1 Tuesday, 23 July 2002
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.05 a.m.
5 JUDGE MAY: Yes, Mr. Nice.
6 MR. NICE: Very briefly on timetable: After this witness, there's
7 a witness Radojkovic. On your list, that witness would be followed by K33
8 and K34. For reasons that we explored a little yesterday, K33 will have
9 to be put back until procedural issues are dealt with, and I understand
10 the lawyers for the Federal Republic are coming up tomorrow morning and
11 perhaps we'll be in a position to argue the matter on Thursday were that
12 otherwise to be convenient.
13 K34 is not in a position to start today. It simply isn't possible
14 for other reasons. Accordingly, were we to finish both those witnesses
15 whom I've named, it would be necessary to look beyond those K33 and K34.
16 We come to two witnesses, two crime-base witnesses. Jemini, although he's
17 gone through the 92 bis process here, we haven't yet made an application.
18 If I make a formal application now, the matter can at least be dealt with
19 although he's absolutely the sort of witness whose evidence should be
20 given live as to the very matter upon which he's being called here which
21 is conversations overheard. So it may be that he might be subject to 92
22 bis for part of his evidence.
23 Then there's Krasniqi, who is in a position to go ahead but we
24 have yet to have a ruling from you in relation to 92 bis.
25 I think the accused has been told this morning by the court
1 officer of the possibility of calling one or other of those crime-base
2 witnesses this morning, but I ought to put the matter on the record.
3 JUDGE MAY: The timetable will be this: The accused will have one
4 hour and three-quarters, up to that time, for cross-examination of this
6 We have considered Mr. Musa Krasniqi. He deals with new matter
7 which we haven't had evidence about, the prison, and therefore should give
8 evidence live.
9 The programme we have in mind is that on Thursday, we should hear
10 the submissions about Mr. Lilic. We should also bring forward -- it
11 seemed to us convenient to bring forward the Pre-Trial Conference. So we
12 don't deal with that in a rush, bring that forward to Thursday.
13 I don't know if you've seen the medical report on the accused yet.
14 MR. NICE: I have, and I was disturbed to discover that it hadn't
15 found its way to the Court by yesterday morning because I assumed you had
16 it in mind, but, yes, I have seen it.
17 JUDGE MAY: Yes. That clearly is a matter which will need to be
18 addressed, and I would have thought we need to allow an hour and a half
19 for those matters together.
20 MR. NICE: Certainly. Your Honour, the good news is that we'll
21 probably be less time with K34 than I'd originally thought. So if we
22 start him tomorrow but don't conclude him tomorrow, he may be perhaps, in
23 the vernacular we've been developing, wrapped around the procedural issues
24 on Thursday, concluding on Thursday or Friday, and then I'll lay plans to
25 use any balance of time on Friday.
1 JUDGE MAY: Well, he clearly must be finished by Friday, as indeed
2 must any other evidence, of course, that we embark on.
3 MR. NICE: Yes. Perhaps just by way of forecast, were we to find
4 ourselves with time to spare on Friday, it has occurred to us that it
5 might be useful to revert to the idea that I think came from the Bench of
6 taking the evidence of Philip Coo in chief, which would be a question of
7 going through such parts of the report as need legal argument and perhaps
8 touching on the parts of the report that need explanation in
9 examination-in-chief given that he's otherwise an expert whose report goes
10 in without much examination.
11 JUDGE MAY: Very well. We'll have the witness.
12 MR. NICE: Thank you.
13 [The witness entered court]
14 WITNESS: DRAGAN KARLEUSA [Resumed]
15 [Witness answered through interpreter]
16 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Karleusa, I'm sorry you've been kept waiting.
17 There were some administrative matters we had to deal with. You will now
18 be cross-examined by Mr. Milosevic. We have ruled in your absence that he
19 would have up to, if he requires it, an hour and three-quarters. We will,
20 of course, have the breaks at the usual time.
21 Could you remember, please, and Mr. Milosevic, could you remember,
22 please, that since you both speak the same language there is a real risk
23 that the interpreters get behind, so would you leave a pause between
24 question and answer.
1 Cross-examined by Mr. Milosevic:
2 Q. [Interpretation] The matter that you speak to in your written
3 statement and yesterday during your testimony, all that is based on
4 indirect knowledge, not based on your personal experience but based on
5 what you heard from different people regarding these events which
6 allegedly took place in 1999; is that correct?
7 A. For the most part, yes.
8 Q. Your first knowledge about that refrigerator truck, although you
9 had a long career in the Ministry of the Interior, was derived from the
10 article of the "Timok Crime Review" published in 2001.
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Did you also deal with other articles published in the Timok
13 region about the same event with different -- or the same interlocutors
14 but with different conclusions?
15 A. No.
16 Q. Did you deal with information published in the "Timok Crime
17 Review" of June 2001 where the diver, Zika Djordjevic, gives a different
18 explanation of the event than the one you gave?
19 A. I can't remember exactly, but I don't recall that his conclusions
20 were completely opposite to what we found.
21 Q. He says, "We've opened this refrigerator truck and we found bodies
22 but we don't know how many." He says he doesn't know how many.
23 A. It's possible that he doesn't know.
24 Q. So you think that's possible too. And are you aware that at that
25 time, regarding what you've just mentioned, it was published in regard to
1 Petrovo Selo that those mass graves date back to 1945 or 1955 when there
2 was some sort of liquidation operation after the Second World War. I
3 don't know what exactly it refers to. Do you know about that?
4 A. No, I don't. However, our insights and reports were not based to
5 that extent on his statement.
6 Q. Was it established to what time these graves in Petrovo Selo date
8 A. I don't know whether that has been established, but if it has,
9 that should be in the report of the expert team who carried out the
10 exhumation and post-mortems.
11 Q. Did you deal with the information published in the newspaper you
12 quote by the same author, published in September 1999 - the author is
13 Vitomirevic - and he says that he had seen a lorry with Swiss licence
14 plates which toppled and had contained bodies, and the bodies allegedly
15 fell out of the refrigerator lorry when it toppled.
16 A. I don't know about that. There were various stories which
17 circulated about an alleged traffic accident, for instance, and it was
18 said that these bodies found their way into the Danube in that way.
19 Q. In newspaper Politika, the 20th of May, even before your report,
20 published an interview with a certain Petrovic about a refrigerator lorry
21 falling into the river. Why didn't you deal with that as well? Although
22 he says that you had visited him indeed. This Branislav Petrovic says
24 A. At this moment, I don't know the name of that person. We did talk
25 to one person who allegedly had seen, at least that's what he says, how
1 the refrigerator truck fell into the river. However, considering the
2 objective circumstances on the site, as we concluded at that time in that
3 place, it was impossible for the refrigerator truck to fall into the river
4 in the way he describes.
5 Q. All right. But do you know about this statement - and he says you
6 do - it was published by Politika on the 20th of May, 2001, I quote:
7 "That night in March 1999, I was standing on the shore. About 20 metres
8 away I heard human voices. They carry well across the river at that time.
9 I didn't understand that language, but it wasn't Serbian or Romanian."
10 You know Romania is across the river. He says that the language was
11 neither Serbian nor Romanian. This man is a former smuggler of petrol.
12 And he knows, as he says in this article, very well about the contraband
13 of people across the Danube. Did you hear anything about this?
14 A. I am familiar with the statement of this person. On site we tried
15 to clarify whether something like that was possible. And I have already
16 said, considering what he said and the way he said it, and viewing the
17 site where he indicated where he was supposedly located at the time, and
18 without making any final conclusions, we thought that it was impossible.
19 And we are familiar with what he stated. He did state it.
20 Q. As a policeman who dealt with this matter of the refrigerator
21 truck, are you aware that there are cases when our police detected the
22 smuggling of people or illegal aliens hiding in refrigerator trucks or
23 other trucks and which are transported by the -- via the Vidin-Sipikovo
25 A. Yes, I am aware of that.
1 Q. I will read to you just one example from a briefing of the public
2 security office where it says -- state security office. It says: "Via
3 the canal Vidin-Sipikovo transport is taking place. Slobodan Vitomirevic
4 is involved in this --" that is the brother of the author engaged in this
5 crime review -- "Dejan called Zabar, and a certain Marinovic. Using
6 loopholes in the border crossing, and this is a well-used track, used for
7 the transport of gold and arms, the price asked of one person is 500
9 He further says that: "Three informers from Sipikovo whose names
10 would be notified later regularly inform the chief of police, but so far
11 there had been no reaction." Are you aware of this?
12 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreters ask the accused kindly to read more
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. I'm not aware of that. I am
15 aware of cases of smuggling of people, but I'm not aware of this
16 particular case.
17 JUDGE MAY: If you're reading, Mr. Milosevic, would you read more
18 slowly the interpreters ask.
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] All right, Mr. May.
20 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
21 Q. And have you established the following: The author of this
22 article from the Crime Review, which came as an introduction to my
23 transport to The Hague, his brother is involved in this transport and
24 contraband of people and forms part of a criminal group which is involved
25 in the contraband of people, heroin, cigarettes, vehicles, and so on and
1 so forth. Are you aware of that?
2 A. No, I'm not. But I know that SUP Zajecar has scored successes in
3 detecting such contraband.
4 Q. I will read to you again from the report of state security
5 offices, first about the contraband of arms. "Dragan and Slobodan
6 Vitomirevic at this time are in possession of the following revolvers and
7 pistols: Baretta 65, Browning, Walter, Skorpion, Heckler Koch, Colt Cobra
8 revolver, diamond-back rifle of a small calibre with a muffler, grenades.
9 SUP Zajecar has very precise operative information about arms, starting
10 from 1955 to date. All this information has been collected by Goran Tomic
11 together with his associates Mihajlovic and others."
12 And then on 8th July 2001 on border crossing Vrska Cuka, a truck
13 was halted - licence plates are indicated - it had a trailer driven by a
14 Bulgarian driver born in 1958, never mind where. He says the goods were
15 transported for Trnjekovo Enterprise owned by Slavisa and Suzana
16 Milenkovic, engaged in contraband of platinum and the importer was Aler
17 Cis importer, the forwarding agent was Dilertrans. When they were caught,
18 immediately Goran Tomic and this same Goran Vitomirevic showed up, they
19 intervened and the truck was allowed to cross the border. All this
20 information is in the possession of Slobodan Aleksic, chief of state
21 security Zajecar.
22 Are you aware of this information about the activities of this
23 criminal group and was there any investigation on the part of your working
25 A. Regarding our working group, there has been no investigation nor
1 did we have this information.
2 Q. So you were not aware of this state of affairs.
3 A. No.
4 Q. And did you get the Official Note drafted by the municipal public
5 prosecutor's office in Zajecar, which I have in front of me, where it
6 says: "The public prosecutor's office in Zajecar knows that Slobodan
7 Vitomirevic is a recidivist -" which means that he has a long police
8 record - "and apart from that, the public prosecutor's office in Zajecar
9 is informed that Slobodan Vitomirevic is heading a group involving
10 Miroslav Marinovic, a man nicknamed Zabar, and others which is bringing
11 cigarettes and other goods smuggled in large quantities into the area of
12 Zajecar. An order has been issued to verify this information." This is
13 an Official Note of the public prosecutor's office in Zajecar dated, as
14 you see, year 2001. I will provide it to be included into the evidence if
15 it is accepted because anything I offer or tender is rarely accepted, but
16 that is their problem.
17 Are you aware of this Official Note, of this report?
18 A. No, I'm not.
19 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Milosevic, you're not getting away with that.
20 That is not true, as you well know. Many of your exhibits have been
21 accepted if they are admissible. Now, if you want to put this document in
22 and if it's relevant, first of all, and if it's admissible, of course it
23 will be exhibited.
24 Perhaps the usher could go and get it, please.
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] What we're talking about here is a
1 criminal group which has all the strings in its hands, including those
2 controlling the contraband and smuggling of people, and they practically
3 did not involve a witness who could tell them whether it was their
4 refrigerator truck containing people who had drowned in a refrigerator
5 truck that had toppled and fell into the river, which they later, with the
6 help of their agents in the police and elsewhere, presented differently in
7 a media story.
8 Let's go on, however.
9 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. You said that General Djordjevic told you what happened
11 happened --
12 JUDGE MAY: No. Let the witness deal with the matter because it's
14 What is being suggested is that this truck did not contain corpses
15 from Kosovo but was in fact part of an operation to smuggle people, and so
16 the identification with Kosovo is incorrect.
17 Now, Mr. Karleusa, you carried out this investigation. Would you
18 like to comment on the suggestion which is now made, that you're mistaken
19 about this and really this was just part of a smuggling operation.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In our documents, that is the
21 documents of the working group, there are Official Notes which reflect
22 what our interlocutors, possible eyewitnesses, and other people who may
23 have been involved had told us. Based on those documents, we drafted two
24 communiques which we presented to the public. We did not go at that
25 moment into any conclusions as to whether those corpses belonged to people
1 of Albanian nationality or not, whether they were from Kosovo or not.
2 Instead, judging from all we could see on the site, we accepted that, and
3 we concluded, for instance, the following: Judging by the lettering on
4 the truck, Prizren Exporting Slaughterhouse Progres, we thought that it
5 might have been from Kosovo. We did not make any judgements about the
6 origins of the corpses.
7 We also tried to look for other facts which could corroborate this
8 indicia about the possibility that the people came from Kosovo. We waited
9 for the exhumations to be completed. But we said that once the bodies are
10 exhumed and autopsies carried out, it will be possible at that later stage
11 to establish where those people came from.
12 In the communiques, we said we had no basis for concluding that
13 the corpses belonged to people who came from Kosovo. We said we needed to
14 establish relevant facts first, which would probably indicate the origin
15 of those people.
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] All right. Can I continue, Mr. May?
17 JUDGE MAY: Well, in fact, the witness should go on to deal with
18 this: Did you then have information as to where the corpses came from
19 after the exhumation?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I would like to point out that
21 according to the results that were obtained by the expert team that
22 carried out the exhumation in the territory of Batajnica, and we know from
23 before or, rather, we have information from persons who transported these
24 bodies to Batajnica, that that is where they were buried as well.
25 According to the report of the expert team, we did not come to the
1 conclusion that these were bodies that were transported from Tekija or,
2 rather, from the refrigerator truck mentioned. That can be concluded on
3 the basis of the characteristics that we got from eyewitnesses or, rather,
4 from the technician who worked then and who works now and who was on the
5 site itself. And he could give us a description of the bodies, the
6 structure, rather, the number of men, women, children respectively, and
7 also the number of objects that were found there, and they were all buried
8 together. Therefore, we do not know where these bodies actually come
10 JUDGE MAY: Yes.
11 MR. SHIN: Just to deal quickly with the document provided by Mr.
12 Milosevic. The Prosecution notes that we are not able to deal with this
13 right now because it is only in Serbian, without a translation. One minor
14 observation; there's a fax line across the top indicating the date of
15 August 16th, 1999, whereas it appears that the document is from August 21,
16 2001. There may very well be a simple explanation for that.
17 JUDGE MAY: Mark it for identification and it can be translated.
18 Yes. Judge Kwon suggests rightly; let's put that to the witness and can
19 he help.
20 Mr. Karleusa, could you just have a look at that. If you've got
21 any comment about it, perhaps you could make it.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. Approximately Mr. Milosevic
23 did read some segments from this text, this document of the public
24 prosecutor's office of the municipality of Zajecar. As I said already, I
25 did not see this. I did not hear about this either.
1 The document is dated the 21st of August, 2001.
2 I don't know what else I should say in relation to this.
3 JUDGE MAY: It's the sort of document you've seen before, is it?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I have seen similar documents
5 before. This is the form used to compile Official Notes by public
6 prosecutors offices, the police, et cetera. However, I have not seen this
7 note, and I'm not aware of its contents.
8 JUDGE MAY: Very well. Thank you very much. If we get an exhibit
9 -- just a moment. Let's get an exhibit mark for it.
10 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be marked Defence Exhibit
11 D27, actually marked for identification.
12 JUDGE MAY: Thank you. Yes, Mr. Milosevic.
13 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. I hope, Mr. Karleusa, that you have noticed that at the end there
15 is a stamp and a signature, that is to say, of the public prosecutor.
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. I mean it is a regular type of Official Note compiled by the
18 public prosecutor's office as usual. Registered, signed, sealed, and
19 stamped. I hope that you managed to see that much.
20 A. Since this is a fax and since the elements that you are referring
21 to can be seen, it is possible that it may be so.
22 Q. In your statement, you said that General Djordjevic said to you,
23 "What happened, happened." If that is true, then why did you state in
24 your interview that you gave on the 1st of November to the newspaper Vreme
25 that Djordjevic did not say anything to you? I have a quotation here.
1 They ask you about Djordjevic, and your answer reads as follows: "Yes.
2 We tried to get in touch with him. He had been retired. While I still
3 did not know what was going on, I called him," and then you quote
4 yourself, "Rodjo, come, I have a truck and rumour has it that it has
5 something to do with the police. And when he came, I asked him --" again
6 you're quoting yourself -- "Do you know anything about the refrigerator
7 truck? He mumbled something. He didn't really say anything to me." Full
9 Is that right or is that not right?
10 A. That is what was written by the journalist who talked to me.
11 However, the truth is what I said in my statement and in my testimony here
12 before the Court.
13 As for journalists, I may have said things to them, and I may have
14 not said things to them. And whether they correctly transmitted it or
15 not, I don't know. I don't know whether I told them exactly the same
16 things I said before the Court, but sometimes I tell journalists a bit
17 less, sometimes I tell them a bit more.
18 Q. All right. But do explain this to me: What does it mean you -- I
19 mean, I keep saying your Official Note, but I don't mean you personally,
20 it's some kind of working group that signs this. And the Official Note is
21 signed on the 15th of May, the interview with Milan Stevanovic which you
22 submitted here as evidence. What does it mean that Frenki's men and
23 others were there? I mean, what's the point of that statement? Are you
24 trying to link them up with what you have been claiming here?
25 A. I wish to give you a twofold answer. First of all, I did not
1 submit a single document. That document was submitted by the court. And
2 how the court obtained that was for the Court to say, and they did.
3 Q. Excuse me for interrupting, but for all these documents that are
4 here attached to your statement were not attached by you but they were
5 attached by this other side over there; is that right?
6 A. I submitted these reports like all others with an appropriate
7 letter of the Ministry of the Interior and the then administration of the
8 crime police where I was deputy head. We sent all of that to the public
9 prosecutor's office. That is the truth.
10 Can I give you a further explanation and answer? What is recorded
11 in the Official Note is not what we stated. That is what the person we
12 interviewed stated. Whether that is correct or not is something that has
13 to be dealt with through future checks and the checks that were carried
14 out then.
15 Q. All right. When you took statements from various people, you did
16 not really take anything in writing or, rather, did you not take signed
17 statements. Why not?
18 A. Because it was our assessment that we should work this way.
19 Later, if necessary, statements could have been taken subsequently in the
20 form stipulated by Article 151 on the Law on Criminal Procedure. We
21 decided to do that by way of Official Notes because this was police
22 working material.
23 Q. So it is your testimony that you are giving here only on the basis
24 of police working materials.
25 A. Yes. On the basis of what we did, on the basis of what we heard,
1 and on the basis of what we obtained perhaps through the checks that we
2 conducted after interviewing people and maybe these checks corroborated
4 Q. Do you know that this is within the province of work of the
5 investigating judge?
6 A. At that time, we did not have any request put forth by the
7 investigating judge, because the investigating judge had no knowledge
8 about this. It was only later in relation to the knowledge that we
9 obtained, when we obtained certain indicia, that is, and when voluminous
10 material was compiled - I'm referring to Official Notes - it was only then
11 that the public prosecutor's office was informed and the investigating
12 judge, et cetera, as I have already said.
13 Q. All right. So what you have been saying is that all these
14 statements that you compiled were not signed, and you sent them to the
15 public prosecutor in Belgrade and then the public prosecutor started
16 dealing with this matter and that's all; is that right?
17 A. I told you, we did not submit statements. These are Official
18 Notes conducted by the police, and they contain what people said during
19 their interviews. As for what we had, we submitted that to the office of
20 the prosecutor.
21 Q. All right. In your statement, on page 2, paragraph 5, you say
22 that only a few days after the article appeared on the 1st of May, you
23 were invited to a meeting and you were informed that a working group would
24 be established with the assignment of establishing relevant facts that had
25 to do with the refrigerator truck. However, already on the 25th of May,
1 that is to say the very same month, after about two weeks, as far as I can
2 tell, I mean after the working group was established, you already gave a
3 press release where you presented the facts that you allegedly had
4 ascertained. Is that correct?
5 A. I was not informed that a working group would be formed. I got
6 instructions through General Sreten Lukic, and the instructions were
7 actually given by the minister to have a working group established, and
8 this was done. And it was not only two weeks that had gone by, much more
9 than that. I would like to point out that the working group straight away
10 started carrying out activities related to this matter, and that was about
11 20 days, it was not two weeks, as you had put it.
12 Q. All right. Let it be three weeks, Mr. Karleusa, but it is not
13 being contested that the working group was established in the beginning of
14 May and that your press release about what you allegedly found out was
15 released on the 25th of May. That is what is here within these dates.
16 So if the working group was established only in May and if you did
17 not have formal statements, if you only made these notes and you submitted
18 all of that to the office of the prosecutor, then why did you hastily make
19 such statements, press releases? Is this the usual practice?
20 A. If you look at the dates, if you look at the dates when the
21 interviews were carried out or, rather, if you look at the dates on the
22 Official Notes, you can see that this was considerably earlier, not when
23 the press release was made. The entire documentation in this regard was
24 not submitted in the month of May to the office of the prosecutor but
25 considerably later, and we then gathered what we call information, and
1 then we carried out checks with regard to what we had learned.
2 What we had, we presented to the public, because there was great
3 public pressure that was brought to bear so that people could find out
4 what had actually happened.
5 Q. Tell me, please, because I imagine it is not being challenged that
6 you gave this statement on the 25th of May. Actually, this is your press
7 release; is that right? The information you provided to the public.
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And you started working sometime in the beginning of May. So on
10 the 25th of May, you made this statement. Can you answer the following
11 question: Was there a political reason behind this, a reason related to
12 political marketing? Was that behind this press release? Was this media
13 preparation for my hand-over to The Hague, because your press conference
14 was roughly just before that.
15 JUDGE MAY: One thing at a time. The first question is the
16 political marketing, as it's put. Was there a political reason for it or
17 political pressure?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] We did not have any political
19 reasons. We, as policemen and also my working group - and I am proud of
20 its work - we were not engaged in politics. We presented what we learned
21 during the course of our work, and we did present that.
22 Now, why was it necessary then? Already during the month of May,
23 immediately after this was made public or, rather, after the article was
24 carried in the Zajecar crime review, the prosecutor also spoke in public.
25 This is the district public attorney in Negotin.
1 All these writings caused considerable unrest among the public,
2 and we thought that we should show that we are not remaining silent in the
3 face of this. We want to check this out and investigate it. That was my
4 job. And I personally do not see this as politics, and I personally don't
5 want to have anything to do with political matters.
6 Q. All right. You said that you did all of that in May, and there
7 were 30 interviews, as you said yesterday. Information was gathered. A
8 lot of other things were done in May. All right, let's not say 14 days, a
9 bit more than 14 days.
10 Now, tell me, from that moment onwards, as far as I can see
11 according to this information you provided when you made this public
12 statement, to the present day you did not make any headway in your
13 investigation. There are no new facts except for what you published then.
14 A. I would not agree with you. There are certain facts and certain
15 data that are still being processed, and this could be called headway, as
16 you had put it. I cannot speak about that right now. I will speak about
17 it if I am required to do so when we have sufficient arguments for that.
18 Q. All right. So when you gave your statement, you did not have
19 sufficient arguments, so you gave what you could give on the basis of what
20 you did within 14 days. And then 14 months went by and you did not make
21 any statement as to what you had done during those 14 months. I assumed
22 that after I was handed over to The Hague there was no further motive to
23 insist on it any longer; right?
24 A. I have to tell you the following, and that is from the moment when
25 we informed the office of the prosecutor, the prosecutor's office or,
1 rather, the district court in Belgrade took over everything that had to do
2 with press releases and statements made to the public. We acted only on
3 the instructions given to us by the prosecutor's office. We are not
4 authorised to give the results of possible conclusions and investigations
5 that we came to in this regard. If necessary, the office of the
6 prosecutor in Belgrade can give their views on this.
7 Q. All right, let me ask you as a policeman with vast experience - if
8 I remember correctly, you've been working in the police force for 27
9 years, that's what we heard yesterday - isn't it logical to establish
10 first and foremost who these people are, where, how they were killed, and
11 who killed them, and only then to draw conclusions? I should think that
12 every investigation regarding a body that is found has to give answers to
13 these questions first.
14 A. Yes. We have got that problem, because if we are talking about
15 the refrigerator truck, the bodies have not been identified yet. That's
16 the problem. Not only in the case of the refrigerator truck but also
17 other bodies that were found. This does not depend on us. The
18 identification of such a large number of bodies that was referred to here
19 is something that goes very slowly, as is well-known. And we, as the
20 police, expect to obtain the results of this identification process so
21 that we could work in the following direction, that is to say where these
22 people come from, and then we will see what happened, if anything, in that
23 area, who is missing, who worked there, and who the possible perpetrator
24 may be. We are working on the establishment of all relevant facts. First
25 of all, who perpetrated the crime; secondly, where these people come from;
1 and thirdly, that the perpetrators be established individually.
2 Q. I assumed that this is the task of the judiciary organs and the
3 police to answer these questions, who they were, where they were killed,
4 who killed them, in order to make further progress. I'm glad that you
5 agree with this.
6 Now, tell me, please, in the public release, in the press release
7 you quote on page 3, you say that Vlajko Stojiljkovic, the then Minister
8 of the Interior and the head of public security, Vlastimir Djordjevic,
9 proclaimed that the entire case was a state secret, and in this
10 connection, they started an action called Depth 2, Dubina 2. Did any
11 markings in this relation exist anywhere? Did you ever see anything of
12 this nature?
13 A. No. If -- actually, we found out that this was a state secret
14 because it was said then that this should be considered strictly
15 confidential, a state secret, and that no information should be given to
16 the public. We got this information from the then head of the SUP of Bor,
17 from the then district public attorney in Negotin, and other persons who
18 were all invoking that order.
19 There is a document on which there is this kind of marking,
20 "strictly confidential, state secret," and it speaks of payments made
21 subsequently for the physical work of the persons who were carrying the
22 bodies out of the refrigerator truck.
23 Q. Tell me, please, what kind of secret information is this, engaging
24 workers from the company called Higijena or Komunalac or whatever, that is
25 to say, street sweepers or grave diggers? What kind of operation is this?
1 A. According to the statements given to us by persons who took part
2 in this, that's the way it was. At that time, that's the way it was. We
3 could not influence it then.
4 Now, why it was so, I do not know.
5 Q. All right. Let me just look up one thing. On page 4 of your
6 statement, you say, inter alia, that operative information gathered by the
7 working group indicate that in March 1999, a meeting was held in my
8 office, attended by Vlajko Stojiljkovic, Vlastimir Djordjevic, and Rade
9 Markovic, that Djordjevic raised the issue of mopping up the terrain and
10 that I allegedly ordered Vlajko Stojiljkovic to undertake measures to
11 remove any traces that could be potentially indicative of the existence of
12 evidence regarding the committed crimes.
13 Here it is on page 4 of your statement. You say: "On that
14 occasion, General Djordjevic raised the issue of mopping up in the
15 territory of Kosovo and Metohija as a problem. That is, a clean-up of
16 terrain in the area of Kosovo and Metohija. In this connection, Slobodan
17 Milosevic ordered Vlajko Stojiljkovic to take measures for the removal of
18 all vestiges potentially indicative of the existence of crimes..." and so
19 on and so forth.
20 First of all, he speaks about a clean-up operation and then I do
21 not respond to what he says, I instead give different orders, and then
22 comes a senior staff meeting of the Ministry of the Interior where the
23 same problem of clean-up actions is reviewed.
24 Did you attend this meeting, first of all?
25 A. Which meeting?
1 Q. This meeting that you say -- where you say I ordered the removal
2 of all traces of crimes.
3 A. Do you mean the meeting that was said to have been held in your
5 Q. Yes.
6 A. No, I did not attend that meeting.
7 Q. Do you make any distinction between a clean-up of the territory
8 and removal of traces of crimes?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Do you assume, then, that the head of state issues such orders in
11 response to a problem of mopping up being raised, that he issues orders to
12 remove traces of crimes? Do you know how many times it has been insisted
13 on precisely the opposite, to apprehend all perpetrators of crimes, to
14 call everyone to task for any infraction or violation? Do you know about
15 such orders and instructions?
16 A. You asked several questions in one. I will try to answer them in
17 sequence. Saying that such a meeting was held in your office in March is
18 not something that we did or invented. That is something that Rade
19 Markovic stated. What we know, we know from Mr. Rade Markovic, and he is
20 the source of this information, of this allegation, if you want.
21 Then you talked about the mopping up or clean-up operation --
22 Q. Let us --
23 JUDGE MAY: Let the witness finish what he's saying.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I have no doubt in my mind what the
25 mopping-up or clean-up operation means. That term was used properly and
1 improperly in the media. But I'm not here to make any conclusions. It's
2 not my job. My job was to report what was said, and that's the way we
3 conveyed it.
4 In my statement given to the investigators of this Tribunal, I
5 only repeated what we stated in our press release, the way we were
6 informed of the matter, and quoting operative information that had been
7 collected - that's all we had at the time - we said all we could say,
8 although we can today indicate the source of this information.
9 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. You say this information came from Rade Markovic. I don't believe
11 he could have stated anything of the kind, nor than anyone else could have
12 said it considering that it is absolutely untrue. But please, would you
13 answer the question I asked you regarding your own statement that I
15 You say further on in your statement: "I am not certain who the
16 source of this information is, although I was apprised of it at a MUP
17 meeting. It was my understanding that the information most likely came
18 from one of the participants of the meeting held in Milosevic's office."
19 Then you go on to say further below: "We also talked with Obrad
20 Stojanovic but he basically denied any involvement in these events. We
21 also spoke to General Dragan Ilic, Stojan Misic, and Petar Zekovic but all
22 denied any involvement. We in fact spoke to many of the administration
23 chiefs, the assistant minister, and the chef de cabinet but they all
24 denied any knowledge. None of them offered the working group any
25 information relating to the mopping-up operation in Kosovo or any
1 knowledge of the refrigerator lorry case."
2 In this statement, thus, you say that you have no idea who the
3 source of information is, it was just conveyed to you at the time, and
4 here you are saying that your source is Markovic.
5 JUDGE MAY: You must put a question to the witness so he can deal
6 with it fairly.
7 Mr. Karleusa, have you heard what's been read out?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I've heard it, but I would like
9 to hear a specific question.
10 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. So in your statement, you said that you did not know where the
12 information originated, this piece of information which you now claim you
13 received from Rade Markovic.
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Did you speak to Rade Markovic?
16 A. No.
17 Q. Did the working group speak to him?
18 A. No.
19 Q. Then on the basis of what did you as the working group conclude
20 that Rade Markovic had told you about a meeting held in my office and
21 orders issued not to conduct a mopping-up operation but to remove traces
22 of crimes? How did you or the working group come to such a conclusion?
23 A. At a meeting which --
24 Q. What?
25 A. At a meeting which I mentioned both in my statement and in my
1 testimony, I saw with my own eyes a signed statement made by Mr. Rade
2 Markovic which states specifically what I quoted here. At a time when two
3 -- I gave my statement to the investigator of the OTP in Belgrade. I did
4 not specify the source. I specified the source here. That, too, is
6 Q. Fine. Then how did you establish, considering that the working
7 group had not spoken to Markovic, that he had given that statement?
8 A. I saw a signed statement by Mr. Rade Markovic with my own eyes,
9 and I had the opportunity to read it. It was an official statement,
10 properly recorded by a recording secretary, bearing a date and signature,
11 and so on and so forth.
12 Q. So you saw this statement. You say: "I have a record of a trial
13 proceedings dated 28th of May, 2002, drafted in the District Court of
14 Belgrade. It concerns Rade Markovic."
15 It explains, for instance, that a witness, Goran Petkovic, an
16 official of the state security office, he says a meeting was held on the
17 31st of May and was held at the headquarters of the state security sector
18 in Banjica, Belgrade.
19 Then it says Markovic was brought to the meeting by Mijatovic and
20 Galic, then chief of the state security sector. Further on, the witness
21 explains that no record was made nor was an Official Note drafted of that
22 interview because the accused Markovic did not state anything of
23 importance which would require such an action, that is, the drafting of an
24 Official Note.
25 Q. Furthermore, in response to the question by accused Markovic to
1 the witness whether he remembers what he was told in the corridor, the
2 witness said it was an irony of fate that he and Mijatovic were in the
3 process of attempting to get the accused Markovic out of gaol. It is
4 noted the accused Markovic says he can swear on his child's life about all
5 he says about the contents of that conversation.
6 This is not a note. This is a record of a child.
7 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Milosevic, we must come to the point. What is the
8 point of what you're reading out?
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] The point is, Mr. May, that
10 witnesses at trial claim that there was no record of that interview when
11 Markovic was taken out of gaol without any court order, illegally, to make
12 statements. No record or Official Note was made. And it was subsequent
13 orchestration and engineering and fabrication of something that Markovic
14 allegedly said, a man who is in the dungeons of the central prison for
15 more than a year now.
16 JUDGE MAY: Let us try and understand what's being put. Are you
17 saying there could have been no statement which the witness could have
18 seen because Markovic was in prison at the time and there's no record of
19 him being removed? Is that the point?
20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I'm only saying that if this witness
21 ever saw something, it must be a fabrication. It can't be the truth.
22 I'll tell you what the Minister of Interior Affairs says.
23 JUDGE MAY: No. You let the witness deal with these matters.
24 Mr. Karleusa, you've heard what's being suggested. Can you
25 comment on that?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The truth is that I have seen a
2 statement by Mr. Rade Markovic bearing his signature - I suppose it was
3 his signature - indicating all his personal details, and the statement was
4 in the proper, due format, typical of such a statement.
5 It is true that in my statement given to the investigators of the
6 OTP and my testimony before this Court is true. I would not like to make
7 any comments upon your allegations. What I saw at the time as a
8 representative of the working group was the basis for my information.
9 That's the way we gathered information. We didn't have to go there
11 I told you how we came by this piece of information. We got it
12 that way, and that is the truth. We received it in May 2001, before we
13 went public with it. That is the truth.
14 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. Dusan Mihajlovic, according to this record, says the witness
16 agreed to conduct an interview with Markovic, which was published on the
17 31st of May, 2001, and this interview was conducted on the premises of the
18 State Security Service in Banjica. It was attended by both Mijatovic and
19 Petrovic, and he says: "I don't know whether a record was made of this
20 interview or an Official Note, because there was no information revealed.
21 No promises were made to Markovic in the form of possible release or
22 financial assistance. Therefore, my point is, he says no record was made.
23 And he says it was precisely Mijatovic who told him that the subject of
24 the conversation was Slobodan Milosevic.
25 Do you know, according to what the parliamentary investigative
1 committees published, what pressure was brought to bear on Radovic -- on
2 Rade Markovic to accuse me of something in the circumstances of extreme
3 duress which lasted for over a year, and torture?
4 A. That's what I learnt from the media.
5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I hope, Mr. May, that you will
6 accept this record of trial proceedings before the District Court in
8 JUDGE MAY: We will deal with it in the same way. Collect it, the
9 Prosecution can see it, it will be marked for identification.
10 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Karleusa, do you think you know where the alleged
11 -- the statement of Markovic is now?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, I don't know where this
13 statement by Mr. Markovic is now.
14 JUDGE KWON: Who showed you the statement at that time?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I saw that statement personally at a
16 senior MUP staff meeting at which I was presenting my progress report in
17 the refrigerator lorry case. That statement was shown to me in the
18 context of the reason for my presence at that meeting. I don't have it in
19 my possession, nor does the working group have it.
20 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
21 Q. All right. Will you please answer this question: Since I quoted
22 to you part of your own statement underlying this testimony where you say
23 you ignore the source of this information concerning the meeting in my
24 office and then you say that you had spoken to all the participants,
25 Stojiljkovic, Djordjevic, Obrad Stojanovic, Dragan Minic, Stojan Misic --
1 JUDGE MAY: You've read all that out. There's no need to read it
2 again. If you have a question, ask it.
3 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
4 Q. None of these people gave you a single piece of information that
5 would corroborate what you said in your statement, in your press release.
6 You didn't get a single piece of information corroborating the claims made
7 in your communique. Why, then, did you present this lie?
8 A. We presented that in order to give the public our findings. We
9 did not say that that was the truth. We presented what we had learned
10 until then. And that operative activity in terms of the establishment of
11 all facts was still under way. That's the truth.
12 Q. All right. But you said that there is some kind of information
13 with regard to some alleged meeting held in my office sometime around the
14 25th of May; is that right?
15 A. We found out about that. I personally -- I personally attended
16 that meeting, and this was before the 25th of May.
17 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Shin, please.
18 MR. SHIN: Your Honour, this document, this last document as well
19 is only in Serbian so the Prosecution will not be able to deal with it at
20 this time.
21 JUDGE MAY: It can be marked for identification.
22 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, this will be marked for
23 identification as D28.
24 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. So you found out, on the basis of the statement made by Rade
1 Markovic, as you said now before the 25th of May, and he was talked to, as
2 it can be seen here, after that date. How could you find out about that
3 before he was actually talked to?
4 A. I am telling you and I am stating before this Court what I saw.
5 What I'm saying is the full truth. I saw the statement made by Mr. Rade
6 Markovic, a regular type of statement. The way a statement should be.
7 I don't know what you have been saying, that there is a statement
8 dated later. Perhaps he was interviewed several times with regard to this
9 same subject.
10 Q. All right. Does it seem to you that this was also within the
11 preparations for taking me to The Hague? And you know that that was
12 illegal, unconstitutional, and criminal.
13 JUDGE MAY: It's not for the witness to comment on that.
14 Mr. Karleusa -- this will be the final question on this topic, Mr.
15 Milosevic. It's suggested that the comment or the comments about Mr.
16 Markovic and the report of the meeting was part of the preparation to send
17 Mr. Milosevic here. Is there any truth in that or not?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I am not involved in any such thing
19 and I cannot say anything about this. That is not my opinion, though.
20 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
21 Q. You say in your statement, on page 5, that the statement contains
22 information obtained from Bosko Radojkovic, and also that he got the
23 impression that all the corpses had sustained injuries by blunt objects,
24 et cetera. So my question is: Why are you relying on Radojkovic's
25 statement only in your communique when he is not an expert in how injuries
1 are sustained?
2 A. Mr. Bosko Radojkovic is an exceptionally experienced technician.
3 As far as I know, since I took part in the interview on the basis of which
4 an Official Note was made with Mr. Bosko Radojkovic, I know and I came to
5 the conclusion that he has vast experience and that what he said is based
6 on considerable arguments. My impression was that his statement about
7 this was truthful.
8 I asked him how he came to this conclusion, and he said that in
9 his practice, he had seen hundreds of consequences of death and
10 investigated hundreds of such cases. And since he is in that area, he has
11 dealt with many cases of bodies that were taken out of the water, of
12 people who had drowned. So that is not my statement, that is what he
14 Q. Oh, does that mean that these people had drowned?
15 A. No. I said that he had experience with people who had drowned and
16 with corpses. He gave his preliminary findings at police level. It is
17 quite clear that, subsequently, it was for forensic experts to establish
18 the cause of death in the case of the bodies found.
19 Q. Could you please explain to me what the criteria were that you
20 used in terms of establishing which information you will take as valid and
21 which information you will not consider as valid?
22 For example, yesterday you said that somebody had stated that
23 these bodies had KLA uniforms on them, and afterwards, you said that these
24 bodies did not have KLA uniforms on them. How did you opt for one of the
25 two, whether they did wear KLA uniforms or not?
1 Or another example: You say that Radojkovic --
2 JUDGE MAY: Let him deal with one at a time. No. No. Let him
3 deal -- you've put the example to him, let him deal with it.
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] What is your question?
5 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. You use statements; right? Statements are the only basis for your
7 reports. You don't have material facts. You have statements.
8 So you have a statement that they wore KLA uniforms, and then you
9 have a statement that they were not wearing KLA uniforms, and then you opt
10 for the statement that they did not wear KLA uniforms.
11 So according to what criterion do you decide which statement you
12 are going to accept as relevant, to use your words? I mean, I'm not
13 insisting they were wearing KLA uniforms. I'm not insisting they were
14 from Kosovo at all. I'm not even insisting on that particular year. I'm
15 not insisting on anything. I'm simply asking you what your criteria are.
16 JUDGE MAY: Let the witness answer.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] According to the same criteria on
18 the basis of which we came to the knowledge that some of the corpses had
19 KLA uniforms, according to the same criterion, we had to rectify this,
20 that bodies with KLA uniforms had not been found, because Mr. Radojkovic
21 was the direct source of that information. So this was a mistake. Either
22 he said it that way and that was recorded, but at any rate, he revised it
23 afterwards. In this connection, we could not invent anything nor did we
24 have any reason to invent anything.
25 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. I'm not asking you whether you invented anything. I'm just asking
2 you according to which criterion do you accept some information and
3 respect others and put it all together?
4 That was just one example but here's another example: Radojkovic,
5 in his statement that you took down, said that in his assessment, these
6 people had been killed two days before that. And for example, according
7 to the statement that you took from Nenad Popovic, a crime operations
8 officer of MUP Kladovo, on the last page of that statement, it says that
9 the bodies were in a state of decay.
10 Now, could you explain that? Why is it important that your
11 conclusions should be based on one statement and not on the other one?
12 Because obviously both saw these corpses. That is what both of them
14 A. In this case, it is not a question of findings, it is a question
15 of knowledge.
16 Mr. Bosko Radojkovic presented convincingly the position that
17 these were bodies that were not in a state of visible decay. What he said
18 was recorded in the Official Note and that is how we conveyed that. We
19 thought that other persons had not been in such contact nor could they
20 speak with the kind of knowledge that Mr. Radojkovic had.
21 Q. All right. But this Nenad Popovic, this crime technician, he also
22 saw that, or, rather, he is a crime operations officer. So why do you
23 give advantage to one and not the other? Both are approximately qualified
24 to the same extent to infer such things, or perhaps equally unqualified to
25 infer such things because neither of them are forensic experts.
1 A. I pointed out that Bosko Radojkovic is a crime technician, a
2 professional crime technician with vast experience.
3 This other gentleman, the operations officer, most probably did
4 not have that kind of experience but he said what he said, and Bosko
5 Radojkovic said what he said, and all of this is contained in their
6 statements. As far as I know, all of this is presented here before this
7 Court in the annexures.
8 Q. All right. In your statement on the 25th of May, the press
9 release, you say that there were over 50 bodies, and then you say that
10 Radojkovic said that there were 86 bodies, and the one who opened the
11 refrigerator truck said that there were 30. Who established how many
12 corpses there were there? How did you establish that? Again, is it only
13 Radojkovic's assertion that is taken into account or the assertions of all
15 A. The knowledge that we have that there was 50 or that there was 30
16 is actually a question of free estimates of the persons who were there.
17 What it looked like, to put it that way.
18 As for the definite count, that was carried out when the bodies
19 were being placed in the truck. In the first one, there were 30; in the
20 other one, there were 58.
21 In addition to Bosko Radojkovic, this was counted by somebody
23 I remember now that, in his statement, Bosko Radojkovic said
24 unequivocally that there were 58. And everything else was the way he had
25 put it in his statement.
1 Q. All right. Let us try to keep this time as short as possible.
2 You did not attend the exhumation of the corpses; is that right?
3 A. I did attend the exhumation of the corpses.
4 Q. All right. It was my understanding that the police can only
5 provide security on the exhumation sites, that they did not have the right
6 to attend exhumations because this is expert work carried out by persons
7 in charge of that. Isn't that the way it is, according to regulations?
8 A. No.
9 Q. All right. Do you know what the results of the analysis were
10 after the exhumation of the corpses that were found in Batajnica?
11 A. I did not read the report of the expert team that carried out the
12 exhumation. This report was submitted to the district public attorney who
13 was in charge of the proceedings related to the exhumations.
14 Q. Is it true that until the present day the cause of death was not
16 A. Possibly. I did not read the report. The bodies were not
17 identified. And I pointed out then that that was a major problem.
18 Preliminary identifications were carried out, incomplete, and in our
19 opinion, this is only an indication that perhaps most probably these are
20 persons whose identification documents we did find on the actual site, but
21 the bodies were not identified the way they have to be identified in order
22 to treat this seriously and with certainty.
23 Q. Is it correct that the identity of these corpses has not been
24 established until the present day, or the place of death or where the
25 bodies originate from?
1 A. I do have some knowledge in this regard, but I also have
2 information that some have been fully identified by now. I don't know
4 Q. All right. But everything that you mentioned in connection with
5 Batajnica again has nothing to do with these corpses from the refrigerator
6 body, because you did not -- you did not find them yet and they were not
8 A. As far as I know, according to the description provided by
9 Mr. Radojkovic in terms of the number, characteristics, structure, et
10 cetera, it seems to me that we have not found these bodies, or, rather,
11 that they had not been found during the exhumations that were carried out.
12 Please, may I just correct one more thing? I am relying on the
13 exhumation called Batajnica 1. I don't know whether during the course of
14 the exhumation of the mass grave BA2, Batajnica 2, bodies were found in
15 this connection, because there is a large number of exhumed bodies there.
16 Q. As you say in your statement, on page 9, in connection with what
17 you are saying about Batajnica, you had the impression that these bodies
18 originate from Kosovo. Based on what did you have this impression?
19 A. I wouldn't put it that way, that it was my impression. I was just
20 trying to conclude based on what had been found on the site and presented
21 officially, such as ID cards and other documents, that much has been
22 established and documented; namely, these documents were issued in the
23 name of ethnic Albanians, and they were mainly issued in a locality called
24 Suva Reka in Kosovo.
25 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Milosevic, the time has come for the adjournment.
1 Mr. Karleusa, we're going to adjourn now for 20 minutes. Would
2 you be back, please, at the end of that.
3 --- Recess taken at 10.30 a.m.
4 --- On resuming at 10.55 a.m.
5 JUDGE MAY: Yes, Mr. Milosevic.
6 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. So, Mr. Karleusa, let us just clear up this matter. You've just
8 mentioned ID cards from Suva Reka. But you are saying that, based on
9 that, you think the bodies are from Kosovo. How can you claim that the
10 bodies from the refrigerator lorry were from Kosovo when they haven't been
11 even found yet?
12 A. I am not claiming either. We are not claiming that the bodies
13 from the refrigerator lorry are from Kosovo, but there are statements and
14 information which indicate that it is so.
15 And as for the ID cards that have been found, we, the police, know
16 that if a certain document is found next to a body, it doesn't mean it
17 belongs with the body. That is why I underlined the importance of full
18 identification of the bodies so that we can establish where they come
19 from, which would enable further proper investigation in the right
21 Q. But is this claim of yours quite clear, that the bodies from the
22 refrigerator lorry haven't been found yet?
23 A. As far as I know, the elements which could be acceptable as proof
24 have not been found. I have stressed that I am not familiar with the
25 forensic report on Batajnica 2 where about 270 bodies were exhumed. It is
1 possible that some of these bodies were related to our case but I don't
2 know for sure.
3 Q. So you don't know whether the bodies relating to your case have
4 been found.
5 A. No.
6 Q. All right. Since you say that an ID card can indicate that the
7 bodies are from Kosovo, what do you think of this paper enumerating
8 various objects and documents? One of them is the membership card of a
9 deputy from -- to the Congress of the Socialist Party of Serbia. What do
10 you think of that as an indication?
11 A. I can't say. I don't know about the existence of such a document.
12 Q. Well, here it is on the list of objects recovered in Batajnica.
13 You have said a moment ago that you attended the exhumations. I
14 have a record here of the district court in Belgrade on the exhumations
15 and post-mortems conducted on the premises of police headquarters, dated
16 the 19th of July, and the report indicates the names of the teams of
17 experts and the other persons present. Your name is nowhere here.
18 Don't you think that if you attended, your name should be on the
19 list of those who attended?
20 A. I was not a member of the expert team nor was I officially
21 supposed to attend as a policeman. I was present from time to time for a
22 while, which is quite enough to gain an impression of what it is all
23 about. And I was continuously informed of the progress made on the site
24 relating to the exhumations, considering that one of the members of the
25 forensic team was our own crime technician of our crime investigations
1 technical centre who photographed and otherwise documented everything that
2 he was required to by the leader of the expert team.
3 Q. Since you say on page 9 that the data collected through the work
4 of the working group indicate that the bodies from the refrigerator lorry
5 have not been exhumed to date, how did you establish that?
6 A. I told you, we haven't established it. We just have no
7 confirmation that they were exhumed.
8 Q. You say on page 9 that 70 something bodies were exhumed in Petrovo
9 Selo, that they were examined and that the impression was they originate
10 from Kosovo. How could you have that impression if you did not attend the
12 A. Based on the expert team's report and the fact that a number of ID
13 cards were also found on that site in addition to other documents issued
14 in the names of ethnic Albanians. And second, according to witness
15 statements, that is, a statement of one particular witness who said that
16 he brought to that site a truck containing human bodies.
17 Q. What?
18 A. Human bodies.
19 Q. Is it true that the cause of death has not been established to
21 A. I haven't read in detail the post-mortem reports for these bodies,
22 and I cannot say anything specific about that. But I do know that with
23 the exception of three bodies, the rest have not been identified, and the
24 identification process for these bodies is under way using DNA analysis.
25 Q. About those three which you say were identified, where do they
1 come from?
2 A. Those are three persons, Bytyqi brothers.
3 Q. So the identities of the others have not been established?
4 A. No, not as far as I know. I know only about those three persons,
5 and their identification was contributed to by foreign forensic teams.
6 Q. You say in your statement that on Bajna Basta site another
7 exhumation took place, and again you state your own assumptions, which I
8 don't see any grounds for, to the effect that they may originate from
9 Kosovo. Is that correct?
10 A. Yes. It is true that on the bank of Perucac Lake we identified --
11 Q. That is not disputed. How do you claim they are from Kosovo if
12 you have no information to corroborate it?
13 A. I don't claim anything. I'm conveying certain insights and
14 indicia regarding that, and that will be established definitively in the
15 future when the bodies are identified.
16 Q. So it is true that to date these bodies have not been identified
17 or their origins or cause of death or anything else primarily; how they
18 met their death, who killed them and so on and so forth.
19 A. As far as I know, the bodies have not been identified to date.
20 Q. And you are not involved in any investigation regarding mass
21 graves or war crimes, are you?
22 A. I don't understand your question.
23 Q. I'm saying you're not involved in any investigations concerning
24 war crimes or mass graves. You say that on page 8.
25 A. When the administration for combatting organised crime established
1 and manned a section for the investigation of war crimes and tracing of
2 missing persons, my job in the working group was terminated and was taken
3 over by an expert team within the section I mentioned. It is composed of
4 police officers and experts.
5 Q. But is it true that in 1999, as you say, when the on-site
6 investigation was conducted, in addition to police officers, there were
7 also representatives of judicial bodies, deputy public prosecutor, and so
9 A. That's correct.
10 Q. Is it true that both the judges and the public prosecutor
11 officials said at the time that it was not in their jurisdiction, it was
12 in the jurisdiction of Negotin and Kladovo public prosecutors' offices?
13 A. That's correct.
14 Q. You say also that General Djordjevic was informed of that by the
15 chief of SUP. He was told that post-mortems or burials could not take
16 place on the territory of Kladovo. Is that report correct?
17 A. That's how we came by that knowledge, and that is written in the
19 Q. Is it true that Djordjevic then ordered to secure the place and
20 extract the refrigerator lorry?
21 A. In the words of the then chief of police, that's how it was.
22 Q. Is it true that Djordjevic then also ordered the extraction of
23 bodies and preparations for transport where post-mortems and burials would
24 have to take place?
25 A. That's what the chief of SUP at the time said.
1 Q. In your communique, you mention it was over 50 bodies. It was
2 assumed that they were from Kosovo and Metohija. My question now is:
3 From the Official Note made by your working group concerning the interview
4 with the diver who said that there were about 30 bodies in the
5 refrigerator lorry, how come you said it was over 50 when the man who
6 opened the truck said it was 30?
7 A. That's what he said in his statement during the interview. It was
8 his rough estimate. We later found out, however, that there were many
9 more bodies. And the figure of 50 was voiced and generally accepted by
10 many, including Mr. Bosko Radojkovic at that time, until the moment he was
11 able to make a final body count.
12 Q. Why doesn't your press release contain any information which
13 precedes from your interview with the chief of SUP, as you say on page 2,
14 of your interview with him, that is, that General Djordjevic said that
15 post-mortems should be conducted of the bodies?
16 A. That's not what it says in our Official Notes, as far as I
17 remember. It says the order was to extract or pull out the refrigerator
18 lorry, to remove the bodies, and that transport would be organised, and
19 that burial and post-mortems would be conducted in Belgrade, or to be more
20 precise, in a different location.
21 Q. All right. You have, then, a variety of statements. Zivadin
22 Djordjevic says that the lettering on the truck said "Export/import."
23 Other witnesses do not remember any lettering at all.
24 Sperlic Vukasin, who says about it on page 2, says the lettering
25 said "Pec" or "Prizren."
1 How did the working group opt for one version in favour of another
2 when there are many of them?
3 A. In the statement of Mr. Radojkovic, a technician of the internal
4 affairs office of Kladovo, you can see exactly what he said. Mr.
5 Radojkovic made available to us during the interview in which I personally
6 participated ten shots from the negative of the film which was used to
7 film the refrigerator truck. All of them were published. And these
8 photographs, as far as I know, have been filed with the Court, with the
9 Tribunal, as evidence. And all these photographs, together with other
10 documents, were submitted by us to the competent public prosecutor's
11 office in Belgrade.
12 From what you can see on those photographs, the lettering is
13 distinctly visible, "Exporting Slaughterhouse, Prizren," some fax and
14 telephone numbers. Checks have been run in this regard.
15 Q. Mr. Karleusa, tell me now, you have just a moment ago expressed a
16 number of compliments addressed to this crime investigations technician
17 who is a highly qualified professional, a hard-working person, et cetera,
18 things that I do not intend to dispute at all.
19 Since I have received this photographs annexed to your statement,
20 ten of them to be precise, and one after the other they show the trailer
21 protruding from the water, the truck being pulled out. Photograph 4 shows
22 chains and padlocks on the door of the trailer. On photograph 5 you see
23 the refrigerator lorry from the profile. Photograph 6, a close-up of the
24 cab --
25 JUDGE MAY: I'm going to interrupt you for a moment. It may be
1 better to put these photographs to Mr. Radojkovic when he comes. He
2 refers to them. It may be more sensible to put them to him, whatever the
3 point is.
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] My question to Mr. Karleusa, who led
5 the investigation as head of the working group, is as follows:
6 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. How come that an experienced crime investigation technician who
8 made these photographs, put them in a sealed envelope and submitted it to
9 the police concerning the refrigerator lorry containing bodies has not a
10 single photograph among them which shows a body? All we see is a
11 refrigerator lorry. But the point is in the bodies, not the lorry.
12 Is it possible that the procedure for gathering evidence about
13 something that possibly happened there could be documented by photographs
14 of a cab, a trailer, tyres, et cetera, without a single body of a corpse?
15 How do you explain that?
16 A. That was precisely my question to Mr. Radojkovic when I talked to
17 him. He explained that he had started his on-site investigation applying
18 regular procedure. He made the photographs he made, and then he was
19 suddenly ordered to stop doing what he was doing, that there would be no
20 on-site investigation, and that's where it was all terminated. I think
21 Mr. Radojkovic's is in better place to explain this in detail.
22 Q. Did you establish when the people who were exhumed had been
23 killed, and do you know, according to the first forensic estimates, that
24 certain bodies date back to a long time ago, even before the war?
25 A. We - that is the working group - have not established that. That
1 may have been established, as far as I know, by members of the expert
3 From what I know from speaking to them at the time, the bodies do
4 not date back to a long time ago. They date back to a recent time. There
5 is no great difference between their times of death.
6 Q. All right, Mr. Karleusa. In addition to a great number of
7 discrepancies and clarities, ambiguities, you took only a few days,
8 allegedly, to establish the relevant facts and hold a press conference,
9 and created an impression that the bodies concerned were from Kosovo. So
10 I'm asking you now, was it a politically motivated campaign which should
11 have served as a preparation, as paving the way for my illegal extradition
12 to The Hague?
13 A. We gave a press release when we gave it, and neither I nor anyone
14 else from my working group was motivated by political agendas that you
16 Q. Tell me, please, since you yesterday talked about the composition
17 of the working group and from that composition, without naming any names,
18 we can see that there were two lieutenant colonels and one major in that
19 working group; is that correct?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Is it correct? I didn't hear you.
22 A. It is.
23 Q. So two lieutenant colonels and one major. Does it seem logical to
24 you, that you as a captain, the lowest ranking member of that working
25 group, be the leader of that group, superior to the lieutenant colonels
1 and the major?
2 A. I was leader of that working group not because I was captain by
3 rank but because I was deputy head of the criminal investigations police
4 force at the time, and I don't see anything irregular or illogical about
5 the fact that I was the leader of the working group.
6 Q. Does it have to do anything with the fact that professionally and
7 otherwise, in business terms, you were related to the then Minister Dusan
8 Mihajlovic, bypassing regular official links?
9 A. That is not correct.
10 Q. All right. Tell me then, Mr. Karleusa, is it true that the
11 enterprise whose co-owner is your wife is engaged in supplying private
12 companies owned by Dusan Mihajlovic, your minister? Supplying security
14 A. That's not correct.
15 Q. What is not true, that your wife does not co-own this enterprise,
16 this company --
17 JUDGE MAY: That's enough. It has nothing to do with this trial.
18 You've heard what this witness has said.
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Please. Here is an exhibit. The
20 registration with the business relations court in Belgrade of an
21 enterprise which names among its activities physical and technical
22 security services. Fito Centar is his name. Svetlana, father's name Jan,
23 Karleusa. That's your wife, isn't she?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Address Pariske Komune 61. Here we read: "Unlimited
12 Blank pages inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts. Pages 8450 to 8458.
1 authorisations," and so on and so forth. Svetlana Karleusa, acting
2 director without limitation of authority, and so on.
3 JUDGE MAY: The witness has answered. He said it has nothing to
4 do with his evidence or the fact that he was made the leader of the group.
5 Now, that's his answer. The fact that his wife may have had a
6 relationship with somebody else is irrelevant.
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. May, it is very relevant what
8 kind of relationship he has with the current member of the government and
9 his own minister, apart from the fact that he is employed with the MUP,
10 and all these parallel links are very relevant because it is precisely
11 that government which is extremely involved in what I call
12 self-humiliation and self-degradation.
13 JUDGE MAY: You know that political speeches are not allowed here.
14 Just one moment.
15 [Trial Chamber confers]
16 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Karleusa, what is suggested is this, and perhaps
17 we could deal with it in various forms: First of all, does your wife have
18 this company? Is she a director of this company?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] She is co-owner and director of that
21 JUDGE MAY: And the Minister of the Interior, what is his
22 involvement with it? So we can understand the position.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That company that is managed by my
24 wife does not provide security for any companies or premises that have
25 anything to do with Mr. Dusan Mihajlovic.
1 JUDGE MAY: Is there any business relationship between them at
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] As far as I know, no. No.
4 JUDGE MAY: It may be suggested that your evidence in this case is
5 affected in some way by some sort of relationship, business relationship
6 of some sort. Is there any truth in that?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. There is no truth in that.
8 JUDGE MAY: Yes, Mr. Milosevic. You can ask two more questions
9 and then your time is up.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] All right, Mr. May. That is
11 customary practice.
12 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. Could you now answer me a question that has to do with the end of
14 your statement. I'm going to read the last paragraph to you: "I have
15 been advised that my statement may be sought by other law enforcement
16 agencies and/or judicial authorities for the purpose of prosecution."
17 Full stop. And then another sentence: "I hereby do not," underlined,
18 "do not agree to the release of any part of my statement to such
19 authorities at the discretion of the International Criminal Tribunal for
20 the Former Yugoslavia." And you speak of their discretion.
21 Why do you not give this agreement, Mr. Karleusa? Is it because
22 the sole purpose of this is for testifying in this trial, this illegal
23 trial against me, or is there some other reason for that?
24 A. At the moment when I gave this statement, I used my own words, and
25 they are, for the most part, contained in that statement.
1 At the end of that statement, as far as I can see, it says that I
2 am not giving the kind of agreement that you have just referred to, as it
3 has been put here. However, I did not understand that or have I ever
4 heard of any such situation existing.
5 This did not pertain to Yugoslav judicial authorities, because
6 Yugoslav judicial authorities, starting from the court of law and the
7 prosecutor's office, can obtain this at any point in time, because my
8 statement is in the hands of the National Committee of the Federal
9 Republic of Yugoslavia for Cooperation with the Hague Tribunal, then also
10 the team that works at the level of the Ministry of the Interior. And I
11 thought at that time that that was supposed to mean that it is not
12 supposed to be made public. I did not know how all of this would evolve,
13 but it is true that that's what I said so let me explain now what I meant
14 by it. That's the way it is.
15 Q. All right. Tell me, Mr. Karleusa, in view of such an alleged
16 operation of removing corpses that is being ascribed to the very top
17 echelons of the state, does it seem to you that such a decision can be
18 made by any sensible person?
19 JUDGE MAY: Now, that's a comment.
20 Mr. Karleusa, you needn't deal with that.
21 That's something, Mr. Milosevic, that we will have to consider.
22 You can make that point to us in due course.
23 Now, Mr. Kay.
24 MR. KAY: Thank you, Your Honours. Dealing with paragraph 8 of
25 the summary, last sentence in paragraph 8.
1 Questioned by Mr. Kay:
2 Q. Mr. Karleusa, you gave evidence today that you saw a statement by
3 Rade Markovic in which information was contained that Mr. Milosevic had
4 ordered the removal of crimes from the Kosovo area. Do you remember that?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. I'm looking at a statement made by you this year, which was an
7 interview on the 27th of May, 2002, and the 3rd of June, 2002, and in that
8 statement you recite the same fact about Mr. Milosevic's order, but you
9 say in the statement: "I am not certain of the source of this
10 information, although I was advised of this at a MUP meeting. It was my
11 understanding that the information most likely came from one of the
12 participants of the Milosevic meeting."
13 Can you explain the contradiction between your statement that I've
14 just read out and the evidence you gave today?
15 A. At the moment when I gave my statement to Mr. John Zdrilic,
16 investigator, I did not wish to state the source, knowing that the
17 document bore the marking "strictly confidential." At that moment, I
18 thought I was not allowed to disclose the source. Later, I saw that I
19 could state that and that that is not contestable, so I did that here.
20 MR. KAY: No further questions.
21 Re-examined by Mr. Shin:
22 Q. Mr. Karleusa, do you recall approximately when the accused arrived
23 at The Hague Tribunal?
24 A. On St. Vitus's Day.
25 Q. And what year was that?
1 A. 2001.
2 Q. Did the investigations that were carried out regarding the
3 refrigerator truck by the working group, did they continue after that
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Are they continuing currently, as far as you know?
7 A. Yes, they are continuing upon instructions of the prosecutor's
8 office in charge.
9 Q. Who or what organ is carrying out those investigations apart from
10 the prosecutor's office which you've just mentioned?
11 A. According to the request of the prosecutor in charge, regardless
12 of whether it is a case of Belgrade, Negotin, or Uzice, the collection of
13 information that is required is being carried out by a department for
14 combatting organised crime, and it is within the ministry, as I've already
15 mentioned. It is called the Department for the Investigation of War
16 Crimes and Searching for Missing Persons.
17 Q. Are you still in -- are you still in charge of these
18 investigations? Are you personally still in charge?
19 A. I am not in charge personally, but since I am deputy head of the
20 administration within which this department is, I am indirectly involved.
21 But I am not directly engaged in carrying out any investigation nor am I
22 regularly informed about this.
23 Q. Is the working group still in existence?
24 A. The working group no longer exists in that form and with that
25 membership as was the case then. All of the tasks carried out by that
1 working group have now been incorporated into the department I've just
2 referred to.
3 Q. You had mentioned in your direct testimony that exhumations are
4 continuing this summer, even now, at least with respect to one site in
5 Batajnica. Is that true?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Do you know -- are you aware of other exhumations that will be
8 carried out in the future? Just if you know. I'm sorry, I -- just to
9 explain, exhumations in connection with the three sites you mentioned;
10 Batajnica, Petrovo Selo, and Perucac Lake.
11 A. As far as I know and as far as the working group knew, it is
12 possible that other exhumations will take place in the Batajnica locality.
13 That is what we stated. And the exhumations will probably go on until
14 this locality and this terrain are fully searched.
15 Q. Thank you. Mr. Karleusa, with regards to the March 1999 meeting,
16 I'd like to show you a document.
17 MR. SHIN: Usher, if you could, please.
18 Q. Please look at the document carefully, and I will ask you some
19 questions after that.
20 MR. SHIN: Your Honours, would it be possible to have this
21 document marked for identification? The Prosecution intends to put this
22 document in as evidence through a later witness and this is a document
23 that is in fact the subject of disclosure today.
24 JUDGE MAY: What is the document first? Tell us what it is.
25 MR. SHIN: The document is a statement that Radomir Markovic
1 provided to -- to the police in Serbia.
2 JUDGE MAY: Perhaps if the witness can identify it first.
3 MR. SHIN: If I could just ask him some questions then.
4 JUDGE MAY: Yes.
5 MR. SHIN:
6 Q. Mr. Karleusa, do you recall having seen that document before?
7 A. No. I have not seen this document in this form before. What I
8 did see is a similar statement but in different form at the meeting that I
9 referred to.
10 Q. Mr. Karleusa, what is the date of this document that you see
11 before you?
12 A. The date is the 2nd of June, 2001 or 2002. I can't see exactly.
13 2002. 2001. It says in the text the 2nd of June, 2001, whereas what is
14 handwritten is a bit illegible.
15 Q. Mr. Karleusa, could you explain very briefly what this document
17 MR. KAY: Your Honours, I must rise here. It's not his document,
18 he doesn't recognise the document, and I'm not sure what the purpose of
19 this exercise is.
20 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Shin, I don't think you can really take this any
21 further. You can, of course, deal with it with another witness, if you
23 MR. SHIN: What I would seek to ask the witness is whether from
24 what he has seen here, whether it's consistent with the document that he
25 has testified that he saw prior to his communique in May of -- I believe
1 that was 2001.
2 JUDGE MAY: But he said it's similar. Perhaps you could ask this:
3 Were the contents of the document similar?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. Yes. The contents of this
5 document are, for the most part, the same or similar to the document that
6 I had seen and on the basis of which we gave our statement and on the
7 basis of which our knowledge was obtained. However, the form was
8 different. I think that that particular record was different. It had
9 more pages, not devoted to this subject but perhaps to something else. I
10 saw only that which pertained to questions related to my own province of
12 So that's about it. Perhaps there is a bit more here or perhaps I
13 do not remember enough.
14 JUDGE MAY: Yes. I don't think you can take it any further.
15 MR. SHIN: Okay. Thank you. If I could please just have that
16 document marked for identification.
17 JUDGE MAY: No, I don't think you can for the moment.
18 MR. KAY: I was just going to raise a matter concerning the date
19 which the Prosecution should perhaps look at again on the second page and
20 third page of the document for the year; 2002.
21 JUDGE MAY: Yes. Yes. The witness can't identify it. Let the
22 Prosecution have the document back.
23 MR. SHIN: Your Honours, the Office of the Prosecutor has very
24 recently received a report from the Spanish National Institute of
25 Toxicology, within the past week, which will explain the results of some
1 of the DNA samples that Witness William Fulton testified about and will
2 indicate that the bodies found in that Batajnica site do -- to a high
3 degree of probability do relate to persons from Kosovo. I'm not sure how
4 Your Honours would like us to proceed with this. We could, for example,
5 have another investigator come in to put in these documents, if that's --
6 JUDGE MAY: That might be the most efficient way to deal with it
7 and there can be any examination about it. This witness can't clearly
8 deal it because he doesn't know anything.
9 MR. SHIN: Thank you. No further questions.
10 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Karleusa, that concludes your evidence. Thank you
11 for coming to the International Tribunal to give it. You are free to go.
12 [The witness withdrew]
13 MR. RYNEVELD: The Prosecution calls Bosko Radojkovic, Your
15 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Ryneveld, apparently a milestone has been
16 reached with the calling of this witness: 100.
17 MR. RYNEVELD: I'm sorry, Your Honour, I had the earphones on and,
18 unfortunately, it was a different channel.
19 JUDGE ROBINSON: I was just saying that a milestone has been
20 reached in the Prosecution's case: This is the 100th witness.
21 MR. RYNEVELD: Thank you for pointing that out. I'm sorry, I lost
22 track of the numbers. 100. Thank you.
23 If it assists while we're waiting for the witness, Your Honours,
24 during the course of his evidence I do intend to show him a series of some
25 ten photographs in a bundle, and the Court may in fact have already
1 received a copy of those photographs, along with the summary which I
2 prepared, in advance.
3 And does the Registrar have copies available now or do we -- I'm
4 just trying to save time, if I can.
5 [The witness entered court]
6 WITNESS: BOSKO RADOJKOVIC
7 [Witness answered through interpreter]
8 JUDGE MAY: Yes. Let the witness take the declaration.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
10 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
11 JUDGE MAY: If you'd like to take a seat.
12 Examined by Mr. Ryneveld:
13 Q. Mr. Radojkovic, could you state your full name for the Court,
15 A. Bosko Radojkovic.
16 Q. Sir, I understand that you're 46 years of age and you're currently
17 a policeman employed as a senior crime technician in the Serbian Ministry
18 of Interior in Kladovo; is that correct?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And the course of your duties as a crime technician or a crime
21 scene identification officer, do they include such things as taking
22 photographs and fingerprints and attending the scene of what are suspected
23 to be crimes?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. And how long have you been doing that kind of work with the police
1 in Serbia?
2 A. Twenty-five years.
3 Q. During your career as a crime scene examiner, sir, have you had
4 any experience with bodies that have been in water?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. In particular, is there a particular body of water with which you
7 have had considerable experience in terms of finding bodies?
8 A. In view of the place where I work, it mainly had to do with
9 corpses in the river of the Danube, the Danube River.
10 Q. And in the course of your duties, sir, I take it you found various
11 bodies that had been dead ranging from fairly recent to long periods of
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. And in the course of your duties, did you ever have the occasion
15 to tentatively give estimates of how long these bodies had been in water,
16 or had been dead?
17 A. Yes, together with the doctor and the rest of the team which
18 conducted the on-site investigation.
19 Q. All right. That's in generality. I'd like you now, if you would,
20 please, to turn your mind to an incident on the 5th of April of 1999. In
21 the course of your duties, were you called upon to attend the scene in the
22 Danube River near the village of Tekija near Kladovo? Or Tekija.
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Tell us, sir, about how it is that you went to the scene of the
25 Danube River and what is it that you saw when you arrived on the 5th of
1 April, 1999.
2 A. The police officer on duty informed me that in the Danube River
3 near Tekija village, a fisherman noticed an object floating on the water,
4 something that looked like a trailer box on a truck. Since it was not
5 unusual for vehicles to skid off the road and into the Danube, I invited a
6 policeman from the Kladovo police station to accompany me to the site to
8 Q. Do you remember approximately what time of day it was? Was it
9 morning, afternoon, late afternoon? Do you remember?
10 A. I remember that the officer on duty called me on the telephone
11 around 1300 hours. It may have been a little earlier, but after 12.00.
12 Between 12.00 and 1300 hours.
13 Q. And you went out to the scene that afternoon, did you?
14 A. Yes. As soon as I was notified, I went there straight away.
15 Q. And what, if anything, did you see when you got there?
16 A. At a distance of about 20 to 30 metres from the bank, I saw
17 something protruding from the water. It could have been a large box, that
18 is, the trailer part of a truck. A closed container. It was just the tip
19 of the trailer box.
20 Q. When you say it was just the tip, was there a lot of it visible?
21 Could you identify from where you were on the road what it for sure was at
22 that point?
23 A. You could assume that it was a lorry, a trailer with a closed
24 container behind, inside the river, in the water.
25 Q. When you saw that, what happened next? Did you give instructions
1 to anyone to do something or did you investigate in some way to see
2 whether it was in fact a truck or a lorry?
3 A. Yes, I did. The diver put on his equipment and dived into the
4 water, and when he re-surfaced, he told me that it was a lorry, that there
5 was no one in the cab, that the front windshield had fallen out, and that
6 it was probably a Mercedes lorry and its trailer box looked like that of a
7 refrigerated lorry.
8 Q. About what time of day was it now?
9 A. It might have been around 1600 hours, because the diver took
10 rather a long time to get ready to dive to view the vehicle under water,
11 et cetera.
12 Q. What was the water level in the Danube at that particular time?
13 Was it a high river or low or was there run-off or can you tell us?
14 A. I can't recall exactly right now, but I think the level of the
15 water was slightly above average at that time.
16 Q. Did you take any photographs that afternoon or evening of the 5th
17 of April, 1999?
18 A. No. I don't think I took any photographs then because it was
19 getting dark by that time.
20 Q. Since it was getting dark and since you had found there were no
21 occupants in the cab, what did you do next?
22 A. The diver went in again and used a length of rope and a plastic
23 bucket to mark the location so that we could return in the morning and
24 find the place in case the water level rises and the object moves. I
25 think we tied it with this rope; I'm not sure about that part.
1 Q. So after having checked it out and marking the location of the
2 vehicle since it was getting dark, did you leave for the evening?
3 A. Yes. We went to the police station.
4 Q. You told us that you intended to return the next day. Did you do
5 so, and if so, what did you do upon your return?
6 A. That evening, we made arrangements for a crane to be given to us
7 from the hydro power plant of Djerdap to help us pull out the vehicle from
8 the water. And the next morning, the same diver, a colleague of mine from
9 the police force, and myself went there again. The crane was already
10 there together with ten or 15 employees of the hydro power plant.
11 Q. What was accomplished with the crane? Were you able to lift the
12 vehicle out of the water?
13 A. Yes. Slowly, step-by-step, we pulled the lorry out. The diver
14 got into the cab and tried to straighten the wheels by turning the wheel,
15 and the wheels were stuck in the mud on the bottom of the river, and it
16 took a long time and a lot of effort to pull it out.
17 Q. You finally managed to get it to the edge of the river bank, did
18 you, sir?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And at some time after that had been accomplished, did you start
21 to take photographs of this vehicle?
22 A. I did. On the 6th of April, when I returned to the site, I made
23 several photographs of the vehicle in the position in which it was
24 originally found and then another series of photographs showing
25 progressively the process of pulling it out.
1 Q. Yes. And of the photographs that you took that day, I now have --
2 that day and the next, I now have a series of ten photographs that you've
3 supplied to us.
4 MR. RYNEVELD: Might the witness be shown the bundle of
5 photographs at this point, please.
6 My proposal, Your Honours, is to mark these as one exhibit and
7 have them marked. They actually are labeled 1 through 10, and they bear
8 our internal numbers K0226128 right through to the last one, 6137. If
9 that meets with your approval, rather than giving them separate exhibit
11 JUDGE MAY: Yes. We'll have the exhibit number.
12 THE REGISTRAR: Prosecutor's Exhibit number 275.
13 MR. RYNEVELD: Thank you.
14 Q. Now, Witness, you've seen these photographs? These are the
15 photographs that you took on the 6th and 7th of April; is that correct?
16 A. That's correct.
17 Q. All right. Sir, looking at the first photograph, numbered 1, it's
18 now on the ELMO, you see it there? Can you point out to us -- there's not
19 too much to point out.
20 Is this the first photograph that you took after of the vehicle
21 had been dragged, by the crane, out of the water?
22 A. I think it is the first one.
23 Q. All right. And the second photograph. Is that a close-up of the
24 same truck?
25 A. Yes. From a shorter distance.
1 Q. And just so that we're clear, sir, when you attended the evening
2 before, the 5th of April, can you perhaps indicate with your pointer how
3 much of this vehicle was visible to you when you attended the day before,
4 before the truck was pulled out of the water level? Could you perhaps
5 just show us with the pointer?
6 A. Yes, I can. You see this dark strip here, the right upper corner
7 of the side of the lorry. This was made by the dirt in the water.
8 Q. So if we're looking at the lorry box, as it were, the triangle
9 that is left by that black mark, only that top little triangle was visible
10 to you? The rest of the vehicle was submerged?
11 A. Correct.
12 Q. I see. Turning to the third photograph, sir, is that a close-up
13 of the vehicle once it's been pulled even further out of the water?
14 A. Yes. The rear wheels are already on the bank.
15 Q. Now, I'd like to spend just a little bit of time with respect to
16 this photograph.
17 When you looked at this truck, what, if anything, did you note
18 about the back of the -- the door area of the vehicle?
19 A. I noticed that the right half of the door had been broken into,
20 that through this slit, there were two human legs and one arm protruding.
21 Q. Now, it's difficult to see on the screen, but could you use your
22 pointer -- first of all, are any parts of the bodies that you've just
23 described visible in this photograph?
24 A. Yes. You can see one leg. Here it is.
25 Q. You're now pointing just to the left of the little stair hanging
1 down from the right corner of the box of the truck; is that correct?
2 There is what appears to be a foot immediately to the left of that. Could
3 you put your pointer right on the object that you say is a leg.
4 A. Yes. That is the object. This, the body part.
5 Q. What did you do with respect to that body part or any other body
7 A. I have to add that the diver had informed me even before the rear
8 of the truck was pulled out that there was a hole in the rear of the truck
9 and that something was protruding, something that looked like a human foot
10 or an arm, and he asked me what to do. He told me it was still in the
11 water. And I said, "Well, there's nothing you can do. Let's pull it out
12 and see."
13 And when the rear of the lorry was pulled out onto the bank of the
14 river, I saw this one foot protruding, and there were another foot and an
15 arm less visible right there. I pushed them back inside the lorry. I
16 fastened the interior using some planks I had handy and some nuts and
18 Q. So you pushed the body parts back inside and then attempted to
19 cover up the hole, did you?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Now, once you had done that, sir, what time of day is it now on
22 the 6th of April? Has some time passed?
23 A. I think it was already 12 or 1300 hours by that time, maybe even
25 Q. Did you attend the scene only with a diver or did other police
1 officers or other officials also come to the scene of this, where you
2 found the truck?
3 A. I had a colleague with me also from the crime investigations
4 department, and there were two other policemen who controlled traffic on
5 the road, and there were ten employees from the hydroelectrical power
6 plant who operated the crane, the other equipment.
7 I must say that when the lorry was pulled out, just before it was
8 pulled out onto the bank, we informed the investigating judge, the coroner
9 of the medical centre in Kladovo, and the office of the public prosecutor
10 to come to the scene and to witness the final stages of extraction of this
11 refrigerated lorry.
12 Q. So you called for them once you realised that this vehicle
13 actually contained bodies; is that correct?
14 A. Correct.
15 Q. Did you wait for their arrival or did you do something in the
16 meantime? After putting the body parts back in and covering the hole, did
17 you wait for their arrival or did you do something further?
18 A. No. I don't think we did anything else. We were waiting for the
19 investigating judge and the prosecutor.
20 Q. Were they far away, and did it take them long to arrive?
21 A. No. We didn't wait long. I think they actually arrived a short
22 time before the lorry was pulled out finally onto the bank, because the
23 extraction was extremely difficult and slow.
24 Q. All right. Sir, I'd like you to turn to the next photograph, if
25 you would, please. There appears to be a photograph of that same truck
1 before you covered the hole but it seems to have a chain on it. Was it in
2 that condition when you saw it?
3 A. Yes. Along the centre of the door, somewhere in the middle, they
4 were secured with a padlock and a chain.
5 Q. What, if anything, did you do in regards to that chain and why?
6 A. When the investigating judge and the public prosecutor arrived, I
7 tried to cut this chain but I failed, so I had to break through to break
8 the padlock in order to open the door.
9 Q. I take it you accomplished that objective, and were you able then
10 to open the doors to this vehicle?
11 A. Yes. I opened the door.
12 Q. Tell us what you saw when you opened the doors.
13 A. I saw a heap of corpses.
14 Q. When you saw that, what did you do, if anything?
15 A. When I saw that, I shut the door immediately, and I informed the
16 investigating judge, who was close by, about the contents of the lorry.
17 Q. And did you receive any instructions or any indication as to his
18 interest or lack of it?
19 A. The judge asked me how many bodies there were inside. I answered
20 there were a lot. And then the judge said it was not within the purview
21 of the court in Kladovo. A case like that was not within their
22 jurisdiction and that we should inform the district court in Negotin. I
23 offered to open the door for him to see what's inside, but he declined,
24 and he said there was no need for that.
25 Q. So what did you do next?
1 A. He told the policemen to seal off the site, and I went to the
2 police station in Kladovo together with my colleagues from the police.
3 Q. Before you shut the doors again, did you show any of your
4 colleagues what was inside this box?
5 A. Yes. One or two of my colleagues saw the inside when I opened the
6 door, and perhaps some others saw it from a distance.
7 Q. In any event, I understand you then shut the doors again. You'd
8 covered the hole, as you indicated. Did you secure -- did you secure the
10 A. Yes. The employees of the hydro power plant used a cable to tie
11 the chassis of the lorry to a large tree on the bank of the river.
12 Q. I'm just going to go very quickly and lead you through this --
13 JUDGE MAY: We'll adjourn now. It's time for the break.
14 Mr. Radojkovic, we're going to adjourn now for 20 minutes. Could
15 you remember in this and any other breaks there are in your evidence not
16 to speak to anybody until it's over about it, and that does include the
17 members of the Prosecution team. Could you be back, please, in 20
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour.
20 JUDGE MAY: We'll adjourn.
21 --- Recess taken at 12.17 p.m.
22 --- On resuming at 12.42 p.m.
23 MR. RYNEVELD:
24 Q. Now, Witness, just before the break you had just told us that
25 after calling the local officials down to have a look and they declined to
1 do so, you showed your colleagues what was in the truck and then you
2 closed the doors and then you -- I understand you eventually went to the
3 police station. Just before you did that, did you take some more
4 photographs of the doors of this truck? And if so, would you please look
5 at photographs number 5 and 6. Would you look over there.
6 A. Yes, I made a few more photographs. This was while the truck was
7 being dragged out.
8 Q. Yes. And on the passenger's side, if I can call it that, of this
9 door, we see some lettering. And if you will turn to photograph number 6,
10 we see it a little closer. Was that the condition that the door was in on
11 the 6th of April, as it was being taken out of the Danube River?
12 A. Yes, in this state. The front wheels were still in the water.
13 Q. And what is it that it says on the door? We can read it, but
14 perhaps you could read it for us.
15 A. On the door, it says the following: "PIK Progres Export
16 Slaughterhouse. Telephone number, telefax number, Prizren."
17 Q. And had you noticed any licence plates on either the front or the
18 back of this vehicle?
19 A. No, there weren't any licence plates.
20 Q. Anyway, sir, after you secured the scene, do I understand that
21 that particular day, the 6th of April 1999, you returned to the police
23 A. Yes, in the evening, in the afternoon.
24 Q. And when you got there, sir, did you advise the people in charge
25 of the police station what you had seen and what you had done?
1 A. Yes, I did inform the head of the local police there, the chief of
2 the crime prevention service in the police station in Kladovo. The two of
3 them, at any rate. I don't know if any of their associates were present
4 as well.
5 Q. Do you recall their names?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Could you tell us.
8 A. The head of the SUP in Kladovo was Vukasin Sperlic. The head of
9 the group for combatting crime was Stevanovic, and Nena Popovic, Momcilo
10 Sujranovic, my colleagues.
11 Q. Now, after giving your report, did you receive any instructions
12 with respect to what further steps, if any, you ought to take?
13 A. Yes. According to customary procedure, we sent a letter to the
14 Secretariat of the Interior, that is to say the regional SUP in Bor. We
15 sent a written report as to what we had found in the Danube and what was
16 in the truck. In view of the fact that all of this during the NATO
17 bombing of Yugoslavia, the entire event was taking place right by the
18 border with Romania. And Romania had then allowed the use of their own
19 air space for NATO aircraft very close to the site where this occurred,
20 it's perhaps only 1.000 metres away, that is a very short distance in
21 terms of waterways. On the Romanian side, there were Romanian patrol
22 boats and bigger ships.
23 Bearing in mind the fact that they had the technical devices to
24 see this truck and perhaps even see the lettering on the door, and also
25 bearing in mind the fact that this was close to the town of Tekija and
1 that this lettering on the truck may be reminiscent of certain events in
2 Kosovo, we agreed during the night that we should cover the lettering on
3 the door so that perhaps due to that lettering we would not have any
4 consequences by way of bombing or something.
5 Q. So were you told or -- to do something or did you make a decision
6 on your own to do something?
7 A. I was told that I should somehow cover this lettering so that it
8 could not be seen from a distance, so that the public could not see it.
9 Q. Who told you to do that?
10 A. Directly, I don't know. It was at local police level. So it was
11 the head or the chief of group. That is how we agreed as to how this
12 should be done.
13 Q. As a consequence, what, if anything, did you do later that
15 A. Yes. Later that evening, I got some car paint, and the colour was
16 similar to that of the truck, and in the evening, I went to the site. It
17 was during the night. So I used this car paint spray to cover the
18 lettering on the driver's door and on the passenger's side door.
19 Q. Although we can only see on photographs 5 and 6 of Exhibit 275 the
20 lettering on the passenger's side door, was there similar writing on the
21 driver's side door?
22 A. Yes, identical.
23 Q. So you went back at night with cans of spray paint and what, if
24 anything, did you do in relation to the writing on the doors of this
1 A. Yes. I sprayed the writing on the door with this spray paint so
2 that it could not be seen.
3 Q. All right. You told us earlier there were no licence plates on
4 the vehicle. Did you do something in relation to licence plates?
5 A. Yes, I did.
6 Q. What was that?
7 A. From the police station in Kladovo, I took some old licence plates
8 with -- Bor licence plates, and then I damaged them a bit to make them
9 less noticeable. And then that same night when I was spraying the doors
10 with the spray paint, I put the licence plates on the back and on the
11 front of the truck.
12 Q. And then you went home?
13 A. Yes. I went home.
14 Q. Did you return the next day and take some more photographs?
15 A. Yes. In the morning, I went to the scene again, again with my
16 colleagues from the Kladovo police, and there was already a big group of
17 workers from the hydroelectric power plant there, and there was also a
18 crane there, bigger than the one that was there before.
19 Q. And what can you tell us about -- well, you took some photographs,
20 and I'd like you to look at photographs number 7 and 8, if you would,
22 First of all number 7, which is now on the ELMO. That's a
23 photograph you took, and that's the same truck as the one you found on the
24 5th and the 6th of April, 1999?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. And now there's no writing visible on the doors; is that it?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. These are black and white photographs. Do you remember what
4 colour the cab of this vehicle was?
5 A. Green.
6 Q. And did you use a dark green or did you use a green matching spray
7 paint to cover the door?
8 A. Yes, but I didn't get the right shade. Not exactly the right
10 Q. All right. But you effectively covered up the writing; correct?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Looking at photograph number 8, did you -- where did you say you
13 put the licence plate? Was it on the front or the back or both? I don't
14 recall. Is there a licence plate showing on the back? I don't see it if
15 -- perhaps you can help us.
16 A. In the front it was tied with a wire, and in the back I attached
17 it with some nuts and bolts. But the licence plate was considerably
18 damaged, so you couldn't really see it from afar. You'd have to go very
19 close in order to see what it said. I had scraped off some of the paint
20 and lettering and I had hit it with a hammer.
21 Q. Did you also cover it with dirt or anything?
22 A. Yes. Yes. Mud from the Danube. I smeared it with that when I
23 put it on the truck.
24 Q. Is the licence plate in fact now visible on the back of this
25 vehicle, and if so, could you point out where it is, because it's not
1 readily discernible to my eye. Could you show it to us, please.
2 A. I think that in the photograph you can't even see it, but it was
3 on the lower left-hand corner. The photograph was not taken with a flash,
4 but at any rate, it was in the lower left-hand corner.
5 Q. Perhaps you could show us in photographs 9 or 10. You also took
6 two more photographs that day?
7 A. I think that this is the licence plate, this white thing here,
8 this white line.
9 Q. I see.
10 A. A bit wider. I think that's it.
11 Q. Okay. And it shows -- these photographs, 9 and 10, also clear
12 show that you've done something to the back to cover it up. Did you
13 attach that -- what appears to be a patch on the back right rear door?
14 A. Yes, I did.
15 Q. All right, sir. Now, you'd met with the local police, and did
16 police attend the scene of this truck on the 7th of April, after you took
17 these photographs and after the crane, the larger crane, pulled it further
18 out of the water?
19 A. I don't really understand the question.
20 Q. All right. That's my fault. I understand that on the 7th, you've
21 just told us about photographs you took. You've told us that a larger
22 crane was there. Did you use this larger crane to pull this vehicle right
23 out of the water?
24 A. No.
25 Q. Did the crane -- the larger crane that was there on the 7th, was
1 it used at all? Do you understand my question or am I phrasing this
3 A. On the scene itself, we first had a smaller one. It was big, but
4 it was not big enough to pull something this big out, or this heavy out.
5 So then the next day, an even bigger crane was brought.
6 Q. Right. And what, if anything, was done with that bigger crane?
7 A. With the larger crane, we were trying to extract the truck from
8 the water once again. In order to make this clear, the hydroelectric
9 power plant is very close, ten kilometres away. And then the water level
10 goes up and down a metre or two. So then during the day, we pull out the
11 back part and then the water goes up and then part of the truck is
12 submerged again. So that's why we needed this bigger crane, to pull it
13 out completely to a place that was a certain distance away from the water
14 edge itself.
15 Q. My question, sir, was at some time during that day, by use of this
16 new, second, larger crane, did you accomplish that objective? In other
17 words, did you get the truck out of the water?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Thank you. Now, did something happen that evening? Did the
20 district police arrive?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Why?
23 A. They were informed about what had happened in Kladovo and what was
24 found on the Danube. And then the head of the district police, with his
25 associates, came to Kladovo. When they found out about this, we were
1 ordered to stop all activities related to the refrigerator truck.
2 Q. All right. Then what?
3 A. The chief of regional police, of district police, had a meeting in
4 Kladovo with the local police, with his associates, and then we were
5 informed that I and a few of my colleagues should be ready in the evening,
6 that we should come to the police station in the evening so that we would
7 do something in relation to the truck.
8 Q. Did you wait until evening?
9 A. Yes. That meeting was held around 2000 hours.
10 Q. And what was discussed and decided, if anything, at that meeting?
11 A. I was not present at the meeting. Perhaps I was in that office
12 for about five minutes around the middle of the meeting, but I was told to
13 get some of my colleagues who were free so that we would go during the
14 night to get the corpses out of the refrigerator truck.
15 Q. Who told you to do that?
16 A. The head of the district police and this entire team that was
17 there. The head of the district police was, of course, the ranking member
19 Q. Do you know his name?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Could you tell us.
22 A. Caslav Golubovic. He's a colonel.
23 Q. All right. And did you in fact follow those instructions and go
24 back to the scene and remove the, as you call them, corpses from the
1 A. Yes. Not only I, there were about 15 of us.
2 Q. Yes. And this is after 8.00 at night. Was it light or dark?
3 A. No. It was dark. It was around 2300 hours in the evening.
4 Q. Is there a reason why you waited until it was dark in order to
5 accomplish that task?
6 A. Well, one of the reasons was precisely because this was the time
7 when Yugoslavia was bombed. And secondly, we had to carry out some
8 preparations after this meeting in order to be able to go to the scene.
9 Q. All right. And you went back to the truck. I take it you opened
10 the doors again and at that point you started removing bodies; is that
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Tell us what you saw. Tell us what you did.
14 A. We gave assignments to different people as to what each and every
15 person should do. I was in the refrigerator truck together with a
16 colleague. We were extracting the corpses from the truck. One colleague
17 was right next to the refrigerator truck, behind us, and he was taking the
18 corpses from us and wrapping them. Others were carrying them, somebody
19 was lighting the ground, and others were putting the corpses onto a truck.
20 So that is how we organised the operation.
21 Q. You personally were inside the truck where the bodies were; is
22 that correct? You saw them in their state in the back of the truck?
23 A. Yes. I and another colleague and the one who was behind the
24 refrigerator truck.
25 Q. How many bodies did you remove that night?
1 A. Thirty.
2 Q. Where were they taken and how? You've described how you passed
3 them from person to person, wrapped them. Where were they taken once they
4 were out of the back of your truck -- or the truck you found?
5 A. I don't know where they were driven, but the truck on which the
6 corpses were loaded went towards Milanovac, which is upstream in relation
7 to the Danube River.
8 Q. From your answer, am I correct in assuming that they were taken
9 off the lorry found in the river and placed on a different truck?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. And you've just told us that that truck left in the direction that
12 you described; is that correct?
13 A. Correct.
14 Q. Can you tell us, sir, anything about those 30 bodies that you
15 personally handled in terms of what they looked like, how they were
16 dressed, and approximate ages or sex?
17 A. There were both male and female bodies. As for the age pattern, I
18 know for sure that there were two children, a boy about five or six years
19 old and a little girl about eight or nine years old. There weren't any
20 more children.
21 As for the other corpses, their ages ranged from about 20 until
22 about 70, perhaps even a bit more than that. I came to that conclusion on
23 the basis of their external appearance.
24 Q. Were they dressed, and if so, in what type of clothing?
25 A. Yes. For the most part, they were dressed. The men wore regular
1 type of clothes; trousers, jeans, nothing special. As for the female
2 corpses, most of them had pantaloons.
3 Q. When you say "pantaloons," was there anything special about that
5 A. Well, nothing special, but it is characteristic of certain groups
6 of women.
7 Q. What kinds of groups of women did you have in mind when you noted
8 that clothing?
9 A. Pantaloons are not compulsory clothing for any particular group of
10 any ethnicity, but it is certain groups, certain ethnicities that wear
11 such clothing.
12 Q. My question is: Are you able to tell us, in your mind, what types
13 of ethnicities are more common to wear that type of clothing?
14 A. As far as I know, such clothing is worn by Romany women, Turkish
15 women, Albanian women, Muslim women. I'm not sure about other groups,
16 whether they wear that, because we have quite a few different ethnic
17 groups so I'm not sure whether there are others that wear them as well.
18 Q. Sir, you've told us that there were two children and the rest were
19 adults, and you've given us the range in age that you estimated. Could
20 you tell what state these bodies were in? In other words, from your
21 experience of some 25 or more years, could you tell, in your opinion, the
22 approximate -- how long these bodies had been dead?
23 A. In my estimate - but I would like to say that I'm not a forensic
24 expert but I'm speaking on the basis of my own experience - I can say that
25 these corpses were not older than two or three days in relation to the day
1 when they were found. That is to say that death had occurred two or three
2 days before they were found in the Danube.
3 I'm bearing in mind the fact that the water was cold, that the
4 weather was rather cold, and that considerably effects changes on dead
6 Q. Just one more question about how they were dressed. Did any of
7 them, of the bodies that you personally handled, appear to be wearing a
8 uniform of any type at all?
9 A. No.
10 Q. Did you look at the bodies themselves with respect to any signs as
11 to perhaps how they might have met their death? In other words, were
12 there any wounds or anything visible to you?
13 A. Yes. As for these first 30 bodies, I had a look at most of them
14 out of curiosity or due to my profession. Those were the corpses where I
15 had time to see the corpses because the people who were carrying the
16 corpses were running a bit late so I helped my colleague who was wrapping
17 up the corpses in a sheet or in a blanket or whatever, so I managed to see
19 Q. And what did you see about these bodies?
20 A. Injuries on the bodies. Most of them were readily visible. They
21 were mostly inflicted by something mechanical, a blunt object, but it also
22 had to be heavy. Or a mechanical instrument but with a sharp edge. That
23 would also have had to be heavy as well.
24 Q. Did you note any gunshot wounds or bullet wounds on any of the
25 bodies that you handled that night, the 30 bodies?
1 A. I can say something only about one of the bodies, a male body aged
2 between 17 and 20. He was wearing jeans, and he didn't have any clothing
3 on the upper part of the body, and he had an exit -- an entry/exit wound
4 in the chest.
5 Q. Did you notice anything about his hands?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. What was that?
8 A. His hands were bound with wire in the back.
9 Q. So his hands were tied behind his back with wire; is that what
10 you're saying?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Now, sir, you've told us that it's night, it's after 11.00 or
13 thereabouts. What kind of lighting was available to you in order to make
14 the observations you've just told us about?
15 A. In the refrigerator truck, we had one torchlight, and the
16 colleague next to us, next to the refrigerator truck, the one who was
17 wrapping up the bodies, he also had a torchlight, but they were not very
18 strong because we didn't want to be seen from Romania. So we used this
19 only for a short while. And I think that there was plenty of moonlight
21 Q. All right. Now, sir, did you give a detailed account of your
22 observations, in more detail than you've told us today, to the working
23 group of the MUP in 2001?
24 A. I did. I provided a more detailed report to the working group.
25 Basically it is the same as what I have said now. Perhaps it contained a
1 little more detail.
2 MR. RYNEVELD: Perhaps, Your Honours, if that report hasn't
3 already been marked as an exhibit -- I believe it has been marked as an
4 exhibit and it's found in -- I'll ask some more questions while I get the
5 number for your reference.
6 Q. Now, sir, the -- did you do anything further after you loaded
7 these 30 bodies into the truck?
8 A. No.
9 Q. Why did you stop?
10 A. We did nothing more that night.
11 Q. Were there more bodies still in the truck found in the Danube?
12 A. Yes, there were, but around 3.00 a.m. we stopped for the time
13 being because the workers were tired. Nobody had any strength any more.
14 Everybody was exhausted. It was a difficult job to carry these bodies
15 uphill. The terrain was steep, and we simply couldn't go on any more for
16 the night.
17 Q. Did you return the next day?
18 A. We did. We returned immediately the next morning.
19 Q. I'm just going to speed things up a little bit. I understand,
20 sir, that with the crane you --
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. You loaded the -- you actually managed to pull this truck and put
23 it onto a flatbed truck; is that correct?
24 A. Correct, a flatbed truck.
25 Q. Now, did you do anything during the course of the day, while it
1 was light, with respect to the remaining bodies?
2 A. No. Nothing was done with the corpses. They were only removed
3 or, rather, the entire refrigerator lorry was pulled out, uphill out of
4 the river onto a site where the flatbed truck was standing ready.
5 Q. And did you do something further with the balance of the bodies in
6 the truck later that day?
7 A. Yes. That night when dark fell, we transferred all the remaining
8 bodies from the refrigerator lorry to the flatbed truck.
9 Q. Why did you wait until dark?
10 A. Because the lorry and the flatbed truck were near a very busy road
11 from Belgrade to Kladovo. The traffic was very busy. And the other
12 reason, as I already explained, was the vicinity of the Romanian border
13 and their vessels.
14 Q. By way of summary, is it fair to say that you did not want to be
15 seen doing what you were doing?
16 A. Perhaps.
17 Q. Now, did you empty the lorry, or the truck in the Danube, did you
18 empty the balance of the bodies at that time?
19 A. Yes. We removed all the remaining bodies.
20 Q. How many were there?
21 A. The second night we removed 53 bodies which were entire bodies, if
22 I can put it that way, and we recovered another three corpses or, rather,
23 body parts belonging to three corpses. At least, there were three human
24 heads and whether all of the body parts were there on the truck to make
25 complete three corpses, I don't know. So on the whole, there were 56
2 Q. Is a fair way of summarising that to say there were 56 heads, 53
3 of which had bodies attached to them, intact, and body parts for the
4 remaining three but you don't know if they made complete bodies?
5 A. Precisely.
6 Q. Were you able to tell the Court, again, how they were dressed, if
7 they were dressed, the sex and age?
8 A. Those 53 corpses that had been removed from the refrigerator lorry
9 the second night were also of both genders. The clothing was as I
10 described earlier, but there were no younger people or children among
11 them. In fact, I could say that there was no one below 20. All the
12 bodies belonged to adults.
13 Q. How -- you say all adults. Are you able to give an upper range of
14 the age of people? Were there any elderly among them?
15 A. Yes, there were people who could have been 60 or 70, judging by
16 their faces, by their general appearance. That's the only thing I had to
17 go by.
18 Q. Just a couple more quick questions about the bodies. Again, you
19 told us that there were dressed similarly. Any uniforms on any of these
20 53 bodies or 56 heads?
21 A. No.
22 Q. Did you take any photographs of these bodies either the night of
23 the 6th or the night of the 7th as you were removing them from the truck?
24 A. Could you please repeat that question?
25 Q. You've told us you took bodies out on the night of the 6th and
1 then again on the night of the 7th. Did you take any photographs of any
2 of the bodies that you removed on either night?
3 A. No.
4 Q. Why not?
5 A. When the chief of the district police arrived and that meeting was
6 held at the police station in Kladovo, it was said that no further
7 photographs were to be taken.
8 Q. It was said to whom?
9 A. To me.
10 Q. Under normal circumstances in the course of your duties, would it
11 be a normal thing for you to take photographs?
12 A. Yes, certainly.
13 Q. Now, when you finished loading these bodies, what happened that
14 night? Did you go home or go back to the police station, or what did you
15 do when you finished that job?
16 A. The lorry with the corpses went further up the river again, in the
17 direction of Donji Milanovac, and I went home.
18 Q. What happened, if anything, to the truck that had been found in
19 the Danube that had been loaded onto the flatbed? Did it stay at the
20 scene or did it leave somewhere too?
21 A. When I set out to go home, the truck was still there. But the
22 next morning, when I came back to the police station in Kladovo, I was
23 told that the flatbed truck, escorted by two policemen, was transported to
24 Petrovo Selo, which is near Kladovo.
25 Q. Were you given any instructions by anyone with respect to the
1 refrigerator truck?
2 A. Yes. The next day, the chief of police from Bor, or one of his
3 associates, gave us a ring and said that this truck needs to be destroyed.
4 It was suggested that this should be done by burning it.
5 Q. Yes. And that was the suggestion. Did you receive an instruction
6 to destroy it or what happened?
7 A. When I received the instruction to destroy the lorry, I went to
8 Petrovo Selo accompanied by a colleague, and we poured petrol over the
9 lorry and set it on fire.
10 Q. Where was the lorry?
11 A. It was in Petrovo Selo, which is a village on a mountain near
13 Q. How did you know where it was? How did you know where to go?
14 A. This colleague of mine who accompanied me on this mission to torch
15 the truck, he had accompanied the transfer of the lorry from Kladovo to
16 Petrovo Selo the night before.
17 Q. When you poured petrol on the refrigerator truck, did that destroy
18 it sufficiently? After you set it on fire, of course.
19 A. No. The skeleton of the lorry remained.
20 Q. So what, if anything, did you do next?
21 A. I called up the chief of police in Bor. I told him that things
22 were not good, that it was not going to be done that way, not going to be
23 accomplished that way and that we had to blow it up.
24 Q. Did you do that?
25 A. We did.
1 Q. When and how?
2 A. I think it was the 8th of April when we set the lorry on fire. So
3 it must have been the 9th when we used explosives to destroy it
4 completely. Explosives used in industry.
5 Q. And you brought those explosives with you for the purpose of
6 blowing up the truck; is that correct?
7 A. Yes. It had been brought.
8 Q. Did the explosives do the trick?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Now, that would have happened, then, on the 9th of April, if I've
11 been following the progression correctly, 1999.
12 A. Yes. All these events happened on several days in sequence, over
13 several days. So it must have been Saturday, the 9th of April.
14 Q. Now, sir, a couple of years later, May 1st, 2001, did you become
15 familiar with an article that was published in the "Timok Crime Review" in
16 relation to that vehicle that you had discovered and dealt with?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And to make a long story short, were you then questioned by the
19 working group of the MUP? And you've already told us you've given them a
20 report; is that correct?
21 A. Yes. They conducted an interview with me. I didn't give them any
22 report. They just interviewed me and, on the basis of that interview,
23 they drew up an Official Note.
24 Q. And have you had an opportunity of reading that Official Note?
25 A. I did, but only later.
1 Q. I understand that.
2 MR. RYNEVELD: Your Honours, I promised to give you this exhibit
3 number. You have that as Exhibit 274, that last binder that went through
4 the previous witness, Karleusa, at tab 8.
5 Q. Now, you had -- much later, had an opportunity to read that
6 Official Note. Is the Official Note an accurate rendition of your
7 recollection of what you told the working group as to what you did?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Did you make any changes at all to your -- to your statement about
10 the communique released by the working group about what you had seen? Did
11 you want to make any changes to that?
12 A. As regards the Official Note drawn up by the working group based
13 on their interview with me, I stand by the contents of that Official Note
14 in full. And at any rate, they -- the investigators got hold of this
15 Official Note through the Ministry of the Interior. I only have
16 reservations about the second part.
17 Q. All right. In the document you read, did you note anything at all
18 about a sentence about KLA uniforms being found on any of the bodies?
19 A. No. That is not in the Official Note made on the basis of the
20 interview with me. But an error must have been made later, in one of the
21 subsequent documents, and I told them to correct it.
22 Q. And that was the communique that was released; is that correct?
23 Or do you know what document it is?
24 A. No.
25 Q. In any event, your evidence is that on none of these 83 bodies, or
1 86 bodies, you saw no uniforms at all?
2 A. Correct.
3 Q. Two more questions. The negatives -- these photographs that
4 you've taken, some of which were entered in these proceedings, the ten
5 photographs, you personally developed those photographs, did you?
6 A. Yes. This roll of film which I used to photograph the object, I
7 developed the film and it was part of my case file kept in my office. In
8 2001, I gave this negative to the working group, headed by Captain
9 Karleusa, and he must still have it.
10 Q. My final question, sir: Looking back on what happened in April of
11 1999, how do you feel about the way in which you were instructed to carry
12 out that investigation? Is that a normal way that you as a professional
13 crime scene investigator would conduct an investigation?
14 A. Your Honours, I'm testifying here about what I did, what I did
15 with my own hands, what I saw with my own eyes. As for my feelings, I had
16 none at the time. There was a war going on. That's what had to be done.
17 That was the way it had to be done.
18 Q. Thank you, Witness.
19 JUDGE MAY: We will adjourn now. Cross-examination tomorrow
21 Mr. Radojkovic, would you be back, please, 9.00 tomorrow morning,
22 to conclude your evidence.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I understand, Your Honour. I will.
24 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.38 p.m.,
25 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 24th day of July,
1 2002, at 9.00 a.m.