1 Tuesday, 6 April 2004
2 [Status Conference]
3 [Open session]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.06 a.m.
5 [The accused entered court]
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Madam Registrar, will you call
7 the case, please.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honour. Good morning, Your Honour.
9 This is the case Number IT-97-25/1-PT, The Prosecutor versus Mitar
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Madam Registrar.
12 Could the representatives of the Prosecution introduce themselves,
14 MR. SMITH: Good morning, Your Honours. Bill Smith with Christine
15 Moeller and Diane Boles for the Prosecution.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you.
17 And for the Defence, please.
18 MR. DOMAZET: [Interpretation] Your Honour, Vladimir Domazet, lead
19 counsel representing the accused Mitar Rasevic.
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you. The Chamber good
21 morning to all those present, representatives of the OTP, the Defence
22 counsel, the accused, as well as all the staff of this courtroom,
23 Madam Registrar, the legal counsellor, Mr. Usher, the court reporters, as
24 well as the interpreters working in their booths.
25 As you are aware, we are here to attend a Status Conference, the
1 last Status Conference having been held more than three months ago. And
2 pursuant to the Rules of Procedure and Evidence, we have to hold a Status
3 Conference every 120 days. And it is within that framework that we are
4 holding this Status Conference.
5 Its aim is to consider a series of matters. Those matters were
6 referred to yesterday during the pre-trial meeting held in the presence of
7 the legal officer who reported to me the substance of the meeting held
8 yesterday. So I should like now to review the points we have on our
9 agenda and that refer to the state of affairs in the proceedings.
10 First of all, I should like to address the accused -- I'm sorry,
11 the Prosecution to see how they stand regarding Rule 66(A)(i) and
12 66(A)(ii) regarding the disclosure of written statements of witnesses, and
13 the 92 bis statements. Could the Prosecution, please, inform me of the
14 progress made with respect to the disclosure of those documents.
15 MR. SMITH: Thank you, Your Honour. In relation to disclosure at
16 this stage, Your Honour, the Prosecution has substantially complied with
17 its obligations. As Your Honour is aware, the Prosecution has supplied
18 the Defence the supporting material back in October 2003. That supporting
19 material contained about 47 witness statements, of which the Prosecution
20 would be largely relying on at this stage as witnesses that would be
21 presented if this matter comes to trial.
22 In addition to that, the Prosecution supplied the Defence the open
23 transcripts of the case of the Prosecutor against Krnojelac which was
24 heard at this Tribunal. And as Your Honour is aware, that case is
25 substantially the same case in terms of the crime base that this accused
1 is facing. The witnesses that we called in that case, again, would
2 largely be the same witnesses that we would call in this case. So until
3 such time that the decision on the amended indictment is handed down, the
4 Prosecution at this stage feels it can't do too much more to refine what
5 would be its witness list and the relationships with the Defence counsel,
6 Mr. Domazet, have been quite good. And we have agreed that after the
7 decision of the amended indictment has been handed down, that we would
8 meet comprehensively together, after he has spoken to the accused, and
9 determine what facts may be agreed, what facts would be in dispute. And
10 therefore, we could refine and add to our witness list based on that.
11 Regarding Rule 68, most of the material -- all of the material
12 that the Prosecution is aware of that would fall under Rule 68 has been
13 supplied to the Defence. And it's been supplied in the form of the
14 supporting material, those 47 witness statements, and in relation to the
15 trial testimony in the case of Prosecutor versus Krnojelac. Now, the
16 Defence has been supplied with the Defence testimony as well, and there is
17 some Rule 68 material amongst all of that.
18 As far as it was raised yesterday by the Defence that at this
19 stage he hasn't got the full names of the witnesses of which we've
20 supplied and the statements to him, and it's agreed that the statements
21 have been supplied under pseudonyms, as pseudonyms were given in the
22 previous case. The Prosecutor would be making application to have those
23 pseudonyms lifted for the limited purpose to supply the identity of the
24 witnesses to the Defence. But obviously, not to the public at large. And
25 the Prosecution has made an undertaking to do that in the next few weeks
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 so that the accused can -- it can assist the accused in preparing his
2 Defence. Thank you.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you for the explanations
4 given regarding the disclosure in accordance with Rule 66 and 68.
5 Mr. Domazet, do you share the optimism of the Prosecution
6 regarding disclosure, or do you have any reservations or any difficulties?
7 I give you the floor.
8 MR. DOMAZET: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I have no
9 particular problems to raise. Everything said by my learned friend
10 Mr. Smith stands, and I confirm it. I have indeed received the 47 witness
11 statements. The only problem that we raised yesterday was that I don't
12 have the names of the witnesses, but I will have them in about two weeks'
13 time, so there's no problem there either. So there's really no problems
14 on the part of the Defence.
15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Domazet.
16 MR. DOMAZET: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] As you know, there is a decision
18 that needs to be rendered regarding the indictment, which was the subject
19 of several motions. And perhaps by the end of the week we will be
20 rendering our decision. So you will have the ruling of the Chamber
21 regarding the indictment, which will allow you to make further progress in
22 disclosing documents and material.
23 Regarding the communication to the Defence of the names of
24 witnesses heard in the Krnojelac case under pseudonym, of course that
25 question can be very easily resolved. Of course, the Defence needs to
1 know the identity of those witnesses.
2 I would also like to draw the attention of the parties to the fact
3 that as you know, the Rules of Procedure and Evidence envisage that the
4 parties may agree on certain facts or on points of law. Therefore, I
5 would like to encourage the parties to address those matters which would
6 enable us to gain time.
7 Regarding the Prosecution's standpoint, there would be about 47
8 witnesses who would be called for the trial. This is an approximate
9 figure, which seems to me a very reasonable number. If we don't encounter
10 any other difficulties, we could envisage the following schedule: I am
11 counting on holding the next Status Conference at the beginning of July,
12 because as you know August is the court recess time. So we can't have a
13 hearing in August. But at the beginning of July, the 7th or the 8th of
14 July, we will hold a Status Conference. And then comes July, August,
15 September, and in the last trimester, that is mid-September, if everything
16 goes well, we can envisage the Pre-Trial Conference so as to enable the
17 very expeditious hearing of this case, unless there are any new
18 difficulties that may crop up. So that would be the schedule planned
19 which we should be able to observe without any difficulty, both by the
20 Prosecution and the Defence.
21 There's also another matter that was raised, and that is that the
22 accused, Mr. Rasevic, would like to have a personal lawyer that he knows,
23 and that is Mr. Prodanovic. As this request was made, the question was
24 left on standby regarding this lawyer. And according to what I have been
25 told, it appears that that lawyer cannot unfortunately for Mr. Rasevic
1 assist him as there was a decision taken with regard to him in the
2 meantime. Due to that, Mr. Domazet, you are the designated counsel for
3 the accused. So it appears that this matter of Defence counsel has been
4 resolved by a decision made a few hours ago.
5 I have another point to address on the agenda; that is, the health
6 and conditions of detention for Mr. Rasevic. So can you stand, please,
7 Mr. Rasevic, and tell me in your own language whether you have any
8 particular health problems.
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I have no health
10 problems whatsoever. And as regards the Detention Unit and the behaviour
11 of detention personnel and the other detainees, everything is absolutely
12 in order. Everything is fine.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. So you have no
14 remarks to make regarding your health or conditions of detention. Is that
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] No, I have nothing to say.
17 Everything is absolutely fine.
18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Thank you. You may
19 be seated.
20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I have raised the various items
22 of our agenda. Has the Defence any other matters or points to make which
23 we could discuss at this stage? Mr. Domazet, I give you the floor.
24 MR. DOMAZET: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour. We have nothing to
25 add. Thank you.
1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you.
2 And the Prosecution, do you have any questions to raise that were
3 not included in the agenda?
4 MR. SMITH: Nothing further. Thank you, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. The expeditiousness
6 of this hearing testifies to the fact the proceedings are on a good path.
7 I have referred to a decision that will be made shortly regarding the
8 indictment. And as I indicated, we will have a Status Conference at the
9 beginning of July, and I hope that the Prosecution will be in a position
10 to prepare the proper conditions for the Pre-Trial Conference and the
11 trial itself. So I cannot tell you exactly the date for the beginning of
12 trial because as you know, this Tribunal works in three courtrooms which
13 are more or less all busy by the current trials. There's some trials that
14 are on standby, and they will be added to the schedule in due course. And
15 that is the information I'm able to give you today.
16 Thank you. And I invite you to come back at the beginning of
17 July. In the meantime, the legal officer of this Chamber will, in
18 accordance with the rules of procedure, have a meeting with you. Should
19 there be any difficulties, please do not hesitate to inform me about them.
20 Thank you.
21 --- Whereupon the Status Conference adjourned
22 at 9.24 a.m.