRTH: Thank you, Your Honour. We have nothing further to

2 raise.

3 JUDGE GUNEY: Thank you very much.

4 MR. MURPHY: Your Honour, I do have one matter to raise which

5 refers to the Court's order proprio motu regarding the medical records of

6 Mr. Todorovic. Your Honour, my understanding is that a Mr. Kostic, who

7 may be representing Mr. Todorovic as counsel, has written a letter in

8 which he does seek some protective measures with regard to the records.

9 And my understanding from the Office of the Prosecutor is that he has been

10 given until the 20th of this month, that would be next Monday, to

11 submit -- to make those submissions, after which I think we would then

12 have some time to respond pursuant to the Court's order.

13 Your Honour, my concern is this: If the medical records are

14 released to the Defence, Mr. Pantelic and I would of course wish to have

15 the benefit of some expert advice to -- to tell us, really, whether there

16 is anything material in those records to help the Court with the ground of

17 appeal, the 16th ground of appeal. And while we would try to do that as

18 quickly as possible, I'm not sure exactly how long it would take. We

19 would have to, of course, ask the permission of the registry to retain an

20 expert witness, and if the expert were to advise us that there was

21 something material in the records, we might then, at that stage, file a

22 motion allowing -- asking to be allowed to file the expert report with the

23 Court as additional evidence.

24 Your Honour, I mention that simply because the Court has given us

25 a schedule for the continued conduct of the appeal, and while we expect to

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1 be ready without any difficulty to meet that, and we are prepared to argue

2 the case at any time, Your Honour, there is that outstanding matter of

3 evidence which we will try to move along as fast as possible, but there is

4 some possibility that it may take a little longer than we think. And I

5 just want to draw the Court's attention to that in case we should have to

6 make a motion at some stage.

7 JUDGE GUNEY: [Interpretation] Very well. Thank you very much.

8 Do you have anything to add on that particular point?

9 MR. WIRTH: No, Your Honour, not at the time. We would -- we

10 would respond to any motion from the Defence when the time comes.

11 JUDGE GUNEY: [Interpretation] Very well. Thank you very much. We

12 will take into account what the parties have said. We will try to find a

13 solution to your problems, as you have presented it to us.

14 MR. MURPHY: Thank you, Your Honour.

15 JUDGE GUNEY: [Interpretation] Are there any other issues, further

16 issues to raise? No, I see. Very good. This being said, this hearing

17 stands adjourned. I thank you very much.

18 --- Whereupon the Status Conference

19 adjourned at 8.12 a.m.