Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 576

1 Tuesday, 31st August, 1999

2 [Rule 77 Hearing]

3 [Open session]

4 [The appellant entered court]

5 --- Upon commencing at 10.06 a.m.

6 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Mr. Registrar, would you

7 please call the case?

8 THE REGISTRAR: IT-94-1-A-R77, allegations

9 against former counsel.

10 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: The appearances are as

11 before? Mr. Clegg, you're on your feet.

12 MR. CLEGG: I filed a motion --

13 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: We must get the record

14 straight. Are you joining the ranks of counsel at this

15 time?

16 MR. CLEGG: Yes. I represent the interested

17 party in the contempt proceedings.

18 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Mr. Tadic?

19 MR. CLEGG: Mr. Tadic.

20 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: I see. So you would

21 like the record to reflect that fact, that you are part

22 of the legal team representing the interested party

23 Mr. Tadic?

24 MR. CLEGG: Sorry to pause. I ought to know

25 who I represent, but I certainly do represent the

Page 577

1 interested party Mr. Tadic. As the Court is well

2 aware, of course, I've been representing him in the

3 appeal, and I certainly, for today, wish to make a

4 motion to this Chamber on his behalf. So in that

5 limited extent, I represent him.

6 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: The bench approves of

7 your addressing the Court.

8 MR. CLEGG: I'm grateful.

9 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: And you're speaking of a

10 motion.

11 MR. CLEGG: I am. It's a motion that was

12 filed on the 26th of August of this year, and I would

13 ask for the Chamber to go into closed session for me to

14 address the matters raised therein.

15 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Any objections from any

16 party, interested party?

17 MR. ABELL: No, Your Honour.

18 MR. DOMAZET: No, Your Honour.

19 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Then, Mr. Registrar,

20 would you take the necessary steps?

21 [Closed Session]

22 (redacted)

23 (redacted)

24 (redacted)

25 (redacted)

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Page 608

1 Tuesday, 31st August, 1999

2 [Open session]

3 --- Upon commencing at 12.03 p.m.

4 MR. ABELL: Your Honour, I noticed Mr. Vujin

5 and Mr. Domazet don't appear to be in the chamber. I

6 don't know where they've gone.

7 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: I am grateful to you for

8 pointing out that. I had assumed that all parties were

9 in court at this time. Perhaps we might await word

10 from the Registrar, who might have an explanation.

11 THE REGISTRAR: You had been very clear. You

12 said that we were going to resume after 30 minutes of

13 break, at 12.00, so the parties are supposed to be

14 ready to participate in the hearing at the due time.

15 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: We have at last

16 Mr. Vujin and Mr. Domazet, and we are in a position --

17 we have with us Mr. Vujin and Mr. Domazet, and we are

18 now in a position to resume the proceedings proper.

19 The next witness, I believe, is Mr. Brkic.

20 Is that right, Mr. Registrar?

21 THE REGISTRAR: Quite, Mr. President.

22 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Mr. Brkic has been sent

23 for, Mr. Registrar?

24 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honour. The

25 request has been made. He should be here in a minute.

Page 609

1 [The witness entered court]

2 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Yes. Mr. Brkic, I

3 believe, is your name?

4 THE WITNESS: Yes.

5 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Would you read the

6 solemn declaration?

7 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will

8 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the

9 truth.

10 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Please be seated.

11 THE WITNESS: Thank you

12 WITNESS: MILOVAN BRKIC

13 Questioned by the Court:

14 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Mr. Brkic, would you

15 give the date of birth of your good self, as well as

16 the place of birth?

17 A. I was born on 11th November, 1956 in

18 Ljubovia (phoen) in the Republic of Serbia in

19 Yugoslavia.

20 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: And now would you please

21 state your occupation?

22 A. I'm a journalist.

23 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: And where do you now

24 live?

25 A. In Belgrade, the Republic of Serbia.

Page 610

1 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Mr. Brkic, you made

2 certain statements. Have you seen them recently?

3 A. No.

4 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Mr. Registrar, can the

5 statements be made available to the witness?

6 THE REGISTRAR: If you wish me to, I could

7 number the three statements from now on so that they

8 can be more easily referenced.

9 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Please do.

10 THE REGISTRAR: The statement made in a

11 newspaper, together with a photograph, will be

12 number 8, Exhibit 8. Then there is a statement made on

13 the 8th of February, 1999. This will be Exhibit 9.

14 Finally, a statement, the latest date for which is the

15 18th of February, 1999.

16 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: That would be 10?

17 THE REGISTRAR: Yes. Sorry, I forgot that,

18 Your Honour. This will be Exhibit 10.

19 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Mr. Brkic, do have a

20 look at those statements.

21 A. Your Honours, it is true that as a journalist

22 I'm the author of the text that has been shown me. It

23 is true that I myself have signed the statement. It is

24 true that under full moral and legal responsibility I

25 gave the statement that you have shown me and I stand

Page 611

1 behind it.

2 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: You affirm today the

3 accuracy of the contents of those statements?

4 A. Yes.

5 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Have the statements been

6 made available to the interested parties?

7 Mr. Domazet?

8 MR. DOMAZET: No, we haven't. I haven't

9 this.

10 MR. ABELL: Your Honour, may I say I'm very

11 surprised to say that. The statements were admitted

12 into evidence on the -- forgive me -- I believe on the

13 24th of February of this year. That is the scheduling

14 order.

15 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Mr. Domazet, did you see

16 a scheduling order of the 24th of February of this

17 year, attaching copies of those statements?

18 Mr. Registrar, may I suggest you show

19 Mr. Domazet the scheduling order with copies of the

20 attached statements.

21 THE REGISTRAR: Of course, Your Honour.

22 MR. DOMAZET: Yes.

23 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Thank you. Then may we

24 proceed on the basis that those statements are formally

25 admitted into evidence.

Page 612

1 Now, Mr. Brkic, I would like you to turn to

2 Exhibit number 9. That is to say, your statement of

3 8 February 1999.

4 Would I be correct in summarising your

5 statements to mean this: That you are asserting that

6 Mr. Vujin had been manipulating evidence and

7 undermining the presentation of the case for

8 Mr. Tadic?

9 A. Yes.

10 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: And that he was part of

11 a machinery of the state for ensuring that persons

12 connected with the state were not exposed to any risks

13 through the defence of anyone in this Tribunal?

14 A. Yes. Not with the state but with the state

15 leadership.

16 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: State leadership. And I

17 understand you also to be saying that that was also the

18 policy regardless of whether or not the effective

19 defence of an accused person necessitated reference to

20 allegations against officials connected with the

21 state.

22 A. I shall try to answer you in two words. The

23 state police ordered the State Security Service that by

24 a certain group of advocates, amongst them Mr. Vujin,

25 to exert control over the detained individuals which

Page 613

1 this Tribunal have been charged with war crimes. The

2 intention of the state leadership was to exert control

3 over those individuals so that their Defence counsel do

4 not expand responsibility to include higher command

5 structures, police structures, and the state

6 leadership.

7 The text that I published, which has been

8 attached here, already in 1995, I presented this plan

9 of the state leadership. Unfortunately, the events

10 completely confirm the quotations made in my text, and

11 one individual was made to commit suicide to -- in

12 order not to testify against others.

13 I don't know whether I can have three more

14 words, whether the rules allow me to explain this

15 procedure and how this was planned, how it was planned

16 that the Defence counsel at the Tribunal should exert

17 influence on the accused to instruct them how to behave

18 towards the Tribunal.

19 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Now, Mr. Brkic, I

20 appreciate those observations, which lead me to the

21 penultimate paragraph of your statement of 8 February,

22 1999.

23 In that statement you say: "I'm aware of the

24 consequences of bearing false testimony, and I am

25 prepared to confirm before the International Criminal

Page 614

1 Tribunal the truthfulness of the assertions in the

2 above-mentioned text."

3 And likewise in your statement of the

4 18th February, 1999, in paragraph numbered 5, at the

5 end you stated this: "I do not merely believe that

6 Mr. Vujin undermined Mr. Dusan Tadic's defence. I have

7 concrete proof of this which I cannot present in this

8 written answer."

9 Now, as you will appreciate, the Appeals

10 Chamber would be interested in knowing what is the

11 concrete proof that you could provide.

12 A. Your Honours, I made this statement on the

13 8th and 18th of February, the state in which I live and

14 where I come from at the time, after it was thought

15 that it would be at war. The circumstances have

16 completely changed since then, and those of us who live

17 in Serbia, we say "good morning" and we count each

18 other to see whether we are all there.

19 If I were to present to you the names of the

20 people from this State Security Service who gave me a

21 plan of activity, and proof, documents of the

22 activities of the lawyers before the International

23 Tribunal, please believe me, I would write the death

24 sentence for those people. I would have signed their

25 death sentence. So I cannot take this upon myself,

Page 615

1 this responsibility and this courage.

2 I have no personal reasons for accusing

3 either Mr. Vujin or any other lawyers. I do this

4 exclusively by virtue of my conscience and to thwart

5 their activities; that is to say, to sell out their

6 clients and bring them in a situation in which they are

7 not able to defend themselves. I too was accused many

8 times as a journalist, and I know what it means to come

9 before a court and to have to prove yourself.

10 If I were to tell you the names of those

11 people, and as the hearings are public, then please

12 believe me that their lives would be worthless. You

13 will make the decision yourselves about whether I was

14 truthful or not.

15 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: So I understand you to

16 be taking this position: That to make good the

17 concrete proof which you stated you could present, you

18 would have to call the names of individuals and that

19 that would expose them to unnecessary risks.

20 A. Not unnecessary risk, but their lives would

21 be in danger. Your Honours, by an order of the

22 president of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia,

23 Slobodan Milosevic at the time, a state commission was

24 set up which was to have studied the responsibilities

25 of the head of the state security in giving facts to

Page 616

1 me, because I have had many documents, and Slobodan

2 Milosevic published these. I have published many of

3 them, but there was no way in which this could be

4 linked to the responsibility of the head of the State

5 Security Service.

6 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Let me take you to the

7 article which you wrote, Exhibit 8, at page 5, top

8 paragraph, in English. I don't know what it is in the

9 version before you, but it's the paragraph in which you

10 stated that: "Attorney Toma Fila has forever ruined

11 the career and life of actor Zarko Lausevic."

12 Do you see that paragraph?

13 A. I remember, yes, as I am the author of the

14 text.

15 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Now, in that paragraph

16 you are referring to a meeting at which you say

17 Mr. Vujin was present, and you say that at that meeting

18 Mr. Fila said, "Gentlemen, there is no client whom I

19 cannot sell. I am the biggest Judas of all and am

20 proud of it."

21 What is the basis upon which you make that

22 statement?

23 A. Your Honours, before I published the text

24 which you have just read out to me in part, I was

25 invited to the State Security Service. I cannot tell

Page 617

1 you the name of the individual who showed me a

2 programme of activity of that service, and that it

3 followed orders from the President of the Republic of

4 the Yugoslavia, Mr. Slobodan Milosevic.

5 That task and assignment was to select a

6 group of attorneys to come before to the Tribunal, your

7 Tribunal, to defend the accused accused of war crimes.

8 And that group of lawyers was carefully selected on the

9 basis of the dossiers that they had on them in the

10 State Security Service.

11 The lawyers were given the task of

12 controlling the accused, of contacting the accused, of

13 threatening them that they should not in their

14 testimony implicate others, to tell them that their

15 families were in Yugoslavia in a difficult situation,

16 that they would be persecuted and, if necessary, to

17 compel them to submit suicide. That was the plan

18 which, for me, was a monstrous plan at the time, and I

19 couldn't believe it, in fact, but as this was told to

20 me by a man working in the State Security Service and

21 who occupied such a high position, I had to believe

22 him. I wrote this article as a result, and,

23 unfortunately, life has proved that this was so, and I

24 wrote the text in 1995. I would like to have been

25 wrong, that this was just one more bad newspaper

Page 618

1 article.

2 When one finds oneself in a prison in another

3 country, he is alone. He has the prosecutors, he has

4 the judges, and his natural ally is his lawyer. It is

5 the lawyer through which he has contact with the

6 outside, and it is the lawyer who helps him to function

7 socially, Your Honours. The role of lawyers in

8 communism and the country that I come from was that

9 this last straw, whether we're talking about a serious

10 criminal or not, it was the task to cut that straw.

11 Some Serbian lawyers used their profession and handed

12 their clients on a plate, and they remained completely

13 helpless.

14 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Mr. Brkic, can you tell

15 me this: Did the material which you had enable you to

16 say what was the reaction of Mr. Vujin when Mr. Fila

17 said, "Gentlemen, there is no client whom I cannot

18 sell. I'm the biggest Judas of all, and I'm proud of

19 it"?

20 A. The member of the State Security Service or

21 the functionary which gave me these facts recounted to

22 me the contents of the talk with the group of lawyers

23 who were called to the security service. I do not know

24 in precise terms whether they were individual talks or

25 whether they were all invited collectively, to a

Page 619

1 collective meeting, so that I cannot tell you in

2 precise terms, but I did make a note of those words

3 taken from my conversation with the man working for the

4 State Security Service who invited me to present the

5 plan of his service vis-a-vis the lawyers.

6 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Did that information

7 enable you to tell whether Mr. Vujin was present when

8 Mr. Fila made that statement?

9 A. Your Honours, as the journalist who had come

10 to get certain information, as I say, I wasn't too

11 curious, I wasn't too inquisitive, because my position

12 was one of a journalist, and it did not allow me to be

13 too inquisitive and curious. I just listened to what

14 was being told to me, and you will probably admit that

15 had I gone into details, I would have lost the

16 confidence of the man who had invited me there. He

17 gave me as much information as he saw fit, as he

18 thought necessary, if you understand me, and this is

19 the natural relationship between the person giving out

20 information and the person receiving information.

21 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Should I then take it

22 that the limitations within which you work did not

23 enable you to tell whether Mr. Vujin was present when

24 Mr. Fila made that statement?

25 A. I personally was convinced that he was

Page 620

1 present and that a dialogue of this kind had taken

2 place.

3 Your Honours, if I may, I have just recalled

4 one point. Before I published the article, the editor

5 in chief of the paper in which the text appeared asked

6 me for proof. He wanted to see whether he would be

7 able to prove the truthfulness of the allegations in

8 the text because otherwise we would have probably been

9 sued for high amounts, and I myself would have had to

10 have rigid responsibilities. I asked to be received by

11 the individual at the State Security Service, and he

12 gave me a piece of paper to sign for keeping secrets

13 and confidentiality. He did give me some notes. I

14 showed this to my editor in chief. We sealed the

15 envelope, we returned the printed matter, and the

16 article went forward.

17 If it means anything to you, I published the

18 article in an opposition paper. The State Security

19 Service, by nature of their jobs, are there to protect

20 the state leadership. So I do not believe that the

21 information that I was given was false, was incorrect,

22 because they had no reason to do this, apart from the

23 fact that as individuals, they might not have agreed

24 with what was being done, that it was below their

25 dignity, and this, one day, would ultimately do our

Page 621

1 country more harm. I think that they did this for

2 those reasons, but I leave it to you to assess.

3 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Indeed. In Exhibit 9,

4 in the second paragraph, you do, indeed, say: "I

5 published this text after the editorial board's

6 decision that I should give the editor in chief proof

7 of the truthfulness of the text and the assertions

8 contained therein," and in your testimony, you alluded

9 to the risk of your being sued. Has there been any

10 litigation between you and Mr. Vujin?

11 A. Yes. I think that the six lawyers who were

12 mentioned on this list have filed a charge with the

13 court for the harm done. This was done in 1995. They

14 had in mind procedural matters, and I think that it

15 would have taken effect up to now. I was a witness in

16 a court of law, although a ruling has not yet been

17 made. I know that two lawyers of the six have

18 withdrawn charges, of the six that tendered charges. I

19 can give you their names. They are Branimir Gugl and

20 Nebojsa Pavlovic, and they said that they do not feel

21 that they have been libelled. Mr. Fila filed the

22 charge for remuneration of damages, and they said that

23 their signatures were used.

24 At the court in Belgrade, several judges took

25 their turn in the case, and as I followed the work of

Page 622

1 the court in my professional work and I know most of

2 the judges in Belgrade, one of the judges -- I wanted

3 to show to one of the judges what I had at my disposal,

4 the records and official notes made by the State

5 Security Service, and she said, "Well, we don't need

6 that. We all know who all those attorneys are. You

7 don't have to prove anything to us. We're well aware

8 of that." A ruling has not yet been made. The

9 judgement has not yet been made.

10 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Thank you. Let me take

11 you specifically to your relations with Mr. Vujin. Has

12 there been any litigation between the two of you in

13 respect of any of these allegations which you have

14 made?

15 A. Mr. Vujin is one of these six lawyers who

16 filed charges against me in court.

17 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: I see. Thank you.

18 Following our usual procedure, I would now

19 invite Mr. Abell to ask any questions; thereafter, the

20 Prosecution and then Mr. Vujin.

21 Questioned by Mr. Abell:

22 Q. Mr. Brkic, I represent Dusko Tadic in these

23 proceedings, who is an interested party to the contempt

24 proceedings against Mr. Vujin.

25 I would like to start by asking you about the

Page 623

1 litigation that you were just asked about. You told us

2 that there were six lawyers who sued yourself, and

3 amongst those six lawyers was Mr. Milan Vujin; is that

4 correct?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. Was the litigation against you personally or

7 against you and your newspaper?

8 A. Against the newspaper, against the newspaper

9 because the newspaper carried the story, and I

10 testified as the author of that story.

11 Q. So you were a witness, but the defendant in

12 the litigation was the newspaper?

13 A. The newspaper. Yes, they were the legal

14 person, the publisher; that is to say, the newspaper

15 publishing house Srpska Rec, and I was only called in

16 as a witness, and I testified before the court as a

17 sworn witness.

18 Q. What stage have the proceedings against the

19 newspaper reached?

20 A. To be quite truthful, I can present only my

21 very own point of view. I don't think that the courts

22 or the prosecutors are interested in bringing these

23 proceedings to an end. Otherwise, if we take into

24 account how much time has elapsed, this should have

25 been over three years ago.

Page 624

1 Q. The action, the litigation, commenced when?

2 A. If you wish to have a precise answer, the

3 trial started in 1995. Marina Govedarica was the

4 presiding judge, and that chamber rejected the charges

5 that were brought against the paper. They said that

6 due process was not taken into account. Toma Fila,

7 they say, did not know how to actually compose this

8 report. He brought charges against a newspaper, and

9 the newspaper is not a legal person, according to the

10 law that is valid in Yugoslavia, and that is why the

11 court had to reject this paper --

12 Q. Pause, please. The question I asked was when

13 the litigation started, and the answer is, to your

14 knowledge, in 1995. To your knowledge, has there ever

15 been a judgement in the proceedings against your

16 newspaper?

17 A. Yes. The first judgement was passed in

18 1996. It happened in Belgrade; that is to say, this

19 document was rejected as impermissible.

20 Q. In other words, it was a judgement in favour

21 of the newspaper?

22 A. Yes. The district court that ruled on this,

23 and I was involved, I had the status of an involved

24 person, I said that obviously the accused have a poor

25 lawyer, Mr. Toma Fila, who is not very knowledgable in

Page 625

1 matters of law, and it would be a good thing to take

2 this back and --

3 Q. Mr. Brkic, I'm going to interrupt you and

4 stop you. I wanted you to clarify that the judgement

5 that you speak of was not against the newspaper; it was

6 against the people who had brought the proceedings, had

7 brought the litigation. Am I right in that?

8 A. Yes. Yes, you're quite right, and I thought

9 that I was quite accurate.

10 Q. What I want to ask you now is, to your

11 knowledge, has there, in proceedings brought by

12 Mr. Vujin and others against your newspaper, ever been

13 a judgement against you in this matter?

14 A. Sir, they could have started action on

15 several scores -- that is to say, libel, criminal

16 proceedings -- and then they could also seek

17 compensation, so there could have been several courses

18 of action taken. I already said that the initial

19 judgement rejected all of this for formal reasons

20 because they had not composed their criminal report,

21 because they brought charges against perpetrators

22 unknown, and the newspaper itself is not a legal

23 person, as I already said.

24 I already said to you that the judgement was

25 in favour of Srpska Rec, the publisher the charges were

Page 626

1 brought against, and it was against the persons who

2 brought charges because their legal counsel, Mr. Toma

3 Fila, did not know how to compose the document

4 containing charges according to the law on litigation.

5 Q. I'm going to ask you, given what you've said

6 to us, to look, please, at a document which is at pages

7 602, really, to 617, which is in a filing made on the

8 23rd of April of this year by Mr. Vujin, information

9 submitted by Mr. Vujin.

10 MR. ABELL: As I say, it should be in Your

11 Honours' papers at page 602 through to 617, 618. A

12 scheduling order, on my pagination, is at page 634, if

13 that assists. Could it please be shown to the

14 witness?

15 Q. I appreciate, Mr. Brkic, that that document

16 you've been given is in English. It was filed, to the

17 best of my knowledge, by Mr. Vujin in English, and I

18 don't believe -- at least if there is, I've never seen

19 it -- that there is any Serbo-Croat, Yugoslavian

20 original document of which that is a translation. But

21 I want you, please, to look, if you can, at page 611,

22 top right, 6-1-1, top right.

23 A. I imagine that these were the charges brought

24 against -- yes?

25 MR. ABELL: I don't know whether Your Honours

Page 627

1 have copies or whether it would be easier if the

2 document is put on the epidiascope so that the Court

3 can follow the document at the same time.

4 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: That will certainly be

5 helpful to me because I am not in the happy position of

6 having the documents, and I believe there are other

7 colleagues who are in the similar position.

8 MR. VUJIN: Your Honour, may I just intervene

9 at this point?

10 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Yes.

11 MR. VUJIN: Thank you, Your Honour.

12 In the brief that I sent by mail, in addition

13 to all the texts that were translated into English that

14 I sent by fax in order to save time, I sent to the

15 Court the originals or rather photocopies of these

16 documents in the Serbo-Croat language, and I'm sure

17 that the Court should have these documents in the

18 Serbian language as well.

19 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Thank you, Mr. Vujin.

20 Mr. Abell, are you in a position to proceed?

21 Is the witness handicapped in any way?

22 MR. ABELL: Your Honour, we shall have to

23 see. The document is in English. For reasons which

24 will become apparent in a moment, if I can just say,

25 for reasons which will become apparent in a moment, the

Page 628

1 originals may be very important.

2 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Mr. Vujin is signalling

3 that he has an original.

4 MR. ABELL: That's helpful.

5 THE REGISTRAR: This document could be

6 numbered as being Exhibit 11 because we do not have the

7 original in Serbo-Croatian in our files.

8 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Any objections from the

9 Prosecution? No objections. Then the document is

10 admitted.

11 MR. ABELL: May I see the document before

12 it's passed to the witness, Your Honour?

13 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Yes, Mr. Vujin?

14 MR. VUJIN: Your Honour, may I be free to

15 leave for five minutes, please? I have to go to my car

16 only for five minutes in order to get the originals of

17 these documents.

18 A. Your Honour, I have understood the substance

19 of these documents, and I do not need the originals in

20 the Serbian language.

21 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Mr. Vujin, you've heard

22 what the witness has said. It's now ten minutes to

23 one. We will be breaking off shortly, and you may then

24 conveniently go to your car for any additional material

25 you may require. Thank you very much.

Page 629

1 MR. VUJIN: Yes.

2 MR. ABELL: What I want to ask you,

3 Mr. Brkic, is this: The document which we have in

4 English -- I wonder if it could be put on the screen so

5 people can follow it.

6 On page 611, the first page of the document,

7 it appears to be -- 611. Could it be moved, please, so

8 we could see the top of the document? Further down.

9 Thank you.

10 It appears to be a translation of a document,

11 and it says: "Law office, Fila, First Municipal Court

12 in Belgrade, Belgrade," filed on April the 27th, 1995,

13 and then there are a list of Prosecutors, Tomo Fila;

14 Guberina; Milan Vujin from New Belgrade, with an

15 address; and then there are various other names. Are

16 those the lawyers to which you have just referred to,

17 Mr. Brkic, who are suing your newspaper?

18 A. Yes. Yes, these are the lawyers concerned.

19 With your permission, I have here before me the

20 original, rather, a copy of the original that the court

21 or, rather, Judge Govedarica ruled on this and actually

22 rejected this, and I already said her name was

23 Govedarica.

24 Q. I know. Can I come to that in a moment? The

25 accused, still on that page, is Slobodne Novine, Srpska

Page 630

1 Rec. Is that a Serb word? That's for "newspaper"?

2 A. "Srpska Rec" is the newspaper, and

3 "Slobodne," that is a qualification. A newspaper is a

4 newspaper, and whether a newspaper is opposition or

5 pro-government, or free or not free, that is a question

6 of taste, and that is why a newspaper cannot be called

7 a free newspaper, Slobodne.

8 They didn't even know how to compose this

9 document. As I said, they could have brought charges

10 against Srpska Rec. Srpska Rec is a legal person.

11 They have a giro account, et cetera, et cetera. But

12 why did they put this, "Slobodne"? I mean, that shows

13 you how professional these lawyers are, begging your

14 pardon.

15 Q. Mr. Brkic, that's the name of the newspaper

16 then. Then we see that the suit, the litigation, is

17 for compensation for damage in issue 199 of the

18 magazine for March the 13th of 1995, and the headline,

19 if the clerk can kindly move it up, the headline is the

20 journalist, Milovan Brkic, titled "Secret Police

21 Travels to The Hague", with the subheadline "The

22 Lawyers Provocateurs First Extort the Confession From

23 Their Clients and Then Deliver Them to the Police."

24 Is that a reference to the article that you

25 have referred to in your two statements which were

Page 631

1 filed before this Court?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. I want to, before the luncheon adjournment,

4 move to the point that I'm trying to make. If we go

5 now, please, to page 608, although the page number is

6 before 611, this, in fact, is page 4 of that document,

7 because the court pagination, forgive me, appears to be

8 in reverse.

9 On that page, towards the bottom, do we see

10 "The Judgement: The accused Slobodne Novine 'Srpska

11 Rec' from Belgrade is obliged to pay the prosecutors as

12 the compensation for the non-material damage of psyche

13 injury," it reads, "to Toma Fila for the injury of his

14 honour and reputation and the honour and reputation of

15 his father late Filota File the amount of 10,000.00

16 dinars, to Veljko Guberina for the injury of his honour

17 and reputation the amount of 10,000.00 dinars, to Milan

18 Vujin for the injury of his honour and his reputation

19 the amount of 10,000.00 dinars," and so it goes on, in

20 other words, purporting to be a judgement against the

21 newspaper? Do you understand?

22 A. I understand, but I think that you have not

23 understood. This is the proposal of a judgement that

24 is mentioned in the charges that are brought against a

25 person. You have to -- when you're filing charges

Page 632

1 against someone, you have to say what kind of a ruling

2 you would like the court to pass and this is just a

3 proposal. Have you understood what I said?

4 Q. Yes, I think so. Is it in any way a final

5 judgement against the newspaper?

6 A. I think we have not understood each other at

7 all. You quoted a document to me which are the charges

8 that were brought by the lawyers. When they bring

9 charges before a court of law, then they have to

10 propose a judgement, what they would like the judgement

11 to be. So you can see this in the Serbian original.

12 Then it is the court that passes the judgement.

13 I'm sorry. You are not familiar with our

14 criminal procedure and legislation, but according to

15 our criminal legislation, when a party brings charges

16 before a court of law, then they have to put in this

17 document what kind of a judgement they would like the

18 court to pass. It would be very regrettable if we did

19 not understand one another because these are very

20 important things.

21 Q. I agree, and I want to be clear, and if I'm

22 the only one who is not, the position is this: That

23 this is not a final judgement. You're saying it's

24 merely a lawyer's document inviting the court to make

25 that judgement in the future; is that correct?

Page 633

1 A. Yes. Yes.

2 Q. Thank you. Well, I have more questions to

3 put after lunch. I'm going to move from that topic.

4 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Thank you, Mr. Abell.

5 This is a convenient -- yes, Ms. Hollis.

6 MS. HOLLIS: Your Honours, if the Prosecution

7 could beg the indulgence of the Appeals Chamber and ask

8 to go into private session for a clarification before

9 the luncheon recess, not closed but private, as to a

10 matter earlier decided, Your Honour.

11 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: You assure the bench it

12 will not necessitate any considerable extension of time

13 beyond --

14 MS. HOLLIS: No, Your Honour.

15 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: -- 1.00? Mr. Registrar,

16 you can do that.

17 [Private session]

18 (redacted)

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19 --- Luncheon recess taken at 1.07 p.m.

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Page 638

1 --- On resuming at 2.40 p.m.

2 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: The sitting is resumed.

3 Mr. Yapa, you're on your feet.

4 MR. YAPA: I have an application to make,

5 Your Honour. May I be excused from the rest of the

6 proceedings this afternoon?

7 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Indeed.

8 Mr. Abell, you were on your legs at the

9 adjournment.

10 MR. ABELL: I was, indeed.

11 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Yes.

12 [The witness entered court]

13 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Yes. Do be seated.

14 MR. ABELL:

15 Q. Mr. Brkic, I want to continue to ask you

16 questions, and I don't want you for one moment to

17 misunderstand me in the questions I was asking you

18 before lunch. I am not suggesting that there was a

19 judgement by the court against your newspaper. I

20 simply wanted your evidence to confirm that the case

21 was not decided in favour of Mr. Vujin. In case

22 anybody who saw the papers that I showed you before

23 lunch had misunderstood and thought that that was

24 actually a judgement, I wanted your evidence to say

25 there was none. Do you understand?

Page 639

1 A. Yes. Yes, I've understood now.

2 Q. Thank you. Let us leave that topic alone

3 now.

4 I have a series of questions for you, and it

5 will help me and it may help Their Honours, if you, as

6 I'm sure you will, listen carefully to my questions and

7 try to answer just the question I ask. If I want more

8 information from you, I'll ask it. All right?

9 A. All right.

10 Q. Firstly, can I ask you this: Do you know

11 Dusko Tadic personally?

12 A. No.

13 Q. Do you know any member of his family

14 personally?

15 A. No.

16 Q. Do you know Mr. Vujin personally?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. Have you met him?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. Have you ever been present at any meetings or

21 conversations that he has had?

22 A. I was present with one of my colleagues, the

23 editor of Student, in the office of Mr. Guberina in

24 which Mr. Vujin was also present and a lady, Mrs. Mara

25 Pilipovic, who works in the same office as Mr. Vujin.

Page 640

1 I think that we were even on friendly terms. That is

2 what we could term them. That is how I envisaged

3 them.

4 Q. Do you have any personal grudge or bias

5 against Mr. Vujin?

6 A. No, I personally do not. Really, I do not.

7 I have never had any personal conflicts with

8 Mr. Vujin. For your information, Mr. Fila's offices

9 have sued me on several occasions with regard to their

10 clients, but we are on very good terms. We sit down

11 together, we talk together, and it's their job to do

12 what is their job, and luckily, they have brought no

13 charges, nothing personal.

14 Q. Do you have any particular favouritism or

15 feelings towards Mr. Tadic or bias towards him?

16 A. I see the man for the first time. I can only

17 suppose that the man sitting over there is Mr. Dusko

18 Tadic, but I have never seen him before. I just know

19 that our police turned him over in Germany, that is,

20 they took him to Germany for him to be turned over to

21 the Tribunal, for them to bring an indictment against

22 him.

23 Q. My question was: Do you have any personal

24 favouritism or bias towards Mr. Tadic?

25 A. No, I cannot have any personal favouritism

Page 641

1 for somebody who I did not know existed. I don't know

2 where he comes from, I know none of Mr. Tadic's family,

3 and I am not really interested, that is to say, I have

4 no relationship towards the acts that he performed.

5 Whether he's guilty or not, that is something for the

6 Tribunal to ascertain. So I cannot comment and,

7 therefore, I have no personal relationship towards

8 him.

9 Q. Thank you. What is it that drove you or

10 motivated you to make the two statements that you --

11 well, no, firstly, the article which you wrote, the

12 newspaper article which is attached to the two

13 statements that have been filed in this Court? What is

14 it that drove you or motivated you to write that

15 article?

16 A. I wanted, as a journalist, to inform the

17 public of the Republic of Serbia, the state in which I

18 live, that our political leadership is endeavouring to

19 behave in such a way as to obstruct the International

20 Tribunal in a way that is not -- does not befit it, and

21 I wanted to inform my readers of the intentions of the

22 regime.

23 Q. Were you aware, when you wrote the article,

24 that it obviously contains serious allegations about

25 members of the legal profession?

Page 642

1 A. At all events, I consider myself to be a

2 responsible individual and against me as a journalist,

3 and I have always given my all to the profession. I

4 have given my life to the profession in the struggle

5 for democracy in my own country, and I risked my own

6 life in doing so.

7 More than 570 times criminal charges were

8 brought against me for slander, liable and so forth by

9 the protagonists of the state. Of the 570 charges

10 brought against me, I have only lost one case with the

11 son of the president of the Federal Republic of

12 Yugoslavia, Mr. Slobodan Milosevic. The court

13 concluded in that particular case that I presented

14 untruths with regard to the property and riches of the

15 son of the president of Yugoslavia, Mr. Milosevic, and

16 I had to pay compensation, fines. But from all the

17 others you can deduce whether I have done my job

18 professionally or not.

19 Q. So out of 570 cases brought against you, 569

20 you have won is what you're saying?

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. Thank you. Can you help me about this --

23 forgive me, but back to the question I asked you which

24 is this: When you wrote the article, presumably you

25 realised that it contained serious allegations against

Page 643

1 members of the legal profession in the former

2 Yugoslavia.

3 A. As you're asking me that question, I suppose

4 that you know of the country I live in, and that for

5 assertions and allegations of that kind in a text you

6 can be brought before a criminal court of law. You can

7 lose a lot of money and you can lose your head, because

8 privately any associate of the regime or criminal can

9 ask for your head and ask for your murder.

10 I had no personal reason to subject myself to

11 that danger. I wanted to help the democratic forces in

12 the country so that in my own country too conditions

13 could be made for democratic institutions to flourish.

14 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Mr. Abell, may I ask you

15 to explore a little more this aspect, whether these

16 slander actions were of a criminal nature or a civil

17 nature?

18 MR. ABELL: I will, Your Honour. Can I just

19 deal with this point?

20 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Of course. Of course.

21 MR. ABELL:

22 Q. Mr. Brkic, you have really answered the next

23 question that I was going to ask, which was that you

24 are aware of the consequences of telling such serious

25 lies if they are lies?

Page 644

1 A. Yes. If I may, I would like to quote the

2 example of 1987, when I published an article in a

3 newspaper which was published in Ljubljana, Slovenia, a

4 text and the title of "There Are People at Play in Our

5 Country of Serbia", and I set out the initial policies

6 of the president, Mr. Slobodan Milosevic. I analysed

7 his personal and family circumstances.

8 As I say, I analysed his personal and family

9 circumstances, and because of that text which was

10 published in Slovenia, that is to say, in another

11 republic, the magistrate in Belgrade gave me 50 days

12 imprisonment for violating the repute of social and

13 political organisations, and nothing like that existed

14 in any laws of the world apart from that of Hitler's

15 Germany and in Stalin's code of law.

16 So I spent 15 days in prison, but the Supreme

17 Court of the Republic of Serbia refuted its sentence

18 and set me free. That is to say, fined me with a fine

19 of 1.000 dinars because I did not give my correct

20 address. For that incrimination I paid the fee and the

21 fine and I was released.

22 So I am conscious of the repercussions of the

23 articles I write and the risks I run in writing those

24 texts, of course, if the facts are incorrect and

25 unsubstantiated.

Page 645

1 I am not a masochist, nor am I a psychopath

2 to go against me, so it is very difficult to prove the

3 correctness of your quotations, particularly if -- even

4 if you do do so in a court of law. This has no

5 repercussions on the people that you have quoted, and

6 20 per cent of my texts, luckily, that I have published

7 were initiated by proceedings against people who abuse

8 their functions, state functions, political functions,

9 or functions within courts of law.

10 Q. Please pause there, Mr. Brkic. Just help me

11 with this question, just to clarify the situation. If

12 this article that you had written was a tissue of lies

13 in the allegations it makes against Mr. Vujin and his

14 colleagues, would you be subject just to possible civil

15 liable action or could you be subject to a criminal

16 charge in your country?

17 A. Mr. Milan Vujin, the lawyer, could, according

18 to the Criminal Code, bring in a criminal charge

19 against me on the basis of Article 92 of the Criminal

20 Code of the Republic of Serbia, that is the criminal

21 action of slander and liable, and Article 93 of the

22 Republic of Serbia.

23 For that kind of crime you can go to prison

24 for one year. The prison sentence is a maximum of one

25 year, or if the prosecutor has proved that there were

Page 646

1 more serious violations, then the imprisonment can be

2 from six months to three years imprisonment.

3 The criminal charge -- Mr. Milan Vujin or the

4 other lawyers did not file criminal charges against me,

5 nor did they mention me as the individual encompassed

6 in the charge and action, although, according to the

7 law on public information in the Republic of Serbia,

8 which was in force at the time, according to Article

9 13, I was subject for a misdemeanour, but as I say,

10 they only sued the paper and not myself as the author

11 of the article. By filing a criminal charge, this does

12 not exclude proceedings and litigation. They are two

13 actions that can be brought parallelly.

14 Q. So in other words, you could personally have

15 been sued in the civil courts for liable and also been

16 made a defendant in criminal proceedings if this

17 article contains lies about Mr. Vujin and his

18 colleagues?

19 A. In the criminal proceedings I could only have

20 been responsible, because I was the author of the

21 text. So I could only have been incorporated in this

22 criminal proceeding. In the civil courts, according to

23 Article 13 of the Law on Public Information for Serbia,

24 which was abolished last year but was strict at the

25 time in the extreme sense for payment of fines, and it

Page 647

1 is the publisher of the newspaper that could have

2 been -- that charges could have been filed against. So

3 I was left out of all that. I was left out of the

4 action.

5 Q. Your editor, he obviously would have seen

6 your article before a decision was made to publish it

7 in the newspaper; is that correct?

8 A. Yes, that is correct.

9 Q. Is he also a man who is well aware of the

10 consequences of publishing serious lies that could

11 damage an important man's reputation, in his

12 newspaper?

13 A. Perhaps you consider us coming from Serbia

14 citizens of the Third Order, but the man editing the

15 paper is a serious man and, therefore, I see no reason

16 for you to ask me questions which -- do you want to say

17 that we are all irresponsible?

18 Q. No. You may misunderstand me. I'm not

19 trying to suggest that at all. I'm trying to establish

20 that you as a journalist, and your editor as a

21 newspaper editor, would not be in the business of

22 publishing serious lies. That's what I'm trying to

23 establish from you, bring out in your evidence.

24 A. In the society in which I live and in the

25 state in which I live, sir, the publication of

Page 648

1 falsehoods is not only sanctioned legally but my very

2 life can be in danger.

3 Q. Does it come to this: That you were driven

4 to publish that article because it was the truth from

5 your investigations, and because you considered that it

6 was a serious enough situation that your investigations

7 had uncovered that it should be published and made

8 known to the public?

9 A. I deeply believe in freedom and democracy.

10 My people, unfortunately, are not free, and in the

11 state that I come from there is no democracy. This is

12 shown by the fact that the key people in my country

13 have been indicted by this Tribunal for the gravest of

14 crimes.

15 Being a journalist and publishing articles,

16 including the one that we are discussing right now, I

17 wanted to avoid new scandals. I believed that one day

18 the role of our lawyers in the defence of indictees

19 before The Hague Tribunal would finally be revealed.

20 At that time I could not have envisaged that

21 proceedings would be initiated against Mr. Vujin before

22 this Tribunal. I did not initiate these proceedings.

23 I published this article four years ago. I believe

24 that you do not think that I am a prophet and that I

25 was in a position to foresee this.

Page 649

1 Q. The question was: Were you driven to write

2 and have published this article because your

3 investigation showed that it was the truth? It's a

4 very simple question.

5 A. If it were not the truth, I would not have

6 published the article.

7 Q. Thank you. Now, I just want to ask you one

8 or two questions to expand one or two points that you

9 raise in the article.

10 Could we please look at page 2 of the

11 article?

12 MR. ABELL: If it assists Your Honours, it

13 probably doesn't, but the top right it's page 5356.

14 Page 2, bottom right of the article.

15 Q. Do you have it, Mr. Brkic? You have the

16 original in your language. If it helps, I will read

17 out the paragraph that I am referring to:

18 "When the possibility of trying war

19 criminals was announced and the proposal for

20 establishing a International Tribunal was put forward,

21 the president," there's a gap which isn't legible, "the

22 president of the Serbian bar association, Milan Vujin,

23 and statements by Mr. Guberina, they all denigrated the

24 idea of trying war criminals."

25 Do you have that passage?

Page 650

1 A. If I understood you correctly, you are asking

2 me whether it is true that all lawyers who appear

3 before the International Criminal Tribunal as defence

4 counsel for the accused, in their statements, and in

5 the bar association of Serbia, and in the Yugoslav and

6 Serb media reject --

7 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Mr. Brkic, counsel is

8 only asking you at this time if you have located the

9 passage in the article.

10 MR. ABELL: I'm very grateful to Your

11 Honour.

12 Q. Mr. Brkic, please don't worry. I'm just

13 trying to do -- I'm just trying to make sure that

14 you --

15 A. Translation is no good.

16 Q. All right. Please listen, Mr. Brkic. I'm

17 trying to make sure that you have got the paragraph

18 that I am trying to ask you about. That's all. I'm

19 not making any accusations. I'm not attacking you,

20 Mr. Brkic, at all. I hope you understand me. I just

21 want you to identify the paragraph. Okay?

22 If it helps, I have it in the English

23 translation, two or three paragraphs down from a

24 heading "Opposed But Ready". I don't know if that

25 helps you, Mr. Brkic. And the paragraph describes a

Page 651

1 declaration --

2 A. Yeah. Right.

3 Q. -- denigrating the trying of war criminals.

4 Tell me when you've found that paragraph.

5 A. Unfortunately, this translation is no good

6 or, rather, the photocopy is no good.

7 Q. Do you mean the original newspaper article?

8 A. Yes. Yes. You can see it from there, can't

9 you? See? It's a very bad photocopy. I know what I

10 wrote in the text but I can't find it here. See? You

11 can see what a poor photocopy it is.

12 Q. I don't know whether there exists with the

13 Tribunal a better photocopy. The only document that

14 has reached me is the English translation. I think I'm

15 the same as everyone else, all the other lawyers in the

16 case, all the other parties.

17 A. I found it. I found it.

18 Q. Good. Thank you, Mr. Brkic.

19 A. It says all of them were opposed to the idea

20 of trying individuals for war crimes.

21 Q. Does that include Mr. Milan Vujin?

22 A. Yes. Yes. Mr. Vujin often appeared in the

23 media, and he denied the right of The Hague Tribunal to

24 try war criminals, and then he said that this court was

25 unfounded, and that they were not in charge, and that

Page 652

1 the United Nations were not entitled to set up ad hoc

2 Tribunals for war crimes and that the aim of this was

3 to discredit Serbs.

4 Q. Were you ever present at any meeting, either

5 private or public, to hear Mr. Vujin expressing those

6 views?

7 A. I watched Mr. Vujin on television. I saw him

8 appear on TV programmes and I read what he said in the

9 newspapers.

10 Q. And it was on that topic, was it?

11 A. Yes, on that topic, on the topic of the

12 attitude of the Yugoslav judiciary towards the

13 International Tribunal.

14 Q. So opposed to the Tribunal, opposed to the

15 work of the Tribunal, and opposed to discrediting

16 Serbs?

17 A. They believed that the Tribunal was a

18 political means of pressure against the Serbs and that

19 it was created with a view to depicting Serbs as

20 criminals in the eyes of the world. It did not

21 recognise the legitimacy and legality of the Tribunal,

22 but they all came to defend persons accused before this

23 very same Tribunal.

24 Q. So in our English translation, just a few

25 lines further down: "When the Serbian Bar Association

Page 653

1 received a polite call to draw up a list of ten

2 attorneys and send it to the Tribunal," do you have

3 that part?

4 A. I know I wrote that, yes. Yes, I can see it

5 here.

6 Q. Thank you. Just read the paragraph to

7 yourself. You say: "The same lawyers who vowed

8 that 'In the name of constitutional principles, we must

9 not allow the surrender of our people' made a secret

10 list in the State Security Service signing a statement

11 that they would loyally cooperate with the service and

12 that as defence counsel, they would report on the

13 behaviour of suspects in court."

14 What was the basis of your saying that, that

15 there was a secret list of lawyers who would cooperate

16 with the service, UDBA, and report on the behaviour of

17 suspects?

18 A. I already told you that I had established

19 contact with a man in a high position in the State

20 Security Service, and he showed me this list that was

21 made up and was headed by Mr. Vujin. I think at that

22 time, he was the president of the bar association of

23 Belgrade.

24 Q. That is Mr. Vujin?

25 A. Yes.

Page 654

1 Q. Would you have ever published such a thing if

2 you had not been convinced that it was a true fact?

3 A. I never would have published it otherwise

4 because, indeed, I hold nothing against Mr. Vujin.

5 Would any normal person accuse anyone of that? What

6 would be my reasons for doing that? Why would I expose

7 myself to the danger of being criminally charged and

8 being tried and being ordered to pay fines, et cetera?

9 After all, various persons could say, "Look, this man

10 is persecuting me. Take care of him." Of course I

11 would not have exposed myself to all of that had I not

12 profoundly believed in it.

13 Q. Can we go to a place a little further in your

14 article?

15 MR. ABELL: Your Honours, it's near the

16 bottom of page 5.

17 Q. "Sources acquainted with the work of this

18 group of provocateurs from the ranks of attorneys claim

19 that the preparation and special training of Hague

20 attorneys has already begun to make them capable of

21 controlling their clients, to warn them to keep their

22 mouths shut and to be careful not to get carried away

23 and denigrate Serbian leaders."

24 Again, would you have contemplated publishing

25 such a thing if you had not been convinced that it was

Page 655

1 the truth?

2 A. No. No, I, indeed, would not have written

3 that otherwise for various reasons, for several

4 reasons. Persons who were already aware that they were

5 going to The Hague, I mean, I would not want to upset

6 them, that they would have to face such lawyers. I

7 would not wish to expose the State of Serbia to yet a

8 new shameful thing that could compromise it even more

9 before the international public.

10 Q. Was Mr. Vujin, from the information you

11 received, one of these people you referred to as Hague

12 attorneys involved in controlling their clients,

13 warning them to keep their mouths shut and not to get

14 carried away and denigrate Serbian leaders?

15 A. Whether he did that in the case of Mr. Tadic

16 or not, I do not know. But I know that as for the

17 plans of the State Security Service, he held a

18 significant position in those plans.

19 Q. Mr. Vujin held a significant position in

20 those plans, if this is a fair way of putting it, to

21 control --

22 A. The secret service.

23 Q. -- to control defendants before the Tribunal,

24 to prevent them implicating, saying anything that may

25 implicate other people as yet undetected?

Page 656

1 A. Yes.

2 Q. Does that include, if need be, to control

3 their clients for the "good of the state" even at the

4 expense of those individual defendants' own chances of

5 putting forward a proper defence?

6 A. Individuals indicted by the International

7 Criminal Tribunal are of no significance whatsoever to

8 the state leadership of the country. They only wanted

9 them not to go too far in their defence, and they had

10 their families as hostages.

11 Q. I just want to ask you one or two questions,

12 Mr. Brkic, about the two statements that you made dated

13 the 8th of February of this year and the 18th of

14 February of this year. Please go with me to the one

15 dated the 18th of February. I want now to be very

16 specific about Mr. Tadic's case and Mr. Vujin.

17 You make an assertion or a conclusion in your

18 evidence, in your written statement, number 2: "I have

19 information that he controlled evidence," that is,

20 Mr. Vujin, "in the case of the criminal proceedings

21 against Mr. Dusko Tadic and that he manipulated the

22 evidence on the orders of the Serbian MUP ..." Help us

23 with that. "MUP" is?

24 A. Ministry of the Interior. Within the

25 Ministry of the Interior is the State Security

Page 657

1 Service.

2 Q. Reading on: "... and the Information and

3 Documentation Service of the Ministry of Foreign

4 Affairs with the aim of preventing Mr. Dusko Tadic from

5 implicating other perpetrators in his testimony before

6 the Tribunal and exposing high officials in Republika

7 Srpska, Serbia, and Montenegro to prosecution. This

8 information comes from the highest ranks of the Serbian

9 MUP."

10 Then at paragraph 5, you say: "I do not

11 merely believe that Mr. Vujin undermined Mr. Dusko

12 Tadic's defence. I have concrete proof of this which I

13 cannot present in this written answer."

14 Those two paragraphs pose a very serious

15 question, Mr. Brkic. Are they the truth as you know it

16 to be from your investigations and your information?

17 A. I don't know whether my statement will make

18 Mr. Tadic's defence more difficult, but I'm going to

19 tell you the truth, and I hope Mr. Tadic will forgive

20 me. The wife of Mr. Tadic is not a citizen of the

21 Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, and Mr. Vujin made it

22 possible for Mrs. Tadic to obtain Yugoslav

23 citizenship. Of course, the granting of citizenship

24 was a protracted process, and when Mr. Dusan Tadic

25 became aware or, rather, when he withdrew his power of

Page 658

1 attorney, when he did not want Mr. Vujin to represent

2 him anymore, Mr. Vujin helped the family of the accused

3 Tadic financially from the money that he got from the

4 Tribunal for the defence of Mr. Tadic.

5 Q. The question I ask is whether the statements

6 you make in paragraph 2 and 5 of your statement are the

7 truth.

8 A. Yes. Do you want me to explain how I came to

9 know this?

10 Q. Yes, I was just about to ask you. Did you

11 have a source? I'm not asking you at the moment to

12 name that person, but did you have a source or sources

13 for this information?

14 A. Yes. A man from the State Security Service

15 showed me that Mr. Tadic, when he talked to the

16 investigators in the International Criminal Tribunal,

17 he "talked a lot", and that he told the Tribunal about

18 everything that he knew that was going on in Republika

19 Srpska, and that his defence had implicated quite a few

20 persons in Republika Srpska as persons who had

21 committed grave crimes against humanity, and that is

22 what this Tribunal was set up for.

23 He asked his defence counsel, Mr. Vujin, to

24 investigate this, to go and to see people who could

25 testify on behalf of his defence, and Mr. Vujin,

Page 659

1 underground, refused to send the statements that he

2 obtained with Mara Pilipovic underground, he refused to

3 send them to the Tribunal.

4 Q. Did you speak face to face with this source

5 within the State Security Service?

6 A. Yes. This is a very important individual,

7 and I could not but believe him because he had no

8 personal reasons whatsoever to speak otherwise of these

9 questions. Several people would be arrested some day,

10 and this proved to be true, and these people that

11 Mr. Tadic mentioned, indeed, were arrested afterwards.

12 Q. Were you satisfied that your source within

13 the security service was a source independent of

14 Mr. Tadic himself?

15 A. I was not satisfied to have heard such

16 things, but I trusted my source. I did not pay him.

17 He was not motivated to sell information to me, as is

18 done, for example, in Western countries, for example,

19 in the United States of America and in other countries

20 where journalists pay people for providing

21 information. He gave me information free of charge,

22 running the risk that I might tell someone who told me

23 all of this, and perhaps this would entail grave

24 consequences for him. So this was a risk that he did

25 run.

Page 660

1 Q. Did you ever see anything in writing at all

2 when you had a conversation or conversations with this,

3 as you say, high-up source within the security service?

4 A. He had a file, he had papers, but I trusted

5 him. I did not ask him to have a look myself at these

6 papers because, after all, how should I put this, he

7 could have written these statements himself. I don't

8 know how these things are done, but I trusted him. In

9 such affairs, you either have to trust a person or

10 not.

11 Q. Had you had conversations on other occasions

12 with this individual, I don't mean about Mr. Tadic, but

13 had you had conversations with this individual on other

14 occasions where he had given you information?

15 A. Yes, yes, and quite a few articles --

16 Q. Did that information that he'd given you on

17 other occasions ever prove to be wrong or unreliable?

18 A. No. No, otherwise, I would not have used

19 him, no. No one in the state that I come from could

20 believe how come I came to receive such information.

21 They thought that I was in the employ of foreign

22 intelligence services, that I was working for some

23 foreign agency or for the KGB or whoever.

24 Q. Are you able to give any specific example,

25 Mr. Brkic, of how it was that Mr. Vujin undermined the

Page 661

1 defence of Mr. Tadic before the International Criminal

2 Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia?

3 A. Mr. Tadic, as he was defending himself from

4 the accusations brought against him, asked his defence

5 attorney to go to the places where he had allegedly

6 committed crimes and to talk to other people who could

7 testify on his behalf and who could prove that he had

8 not committed the crimes that he was charged with

9 having committed. Mr. Vujin had also employed Mara

10 Pilipovic from his office, and she talked to persons

11 who could have testified on his behalf in his defence,

12 and they could have refuted this thesis, that he had

13 committed crimes. I think that this was Mr. Simo

14 Drlaca, and it was his operations in that part of

15 Republika Srpska that were supposed to be concealed.

16 Q. Who was doing the concealing?

17 A. Well, Mr. Vujin had statements made by

18 various persons and also the notes made by his

19 assistant, Mr. Mara Pilipovic, but he did not inform

20 Mr. Tadic about this and he did not intend to present

21 this in court so that the Court could have insight into

22 the activities of the accused and other persons who at

23 that time were in the territory where these operations

24 were conducted or, rather, where there was a conflict,

25 a war, a civil war.

Page 662

1 Q. Please stop me if I am overstating the case,

2 but does it come to this: An effort was made if

3 Mr. Tadic's defence might have involved other people as

4 yet undetected being named and being put at risk of

5 arrest and prosecution themselves --

6 A. Yes, that's right. Yes, it boils down to

7 that.

8 Q. -- that their existence or their names would

9 be concealed even at the expense of putting forward

10 Mr. Tadic's own personal defence in its best possible

11 light?

12 A. Yes. An effort was made with regard to the

13 persons who were much, much higher up in the hierarchy

14 than Mr. Tadic, that they should not be detected

15 because they could bring down with them the leadership

16 of the so-called Republika Srpska or of Yugoslavia,

17 according to the principle of command responsibility.

18 Q. From what you understood and your information

19 from the source you've mentioned high up in the

20 security service, what, if any, consideration was given

21 by Mr. Vujin to Mr. Tadic's own interests as an accused

22 person before this Tribunal?

23 A. Well, he showed consideration to the

24 assignment and task that he was given, that is to say,

25 that Mr. Tadic in his statements, both to the

Page 663

1 investigators and before the Tribunal, should not

2 expand the list of people responsible for what had

3 happened in the region of Bosnia-Herzegovina and the

4 territory of the Republika Srpska.

5 Q. Let me put it this way: From the information

6 that you saw and heard from this source, was Mr. Vujin

7 representing Mr. Tadic to the best of his ability, or

8 was Mr. Vujin representing, if I can put it this way,

9 the interests, good or bad, of his state?

10 A. He was not representing the interests of the

11 state but tried to represent the interests of the

12 ruling powers, the regime, the representatives of that

13 state. We know that they are all accused by this

14 Tribunal, stand accused by this Tribunal.

15 Q. If the interests of the regime conflicted

16 with his duty to his client, Mr. Tadic, from the

17 information you received which would come first, the

18 regime or his client, Dusko Tadic?

19 A. The regime, of course.

20 Q. I must ask you this: You have referred to a

21 source or sources of information high up in the

22 security service. You were asked by Their Honours

23 earlier on whether you could, if I can put it bluntly,

24 name names.

25 I'm conscious, of course, that this court is

Page 664

1 in public and in open session. May I be permitted to

2 put it this way, and it would not be my decision, it

3 would be a decision for Their Honours: If this court

4 were to go into closed session and you were permitted

5 to write a name or names on a piece of paper to be

6 shown to Their Honours, would you consider, Mr. Brkic,

7 would you consider putting on a piece of paper the name

8 or names of your source, sources high up in the secret

9 service?

10 A. If that paper is accessible to Mr. Vujin,

11 then I would be signing the death sentence for those

12 people, the people whose names I can write down. If

13 you think you can bear them on your conscience, then I

14 will do so, I mean, the Tribunal.

15 I hope that the Honourable Tribunal will bear

16 in mind the fact of the country that I live in and that

17 the key people within that state, within that country,

18 occupying the top posts are accused of the worst crimes

19 committed in the history of humankind, and you're

20 asking me to do something that places me in a very,

21 very difficult situation, to be responsible for the

22 lives of people, for the life of a man.

23 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Are you pressing this

24 point, Mr. Abell?

25 MR. ABELL: I'm going to pass the buck, if I

Page 665

1 may be rude, to Your Honours. If Your Honours wish to

2 go into closed session. It's a matter for Your

3 Honours. We've heard the evidence of this gentleman as

4 to why he feels he cannot unless very special

5 circumstances apply. It would mean certain parties but

6 not all parties in these proceedings seeing those

7 names.

8 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Now, the court would

9 feel safer to be guided by the counsel who is examining

10 the witness.

11 MR. ABELL: I'm not going to press it.

12 Q. One last topic, Mr. Brkic. You mentioned

13 earlier, in answer to me, about people higher up who

14 needed to be protected. Did your source high up in the

15 secret service, in the regime, did he indicate any

16 names of individuals, however high up in the chain of

17 things, who needed to be protected in this case?

18 A. I think they were people who were -- Momir

19 Talic, Mr. Brdjanin, and some other individuals who

20 have not been imprisoned yet and the first who already

21 have. So I don't want to incriminate them.

22 Q. I'm not going to press that aspect any

23 further. Mr. Brkic, I don't have, thank you very much,

24 any further questions for you. Thank you. Would you

25 wait there, please?

Page 666

1 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Mr. Keegan?

2 Questioned by Mr. Keegan:

3 Q. Thank you Your Honour. Mr. Brkic, to assist

4 you in framing your answers, the time period, the

5 relevant time period that we're concerned with for

6 these proceedings is September of 1997 to April 1998.

7 When I'm speaking or asking you questions, I'm

8 referring to what you may have known during that -- or

9 become aware of events that occurred during that time

10 period.

11 You refer to, just to go back to the last

12 section of questions asked by Mr. Abell, your

13 Exhibit 10, which is your statement of 18 February,

14 1999, the fact that that Mr. Vujin controlled

15 evidence. What evidence that you know of did he

16 control and when was that?

17 A. Mr. Vujin, in talks with his client,

18 Mr. Tadic, acquired knowledge of what kind of direct

19 knowledge his client had that took place in the events

20 for which Mr. Tadic stands accused. He asked that his

21 Defence counsel go and ascertain who was in command in

22 the area, in command of the units, the police, the

23 army, who had command responsibility in the crisis

24 staffs, who could have committed a crime, who could

25 have committed ethnic cleansing or transfer of the

Page 667

1 population.

2 So Mr. Tadic, as a direct participant and

3 somebody from the area, knew by name the people who,

4 during that period of his indictment, were in the area

5 at that time, and he asked that his Defence counsel

6 should check this out and said that he, of course, did

7 not commit the crime that he committed.

8 Mr. Vujin, with his associate from his

9 office, Mara Pilipovic, he entrusted her as his

10 investigator and she would go to the area to talk to

11 the people named by Mr. Tadic himself.

12 Q. All of these specific areas which Mr. Tadic

13 advised Mr. Vujin to investigate, you learned all of

14 these specific questions from your source in the SDB?

15 A. Yes. Yes, yes. He did not, of course, say

16 whether everything that Mr. Tadic said was correct,

17 that is to say, in the sense that he wasn't at such a

18 place at such a time, but what was the defence, the

19 overall defence of Mr. Tadic and which could have

20 compromised others and possibly bring -- throw doubt,

21 cast doubt on the participation of Mr. Tadic. That

22 evidence did not turn up before the Tribunal or before

23 Mr. Tadic, as the accused, as evidence in his favour.

24 Q. Did your source from the SDB tell you how he

25 became aware of these very particular instructions that

Page 668

1 Mr. Tadic had given to Mr. Vujin?

2 A. Mr. Vujin, as a lawyer who did not recognise

3 the competencies of the International Tribunal, had

4 strong contacts with the state police, with the secret

5 police, and so in his work and presence at this

6 Tribunal he, of course, wrote reports about that, and

7 his contacts with the accused, the judges, the lawyers

8 and so on. Everything was recorded in detail so that

9 our police, that is to say, the police in Serbia, had

10 insight into what was going on at the Tribunal.

11 Q. You also say that, in your statement,

12 Mr. Vujin manipulated the evidence. What specific

13 instances are you aware of that he manipulated

14 particular evidence and when would that have occurred?

15 A. The man from the State Security Service that

16 I talked to gave the assessment that on the basis of

17 what he had before him, Mr. Vujin had been given a task

18 and that he was fulfilling it very well, and that the

19 evidence which would incriminate other people and which

20 would throw doubt on the indictment of Mr. Tadic

21 generally, then Mr. Vujin did away with that evidence.

22 I was not personally interested in

23 Mr. Tadic's case and people indicted for crimes, war

24 crimes. I would just like the Tribunal to pass

25 sentence as soon as possible, and I can't believe that

Page 669

1 they're so slow in doing so for people that are accused

2 of murdering hundreds of people.

3 So I personally wasn't interested to ask why,

4 what witness and so on, because I would show a lack of

5 trust towards the individual that was giving me this

6 information. So I just heard his assessments and the

7 information that he gave, and I took them to be

8 absolutely correct but I did not enter into detail.

9 As I say, I wasn't personally interested in

10 Mr. Tadic's case in particular. He was accused of war

11 crimes, and I was sure that the Tribunal would reach a

12 judgement in the case.

13 What I want to say, I did not take the

14 testimonies of one witness or another witness. I

15 didn't go into details, into any complete details

16 because, as I say, it was an individual who wielded

17 considerable influence and perhaps even decide on

18 whether Mr. Vujin was to go ahead with his job or not.

19 Q. So I take it then that your source in the SDB

20 did not explain to you what the contents of any of

21 these statements were that Mr. Vujin and his associates

22 took, so you have no idea whether, in fact, they would

23 have helped Mr. Tadic or hurt Mr. Tadic and his

24 defence?

25 A. Well, at all events, it wouldn't have made it

Page 670

1 more difficult for him to defend himself because

2 following some logics, Mr. Tadic would not have

3 proposed somebody to be heard and to testify who would

4 testify against him.

5 So as I say, had I insisted, I could have

6 obtained details, but as I personally was not

7 interested in the case, then I was not interested in

8 the details. I didn't want to burden myself with such

9 names as Mita Mitrovic, just to quote an ad hoc

10 example. I believed the man who was providing me with

11 this information, because I considered him to be in the

12 very peaks of the security service and that he was in

13 charge of this operation, working with the lawyers, and

14 that the information that he was giving me was, in

15 fact, absolutely truthful.

16 So in simplified terms, he told me that

17 Mr. Vujin -- the evidence that Mara Filipovic had

18 collected, his investigator, which indicated that other

19 people had committed crimes in the area during the time

20 of the indictment and for which Mr. Tadic was accused,

21 that the reports and statements of those witnesses were

22 given neither to Mr. Tadic nor to the Tribunal.

23 Q. Did you ever take it upon yourself to review

24 the evidence actually submitted by Mr. Vujin in the

25 Tadic case to determine if, in fact, he had submitted

Page 671

1 information which implicated others?

2 A. I do not know how Mr. Vujin -- in which way

3 he defended Mr. Tadic and what evidence he submitted to

4 the Tribunal, but I know that the security service has

5 control over Mr. Vujin, and I was informed by the man

6 there that Mr. Vujin had been given instructions to do

7 away with that evidence.

8 MR. KEEGAN: No further questions. Thank

9 you.

10 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Thank you, Mr. Keegan.

11 Mr. Domazet?

12 MR. DOMAZET: Thank you, Your Honour. Your

13 Honours, I'm going to pose my questions in Serbian,

14 because I think that that will facilitate matters both

15 because of the witness and for purposes of the

16 interpretation as well, because they had some problems

17 when I was speaking French earlier on today.

18 Questioned by Mr. Domazet:

19 Q. Can you tell me please, Mr. Brkic, in what

20 way you came to be a witness in this case, through your

21 own initiative or through somebody else's initiative?

22 A. I was invited one day by a lawyer. I think I

23 saw his name here somewhere. Vladimir Bosovic, that

24 was the man. He called me and asked me -- he told me

25 that he had read my text from the Srpska Rec, and he

Page 672

1 asked me how far it had gone with regard to the

2 charge.

3 I told him that -- of the court where the

4 proceedings were going. I photocopied the charge

5 brought by Mr. Toma Fila, and the judgement of the

6 court, and the district court abolishing the charge,

7 and the instructions given to the court of the first

8 instance in its decision-making, and in that talk he

9 told me that he was -- had been engaged by the defence

10 counsel of Mr. Tadic to study the allegations made in

11 the text with regard to the previous activities of

12 Mr. Vujin, his professional activities, and he asked me

13 to -- whether I would be ready to answer some of his

14 questions.

15 I answered -- he sent me his questions in

16 writing, and I responded to those questions in

17 writing.

18 Q. Was it a case of the evidence that we had

19 here today, Exhibits 9 and 10?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. Can you tell us, please, Mr. Brkic, how long

22 you have been a journalist? When did you start working

23 as a journalist? I suppose you're a journalist today.

24 A. I started working in 1978. I got a job as a

25 journalist for the first time in 1978.

Page 673

1 Q. Can you tell us what schooling you've had?

2 A. I have graduated from the faculty of

3 mathematics, but I don't know if the State Security

4 Service gave you other information about me.

5 Q. Today you testified that there were 570

6 charges brought against you in courts in Yugoslavia,

7 against you.

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. Does that also refer to charges brought

10 against you and the papers you work for?

11 A. No, only against myself.

12 Q. So exclusively against you yourself?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. Both in civil actions and in criminal

15 actions?

16 A. Yes.

17 Q. Of those actions, how many have been

18 completed up till today?

19 A. Well, I think that five are still ongoing,

20 that judgments are pending in five cases.

21 Q. You said that in only one case you were

22 proclaimed guilty, that is to say, you had to pay a

23 fine, if I recall correctly.

24 What about all the other cases? Were you

25 also -- were you found not guilty? Were the charges

Page 674

1 rejected, dismissed?

2 A. Well, they were either dismissed -- in five

3 cases the proceedings were interrupted because they

4 were outdated and abolished by the higher courts, and

5 in the meantime, the passage of time, that is to say,

6 four years had gone by, and they were discontinued as

7 outdated.

8 Q. So at this point in time, there are only five

9 cases that are ongoing; is that correct?

10 A. Yes.

11 Q. Did you regularly go to court when you were

12 called up, for the most part?

13 A. Yes. On a regular basis I went when I was

14 called. It's rather a large number.

15 Q. Well, that is why I have asked you the

16 question, because it would appear that you appear in

17 court every week.

18 A. Well, I did not turn up for a court hearing

19 on one occasion and I was fined by a judge.

20 Q. Mr. Brkic, you told us that the individual

21 that gave you the information in the State Security

22 Service, that you saw a list of Yugoslav lawyers,

23 Serbian lawyers compiled by the bar association as

24 defence counsel for The Hague.

25 Do you recall how many lawyers were on that

Page 675

1 list?

2 A. Well, that event took place five years ago, a

3 little over four years, in actual fact, and I think I

4 stipulate them all in the text, that is to say, the

5 more important names, the ones that I thought would

6 play the major role. I stipulated them in the text and

7 they, in fact, did appear as defence counsel.

8 Q. Well, how many lawyers were on the list all

9 in all if you remember?

10 A. Well, I think about 13 or 14.

11 Q. Do you now recall the lawyers that were

12 concerned?

13 A. Well, I stipulate this in my text.

14 Q. What about the other lawyers on the list?

15 A. Well, they're probably waiting. There will

16 be other accused.

17 Q. No. What I mean is did that same source tell

18 that you these people were working for the security

19 service as well?

20 A. Well, as to their daily activities, I wasn't

21 really interested in them because there are other

22 affairs that I deal with. I can't ask them all the

23 time what their informers are doing. I'm not a clerk

24 for relationships between the source and the

25 informers.

Page 676

1 Q. As far as I was able to understand, you

2 received all this information from one individual in

3 the State Security Service echelons?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. When we're talking about Mr. Vujin, you said

6 today that you saw him personally and talked to him

7 personally and that your relations were good.

8 A. Well, I said that our relations were

9 correct. That is to say, we have no conflicting

10 interests.

11 Q. In your letter which is Exhibit 10, under

12 item 1, towards the end of item 1, we have your

13 statement that you don't know Mr. Vujin personally and

14 that you were not in contact and not in conflict.

15 Q. Well, as I say, I met him once in

16 Mr. Guberina's office. He was there with Mara

17 Pilipovic. We were introduced there but we didn't

18 discuss anything that could compromise our relations on

19 the occasion.

20 Q. But you wrote that you did not know him

21 personally and that you had no contacts with him.

22 A. Well, I assessed that relationship as -- by

23 virtue of the fact that we did not have any business

24 relations and he just happened to be in Mr. Guberina's

25 office on the occasion.

Page 677

1 Q. When did that meeting take place?

2 A. I think it was four years previous to the

3 event. That is to say, it would be sometime in 1990,

4 1991.

5 Q. So in the same section you state that

6 Mr. Vujin did not rebut any of the texts in which he

7 was mentioned by you. However, today you said

8 precisely that Mr. Vujin is one of the accusers in the

9 1995 charge brought against you for the article.

10 A. Yes, he is accusing, but the paper would have

11 denied this and the paper would have said that the

12 quotations were not correct.

13 Well, he did not accuse me, he accused the

14 paper, and if somebody thinks he has been slandered,

15 then the natural thing to do would be for the paper to

16 publish a denial. That is the easiest way in which an

17 injustice can be corrected, but as you can see, the

18 proceedings are ongoing today.

19 Q. The paper Srpska Rec, did it publish a

20 denial?

21 A. Yes. This is regulated bylaw. If there is

22 no denial, then the court can order it.

23 Q. Yes. I know the legal provisions, but I'm

24 asking you whether your newspaper published any

25 denials.

Page 678

1 A. Well, I'm not the editor in chief and have

2 nothing to do with the editorial policies of my

3 newspaper. So as denials and the way in which they are

4 published are regulated by law, then the length of the

5 denial must be directly proportionate to the article

6 published. You are a lawyer and you know the rules and

7 regulations governing that and the fines that a

8 magistrate can enforce. All of that is regulated by

9 law.

10 Q. That's precisely why I'm asking you this

11 question, Mr. Brkic, because Srpska Rec refused to

12 publish a denial and that is why charges were brought

13 against it. Do you know anything about that?

14 A. Well, as I say, I am not the editor in chief

15 of the Srpska Rec newspaper, and whether the editor

16 refused to publish a denial -- the newspaper carries 50

17 texts every time, which means that there are many

18 individuals quoted for different things in the articles

19 published. Now, whether the Srpska Rec newspaper

20 published any denials or not, as far as I know, it did

21 publish readers' letters, the letters of readers, and

22 these reactions by the public were published if their

23 contents were in order. You would have to ask the

24 editor in chief of Srpska Rec because I, as a

25 journalist, cannot decide on what is to be published in

Page 679

1 the newspaper and what is not.

2 Q. Do you recall being a witness in a case of

3 this kind, that is to say, when charges were brought

4 against the Srpska Rec, when denials were not published

5 and it was a case of one of your articles? Do you

6 remember?

7 A. Yes, I do.

8 Q. Do you remember which case it was?

9 A. It was the case of Mrs. Borka Vucic.

10 Q. Do you know how the case ended?

11 A. No, I do not. I know that the proceedings

12 were ongoing and that Mrs. Vucic, who was an individual

13 whom -- the international community forbade her to

14 leave the country because she is the personal banker of

15 Mr. Milosevic, and she is responsible for many millions

16 that were looted, and she is one of the basic criminals

17 that jeopardised the vital interests of the people and

18 country that I live in. She brought charges against

19 me, that is to say, she brought charges against the

20 newspaper Srpska Rec, and these proceedings are being

21 tended by the Ana Popovic chamber in the court in

22 Belgrade and have not been concluded, and I say this

23 with full responsibility. You can check this out, you

24 can check out the case that exists, but a judgement has

25 not been made yet.

Page 680

1 Q. Mr. Brkic --

2 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Mr. Domazet?

3 MR. DOMAZET: Yes.

4 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: May I suggest that you ask

5 your last question for this afternoon? One of our

6 colleagues has another judicial appointment, and so we

7 have to conclude at about now.

8 MR. DOMAZET: Thank you, Your Honour. My

9 last question --

10 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: I'm not suggesting you

11 should terminate your examination, but just for today.

12 MR. DOMAZET: Yes, I understand very well,

13 Your Honour.

14 Q. My last question, Mr. Brkic: Unfortunately,

15 what you have just said is not true.

16 A. I leave it to the Court to assess.

17 Q. The Court shall assess it, and that

18 particular case, those particular proceedings that you

19 mentioned with Mrs. Borka Vucic, have been ended, and a

20 judgement was made by the district court in Belgrade

21 and the Supreme Court of Serbia, and Srpska Rec,

22 because of your alleged interviews with Mrs. Vucic, was

23 found guilty. It states that you thought up three

24 interviews with Mrs. Vucic, and it was proven that you

25 never saw Mrs. Vucic, nor could you have ever talked to

Page 681

1 her, and you published three interviews which had been

2 judged invented by you, and I am going to hand over to

3 the Tribunal this as evidence.

4 A. May I answer those allegations?

5 Q. You can see this, this evidence, this proof,

6 if you so desire.

7 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Do you want to answer?

8 A. Yes. Your Honours, the judgement that

9 Mr. Vujin's counsel is giving you was brought for

10 corrections, and in that case, it is not up to the

11 court to determine the truthfulness of the allegations

12 but whether there were valid circumstances for the text

13 to be published, that is to say, whether the text was

14 signed by an individual to whom the information refers,

15 whether the text is equal in length or proportionate in

16 length, and you will be able to see that the court

17 orders Srpska Rec to publish denials. It does not

18 enter into the fact of whether it was true or not.

19 This is done in criminal proceedings, that is to say,

20 whether the allegations and quotations were correct or

21 not, and this is a criminal proceeding, but in the

22 civil proceedings, in the civil reports, this is a

23 different matter, and that they cause psychological

24 damage to the individual concerned.

25 I'm sure that in reading the documents, you

Page 682

1 will be able to see that the court is merely

2 ascertaining whether conditions have been met for a

3 denial to be published and whether this particular lady

4 has the right to a published denial.

5 We live in a country in which key individuals

6 have been accused of war crimes, amongst them judges,

7 and most judges have been denied the right to leave the

8 country. As I live in a country where there are no

9 independent courts of law, then how could I have won

10 these cases?

11 So I should like to ask you to read the

12 documents carefully, and what counsel has just stated

13 is incorrect.

14 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Have you seen the

15 document, Mr. Brkic?

16 A. Yes. Yes, it is not a question of criminal

17 liability. They are separate proceedings which --

18 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: No. I'm asking you

19 whether you have seen the document.

20 A. Yes, I know what he's talking about.

21 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Mr. Registrar, are you

22 marking them?

23 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, I have marked them, Your

24 Honour. The first document of the 29th of April, 1998

25 will be Exhibit 12, and the second document under the

Page 683

1 heading "Gz. 82/97" will be Exhibit 13.

2 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Any objections to

3 admission? Then the documents are admitted.

4 The Court will now rise until 10.00 tomorrow

5 when we shall resume. Thank you.

6 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at

7 4.07 p.m., to be reconvened on

8 Wednesday, the 1st day of September,

9 1999, at 10 a.m.

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