1 Wednesday, 25 August 2010
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.13 a.m.
5 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. Good everybody in
6 and around the courtroom. This is case IT-08-91-T, the Prosecutor versus
7 Mico Stanisic and Stojan Zupljanin.
8 JUDGE HALL: Thank you, Mr. Registrar.
9 Good morning to everyone. May we have the appearances, please.
10 MR. OLMSTED: Good morning, Your Honours. Matthew Olmsted,
11 Tom Hannis, and Crispian Smith for the Prosecution.
12 MR. ZECEVIC: Good morning, Your Honours. Slobodan Zecevic,
13 Slobodan Cvijetic, Eugene O'Sullivan, and Ms. Tatjana Savic, appearing
14 for Stanisic Defence today.
15 MR. KRGOVIC: Good morning, Your Honours. Dragan Krgovic,
16 Igor Pantelic, and our new colleague, Aleksandar Aleksic, legal
18 JUDGE HALL: If there are no housekeeping or other preliminary
19 matters -- yes, Mr. Olmsted.
20 MR. OLMSTED: Yes, Your Honours, just one if I may, and it is
21 with regards to the next witness.
22 Yesterday we received a joint response from the Defence with
23 regard to the Prosecution's motion for leave to amend its Rule 65 ter
24 exhibit list to add three documents for the purposes of ST-023's
25 testimony. Since this witness may testify as soon as this Friday, we ask
1 that we just give a brief reply here today with regard to one of the
2 issues that the Defence raised in their response, if I may.
3 JUDGE HALL: You propose to do that now?
4 MR. OLMSTED: Yes, Your Honours, it will take literally two
6 JUDGE HALL: Yes. Can I have a moment, please.
7 [Trial Chamber and Legal Officers confer]
8 JUDGE HALL: Yes, Mr. Olmsted, you may proceed. Thank you.
9 MR. OLMSTED: Thank you, Your Honour.
10 And this is with regard to paragraph 5 of the joint response,
11 where the Defence argue that there's no need to add these three documents
12 to the Prosecution's exhibit list because the witness can provide oral
13 testimony with regard to the matters covered by those documents. These
14 particular documents are payroll records and, as this Trial Chamber has
15 seen, with other witnesses and other payroll records they are quite
16 extensive in the number of names and other information contained upon
17 them. As a time-saving measure, the Prosecution has taken the approach
18 that rather than going through every single name on a payroll list that
19 the witness simply confirms that the list is accurate with regard to that
20 organisation or unit. Otherwise, it would require the Prosecution to go
21 name by name and that probably wouldn't serve any purpose.
22 Secondly, at this stage, the Prosecution doesn't know whether the
23 Defence challenges the evidence contained within these documents, and, of
24 course, these documents are corroborative of the evidence of the witness
25 and, therefore, it does serve a purpose beyond the witness's oral
2 Now, of course, the witness is going to be proofed. He hasn't
3 been shown these documents. He will be shown them during proofing and if
4 he is able to authentic them or verify them, then, of course, we would
5 proceed with showing him during his testimony for that limited purpose.
6 And with that, the Prosecution, again, requests that the Trial
7 Chamber grant its motion to add these three documents to its exhibit
9 JUDGE HALL: Thank you, Mr. Olmsted.
10 MR. ZECEVIC: I'm sorry, Your Honours, there is a matter before
11 the witness is brought in to court.
12 I sent yesterday afternoon around 5.00 p.m. an information by
13 mail to legal officers and my friends from the Prosecutor's office,
14 informing the parties that the -- the Stanisic Defence will seek to add
15 additional time to cross-examination of this witness. And I don't know
16 if Your Honours would like to hear me now on that, or after the witness
17 finishes his direct.
18 Also in that -- in that mail, I -- I informed Trial Chamber that
19 I'm afraid that due to these circumstances, I will not be able to -- to
20 argue the exhumations on Thursday but on Friday only as originally
22 [Trial Chamber confers]
23 JUDGE HALL: We've seen the -- your note, Mr. Zecevic.
24 MR. ZECEVIC: Thank you, Your Honours.
25 [Trial Chamber confers]
1 JUDGE HALL: Sorry, could you remind me as to how much additional
2 time you had -- I know it's a total of four hours.
3 MR. ZECEVIC: Yes, Your Honours, I made a mistake. For some
4 reason I thought that we had now estimated two hours but we estimated
5 three hours, so I'm asking for an additional hour, yes.
6 JUDGE HALL: To deal with these additional documents?
7 MR. ZECEVIC: That is correct, Your Honour.
8 JUDGE HALL: Yes.
9 [Trial Chamber confers]
10 JUDGE HALL: Granted as prayed, Mr. Zecevic.
11 MR. ZECEVIC: Thank you very much. Much appreciated.
12 JUDGE HALL: So, Mr. Olmsted, are you ready to have the usher
13 escort your witness in.
14 MR. OLMSTED: Yes, Your Honour, we're ready for the next witness.
15 [The witness entered court]
16 JUDGE HARHOFF: Good morning to you, sir.
17 Again, good morning, sir.
18 I trust you can hear me in a language you understand?
19 [Technical difficulty]
20 Good morning, sir. I trust with you hear me in a language you
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning. Yes, I can.
23 JUDGE HARHOFF: And thank you for coming to the Tribunal to give
24 your testimony today.
25 I will begin by asking you to read out the solemn declaration.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
2 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
3 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you, sir. You may sit down.
4 May I begin, first of all, sir, to ask you to state your name and
5 your date of birth and your place of birth.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] My name is Gojko Vasic. I was born
7 on the 13th of March, 1958, at Gornja Podgora, in the municipality of
8 Mrkonjic Grad.
9 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you, sir. And what's your ethnicity?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm a Serb.
11 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you. And could I ask you what was your
12 occupation in 1992.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Since 1986 I have been with the
14 police, which means that in 1992, also, I worked as a crime police
15 investigator at the SJB of Laktasi.
16 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you.
17 Now, sir, have you ever testified before this Tribunal in any of
18 the cases that are -- have been tried here in this court?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
20 JUDGE HARHOFF: Or have you testified at home in any of the
21 domestic courts on matters related to the conflict in -- in the former
22 Balkan region?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
24 JUDGE HARHOFF: Very well then.
25 Let me then explain to you how the proceedings unfold before this
2 You have been called as a witness for the Prosecution, and I take
3 it that you have already met with the Prosecutor, who is sitting to your
4 right, Mr. Olmsted. He will begin by examining you --
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
6 JUDGE HARHOFF: -- in-chief, and the Prosecution has been granted
7 two hours to complete its examination-in-chief.
8 You are being called under a specific rule in our Rules of
9 Procedure, according to which we seek to expedite the testimony by asking
10 you to confirm that the statements you have previously given to the
11 Prosecution are correct and that you would be willing to give the same
12 answers if you were put the same questions again today. That's the way
13 in which we seek to have these statements tendered into evidence more
14 quickly than we would be able to do if we were to go through them page by
15 page. So if there is any deviance or anything you have to add or to
16 correct in the statements, then make sure that you provide this
17 information to the Court here today.
18 When the Prosecution has completed its examination-in-chief, the
19 counsels for the Defence, Mr. Zecevic for Mr. Mico Stanisic and
20 Counsel Krgovic for the accused Stojan Zupljanin will then begin their
21 cross-examination. Counsel for Mr. Stanisic has asked for three hours
22 for his cross-examination, and counsel for Mr. Zupljanin has asked for
23 one hour. And after that, again, the Prosecution will have the
24 possibility to have a re-direct examination of you in order to finalise
25 some of the questions that were raised in cross-examination.
1 So this will take us through the entire hearing today and
2 probably also tomorrow.
3 At any point the Judges may also put question to you, if there is
4 anything that we need to have clarified as part of your testimony.
5 We normally run the hearings at sessions lasting approximately
6 one hour and a half after which the tapings need to be changed.
7 Everything that goes on here in the courtroom is recorded but the tapes
8 need to be changed, and so every 90 minutes we will have a 20-minute
10 And we will have to adjourn this morning's hearings at 1.45 this
11 afternoon, and then we will resume tomorrow again at 9.00 and run until
13 If at any point you wish to have a break or you need to rest,
14 then please do not hesitate to indicate this to us and we will comply
15 with your requests immediately.
16 Is there any questions you would like to put to the Chamber
17 before we begin?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
19 JUDGE HARHOFF: Very well. Then the only thing I have to do is
20 to remind you that you have given the solemn declaration and that you are
21 therefore required to tell the truth and I should remind that you there
22 is a severe penalty for providing a false or incomplete testimony before
23 this Tribunal.
24 Is that understood?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
1 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you very much, sir.
2 I give the floor to the Prosecution.
3 MR. OLMSTED: Thank you, Your Honour, and just to clarify, my
4 examination will be much closer to half an hour rather than two hours.
5 WITNESS: GOJKO VASIC
6 [Witness answered through interpreter]
7 Examination by Mr. Olmsted:
8 Q. Good morning, Mr. Vasic.
9 A. Good morning.
10 Q. Prior to testifying today, did you have an opportunity to review
11 your written statements from 25 June 2009, 1 April 2010, and 30
12 July 2010?
13 A. Yes, I did.
14 Q. And with regard to the 1 April 2010 statement, did you have some
15 revisions to some of the annexes to that statement, as well as one
16 additional annex?
17 A. The revisions were about some things that weren't precise enough
18 at the outset, such as the log-book of crimes and also regarding the
19 events that were entered from April till December 1992, but those were
20 events that happened earlier; only they were entered later.
21 MR. OLMSTED: Let's have on the screen 65 ter 10406.1 and I ask
22 that this not be published, the reason being as -- at least the first
23 annex mentions some victims of rape crimes, and I wouldn't want that to
24 get beyond this Chamber.
25 And the number again is 10406.1.
1 Q. And we see in the bottom right-hand corner -- we can just have
2 the B/C/S up for now. We will put the English up in a little bit.
3 MR. OLMSTED: But anyway, for purposes for right now, there is --
4 there are English translations of these revised annexes and they have
5 been loaded into e-court this morning, but we'll get them on the screen.
6 But for purposes right now, we don't need to have the English ones
7 necessarily in front of us.
8 What I want the witness to do is -- if he could confirm --
9 Q. Mr. Vasic, the lower right-hand corner it contains your initials
10 and the date; is that correct?
11 A. Yes, it is.
12 Q. And why don't we just quickly flip through these pages and
13 just -- if can you confirm after you have seen them that these are the
14 revisions and the added annex that you made during proofing yesterday.
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. And if we could just flip through to page 3. And page 4.
17 A. Yes. Yes.
18 Q. Page 5.
19 A. Yes. Yes.
20 Q. And page 6.
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Page 7.
23 A. Yes also.
24 Q. And, finally, page 8.
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. I first want to talk about, actually, this last annex that we're
2 looking at right now. Which annex did you add to your statement?
3 A. Knezevo annex or annex 17.
4 Q. And is that a result of your review of the Knezevo police crime
5 register after you completed your April 2010 statement?
6 A. Yes, that's correct.
7 Knezevo was added yesterday, and Kotor Varos was changed earlier,
8 in relation to the number of crimes from April to December and because we
9 have determined that one criminal register or crime register was logged
10 in Kotor Varos actually wasn't devoted to crimes but to work of the
12 Q. And you've already stated that the revisions to the various
13 annexes were primarily to clarify any ambiguities that existed within the
14 annexes; is that correct?
15 A. Yes, that's correct.
16 Q. Do these revisions substantially change or alter your statistical
18 A. Not in their essence. These are just corrections of a minor
20 Q. With these changes to the annex as well as this additional annex
21 for Knezevo, are you satisfied that the information contained in your
22 three statements is accurate and correct?
23 A. Yes, I am.
24 MR. OLMSTED: Your Honours, given the limited the time I have, I
25 wasn't planning on going through each of the revisions to these various
1 annexes as the witness has stated they are minor. They are there to
2 eliminate ambiguities and just to make sure that they're very clear. I
3 will just note that for the record.
4 Q. Mr. Vasic, Could you tell us what your current position is with
5 RS MUP?
6 MR. ZECEVIC: I'm sorry, Your Honours, I am -- I'm in vein here.
7 We received yesterday the revised chart done by this chance. Now, for
8 the first time I understand that one municipality has been added, and
9 I'm -- I'm in no position at this point to identify what are the changes
10 made to the previous. Because the -- the original annex has 17
11 subannexes. This one, the revised annex, I believe has seven. One
12 municipality has been added, which does not appear on the original
13 annexes; that is the municipality of Knezevo, and the -- the six -- the
14 six -- the six municipalities have been revised. I am -- I'm not in a
15 position, at this point, or was able yesterday during the night to
16 identify what are the changes.
17 So, respectively I would ask the Trial Chamber to grant the time
18 to Mr. Olmsted so he can explain us what are the changes and how the
19 changes appeared during the proofing of the witness yesterday.
20 Thank you.
21 JUDGE HALL: Mr. Olmsted, is there a more efficient way of
22 addressing Mr. Zecevic's legitimate concerns --
23 [microphone not activated] that he has proposed?
24 MR. OLMSTED: Yes, Your Honours. We will propose to admit with
25 his 92 ter package the original annexes as well as the revised one and
1 that will allow the Trial Chamber, the Defence, to compare them
2 themselves and see what the changes are. This witness has said that
3 they're minor. They don't have a major impact on his findings, and I
4 think if we went through them one by one it would take a bit of time to
5 do that. I certainly can do that. I'm not sure we'll get any further
6 with that and, of course, the Defence have opportunity during
7 cross-examination to go over any of the revisions with this witness.
8 JUDGE HALL: I take your point, Mr. Olmsted, about the changes
9 being minor. Of course, that's a matter of perception, and Mr. Zecevic,
10 where he would have had an opportunity to compare and contrast himself,
11 may agree with you or he may disagree with you. I'm only wondering
12 whether as a purely practical matter his - and I repeat what I said
13 earlier - his legitimate concern can be addressed.
14 And, Mr. Zecevic, rather than Mr. Olmsted, as you propose, taking
15 the time to go through it, I'm wondering whether the more efficient
16 course might not be for the Chamber to take a slightly extended break
17 between sessions so that either before you begin your cross-examination
18 or during your cross-examination, you have the -- you're in a position to
19 familiarize yourself with the documents.
20 MR. ZECEVIC: It is acceptable for us, that we receive a sort of
21 a longer break before our start of cross-examination and I will be able
22 to identify that.
23 Thank you very much, Your Honours.
24 JUDGE HALL: Please proceed, Mr. Olmsted.
25 MR. OLMSTED: Thank you, Your Honour.
1 Q. Mr. Vasic, could you tell what us what your current position with
2 RS MUP is.
3 A. I am currently the head or director of police of the MUP of
4 Republika Srpska.
5 Q. And can you tell us very briefly what your primary
6 responsibilities are in that position.
7 A. Director of police of Republika Srpska is a senior officer of the
8 operative segment in the Ministry of Interior. He is in command of the
9 uniformed police and is in charge of implementing the law in the
10 territory of Republika Srpska and the legality of the work of the police
11 as a whole.
12 Q. And who is your immediate superior or supervisor?
13 A. My immediate superior is the minister of the interior. And I was
14 appointed to the position that I'm at by the government of the Republika
15 Srpska. So my responsibility is to the minister and the government of
16 Republika Srpska.
17 Q. And what position did you hold prior to your current position,
18 the position you held when you were primarily engaged in performing the
19 analysis we're going to be talking about today.
20 A. For the four or five years before that, I was head of the
21 administration of criminal police. In other words, I was the senior
22 officer of the crime or criminal police of Republika Srpska. Before
23 that, I was the chief of sector of criminal police in CSB Banja Luka.
24 Q. And you mentioned during Judge Harhoff's questions in 1992 that
25 you were a crime Inspector at SJB Laktasi. Can you tell us where Laktasi
2 A. Station of Laktasi or the municipality of Laktasi is north of
3 Banja Luka. It's an area with about 30.000 inhabitants, predominantly of
4 Serbian ethnicity. That was the situation before the war as well.
5 The station before the war had about 30 employees. Some of them
6 were police members and others were administrative staff. I don't know
7 whether I've given you an answer.
8 Q. That's fine. Now you're aware that the indictment in this case
9 pertains to 20 municipalities. As a crime inspector in Laktasi in 1992,
10 how much contact did you personally have with those 20 municipalities?
11 A. In the course of 1992, I worked exclusively in the area of the
12 municipality of Laktasi, and my contacts with other municipalities
13 happened very seldom. It's the territorial jurisdiction that's important
14 in our work, and police works in their own respective areas. We had the
15 most contacts, of course, with the neighbouring municipalities such as
16 Banja Luka, Gradiska, Srbac, Prnjavor, Celinac, and our contacts mainly
17 boiled down to cases where criminal groups would be arrested that had
18 committed crimes in multiple municipalities, then we would work together
19 on that.
20 We had best cooperation both before the war and during and after
21 the war with the Banja Luka police station or the centre, depending on
22 the gravity of the crime we were working on.
23 Q. Now, do you have any personal knowledge from 1992 of the
24 circumstances surrounding any of the criminal reports that are included
25 in your statistical analysis of the crime registers?
1 A. No. Bearing in mind that all these crimes were crimes committed
2 in other areas. I could have only known about them indirectly, either
3 from the media, although the media, at the time, also, had problems.
4 There were current power failures there, so to be precise, it was very
5 difficult to transfer informations, so even those information that was
6 necessary for the police work. To put it simply, information traffic was
7 not functioning properly.
8 Q. The scope of your project is described in your written
9 statements. But just to summarize briefly, you were requested to really
10 perform two tasks: First, to identify entries in the 1992 police crime
11 registers relating to crimes listed in the schedules to the indictment in
12 this case; and, secondly, to identify entries in the 1992 registers for
13 serious crimes committed by Serb perpetrators against non-Serb victims?
14 Can you tell us, what kinds of serious crimes did you look for in
15 these registers?
16 A. My first task was to identify the registers, or log-books, that
17 were kept in various stations because in transfer, the recording was made
18 of the criminal register book of the on-site investigation book and so
19 on. And sometimes one could even find other support documents for the
21 And in relation to the number of crimes that were logged in, and
22 this number is very high, we have analysed only those that are related to
23 the indictments -- in other words, events that took place in 1992 are
24 uncovered by the indictment.
25 What can be found in this -- in these registers is, first of all,
1 number of crimes that were logged in each record book, or the number of
2 them in the period between April and December 1992.
3 Q. And we're going to into a little more detail about the registers
4 in a second. But I want to ask you this question.
5 You were also trying to identify serious crimes, and I just want
6 you to explain to the Trial Chamber what kinds of serious crimes you were
7 looking for.
8 A. I was asked to identify murders, attempted murders, rape, causing
9 of general danger, war crimes, and these crimes -- these are crimes for
10 which it was necessary first to determine those that were committed under
11 the non-Serb population by the police members. Secondly, serious crimes
12 against non-Serbs committed by Serbian perpetrators. Then crimes against
13 non-Serbs by an unknown perpetrators. And then there was a group of
14 those where it could not be determined, as it's stated in the register,
15 whether the victim was a Serb or a non-Serb. And the last column is
16 about those crimes where Serbs were the victims.
17 Q. And just to clarify, with regard to serious crimes, you were
18 looking for -- just looking at the description of the crimes, you were
19 looking for crimes of violence, essentially; is that correct?
20 A. That is correct. Although when one speaks about crimes of
21 violence or crimes that involve elements of hostile or enemy activity, in
22 1992 there was a law in effect in both Republika Srpska and Federation.
23 The Federation whereby certain acts were not qualified as crimes but
24 could have had significant effects on relations between nations, such as
25 destroying somebody's property or entering somebody's home, or causing
1 bodily grievance which were crimes where people normally would have had
2 to file a report and deal with them through courts themselves. These
3 crimes were not encompassed by this. Violent crimes only include causing
4 general dangers, rapes, murders, and such.
5 Q. Now, your statements and annexes do not include the
6 municipalities of Ilijas, Vogosca, Kljuc or Donji Vakuf. Do you know
7 what happened to the 1992 crime registers from those municipalities?
8 A. I'm not aware what may have happened with those registers,
9 although the people who worked in the department for war crimes have
10 tried to locate the documents. However, they failed in their attempts.
11 Q. In your statements, you describe the various log-books and
12 registers maintained by the police in 1992 and the procedures for
13 recording that information -- recording various information into those
14 books. Since your statistical analysis focused on the crime registers or
15 the KUs, or K-Us, I want to ask you a few questions regarding the crime
17 Can you tell us what was the purpose of the police crime
19 A. In every municipality, there was kept one criminal register where
20 one would log all crimes -- or, rather, or all reported crimes by a known
21 or unknown perpetrator that were then passed on to the relevant
22 prosecutor's office.
23 Q. You mentioned unknown perpetrator criminal reports. Can you tell
24 us, once the police identified a perpetrator who was previously unknown,
25 was this information reflected in the criminal register, the crime
2 A. If a perpetrator of a crime is determined, a crime that was
3 earlier reported as committed by unknown perpetrator, then a report would
4 be sent to the prosecutor who was dealing with the case. And then in the
5 same column where it is required, it would said who the perpetrator was.
6 And in that way, this is cleared from the register for unknown
7 perpetrators and moved to the -- to the -- to the other.
8 Q. Just to clarify, once the perpetrator is identified, the police
9 would go back to the original entry for that criminal report and record
10 the name of the perpetrator they were able to identify; is that correct?
11 A. Yes, precisely. In that column, it would -- one would see NN,
12 unknown perpetrator, and once a perpetrator was identified, one would
13 list -- if there were more of them, at least one of them. Sometimes
14 there would be enough room to put in all the perpetrators although there
15 were crimes that involved more than 20 of them; whereas, the boxes
16 include enough space for, let's say, four of them.
17 JUDGE HARHOFF: Mr. Olmsted, most of what you have elicited from
18 the witness is amply explained in his three statements, and you are
19 running close to the half-hour that you had asked for. And I take this
20 opportunity also to correct myself. I was erroneously under the
21 impression that you had been given two hours, but, in fact, you have only
22 been given 30 minutes and they are just about to expire, so please round
24 MR. OLMSTED: I apologise, Your Honour. I did want to highlight
25 a couple of things. I know that the practice is not to do so with 92 ter
1 witnesses, so I'm going to move on.
2 I do want to show one example of one of these annexes so that
3 Your Honours have a good understanding of it. Let me ask one last
4 question, though, about what this witness did to undertake this project.
5 Q. Besides the log-books, themselves, Mr. Vasic, did you use any
6 other resources to identify criminal reports that fell within the scope
7 of this project?
8 A. In addition to the log-books or crime registers, I looked into
9 book of on-sites -- books of on-site investigation -- or, rather, for one
10 municipality, at least for the municipality of Trebinje I did that, to
11 see -- to compare whether there were crimes and on-site investigations
12 that matched. And in such a way, I cleared things up.
13 I also looked at supporting log-books. And in some
14 municipalities, such as Brcko, one could not find a standard log-book.
15 Instead, they kept just a support type of log-book.
16 Q. And beyond the physical books themselves, did you use other
17 resources to assist you in making sure you're identifying the criminal
18 reports accurately? Did you use other resources available to you.
19 A. Bearing in mind that the position that I was holding at the time,
20 I asked the stations that are encompassed by the indictment to prepare
21 analysis for the period, and then I compared the data we found with their
22 analysis, in order to remove any possible mistakes or unclear issues.
23 For instance, the recording of log-books I had was not legible properly.
24 Q. Let's look at the exhibit that's in front of us. It's 65 ter
25 10406.1. If we can turn to the first page.
1 And this is, when we get there, it will be the revised annex you
2 prepared for Kotor Varos. And let me just lay some foundation here.
3 We see -- there's three columns. The first column is the
4 statistical question that was presented to you and you describe those for
5 us. The second contains the total number of criminal reports that you
6 were able to identify in response to each of those questions. And the
7 third column contains the entry numbers in the criminal register for each
8 of those reports.
9 Now, the table for Kotor Varos -- the table for Kotor Varos is a
10 bit different because we see that some of the entry numbers in the third
11 column have question marks next to them.
12 Can you explain to us what the question marks mean?
13 A. The first time we reviewed the documentation concerning
14 Kotor Varos in the standardized form of the crime register, there were
15 350 crimes registered, I believe. But nobody noticed then that it
16 concerned ancillary documents rather than the crime register. All the
17 rubrics were filled in just the same as you do in the crime register, but
18 it was, in fact, supporting documentation where many of these cases were
19 archived in Kotor Varos. Thus, for instance, there is an item in the
20 second line, the crime of rape, one case with two victims, under item 77
21 of that register, and it was not prosecuted and it involves a member of
22 the special detachment.
23 From this documentation, it was impossible to establish whether
24 the number of crimes was not higher because some cases were referred to
25 the military prosecutor, in view of the fact that, at that time, there
1 were certain military operations in Kotor Varos and the military command
2 had jurisdiction, and the military police and the military prosecutor
3 were able to deal with that. However, you cannot see that from the
5 Q. And I just want to clarify. For the purposes of this annex, you
6 in fact reviewed two log-books. First, the open cases log-book, which is
7 maintained by the crime investigation team; and secondly, you reviewed
8 the crime register, the KU for Kotor Varos.
9 A. Yes. In the crime register, out of these 350-something crimes,
10 84 are logged in. However, 38 crimes belong in the period from
11 April through December 1992.
12 Q. And for the entries you identified in the open case log-book,
13 were you able to find those, the ones you have designated with a question
14 mark, in the crime register?
15 A. No. That's why the question mark was put there. Because these
16 are serious crimes that were logged in this ancillary documentation but
17 do not feature in this official register. For instance, in that
18 log-book, we couldn't even find the murder of Stevan Markovic and one
19 Stevilovic who were killed in Kotor Varos sometime in the summer of 1992.
20 Q. And I want to look at this entry 277, the double rape case.
21 MR. OLMSTED: I just want to draw the Trial Chamber's attention
22 to item 6 where there is one war crime against Serb victims identified.
23 And if we may have on the screen now 65 ter 10409. And I ask
24 this not be published because we will be seeing names of victims.
25 And if we can turn to page 108 of the B/C/S, page 4 of the
2 And while they're doing that, I'll just point out for the record
3 that the ERN numbers for the pages we're looking at do not correspond
4 with the ERN range put in his statement, and the reason being that is
5 they're the same log-book but they were a different quality of
6 photographs of them taken, and so we're showing him now the better
7 quality one, but essentially it's -- it is in fact the same log-book.
8 And if we can zoom in on entry 277.
9 Q. Yes, we see that it shows that one of the victims reported her
10 and another woman's rape by Danko Kajkut. And I think you mentioned at
11 the time that Danko Kajkut was with the special detachment. If we look
12 at column 10 is that what is in fact reported in this book, Mr. Vasic?
13 A. Yes.
14 MR. OLMSTED: And if we can scroll over in the B/C/S to column
15 19. And we have to turn the page in the English to the next one.
16 Q. We see under column 19 there's handwritten A/A. What does that
18 A. That means the case was filed in the archives as far as further
19 checks are concerned in the public security station of Kotor Varos, and
20 we have the initials of the man who conducted the previous checks; that
21 is, investigation.
22 Q. If a criminal report was filed for a case in this open cases
23 log-book, would that be reflected in the entry for that case?
24 A. One would see in the crime register a new number and a new entry
25 on the condition that the public security station had finalized the
1 investigation and submitted the criminal report to the prosecutor's
2 office. But if the criminal case had been referred to the military
3 authorities, which we can't see from this, then it would appear as
4 archived in the register. This just means, as far as the public security
5 station is concerned, that no further work is being done.
6 Just looking at a specific case in this book, you cannot see
7 whether and why a case has been archived. It could have been archived,
8 hypothetically speaking, because the perpetrator was found dead.
9 MR. ZECEVIC: I'm sorry if this -- the last part of the witness's
10 answer was not recorded as I heard it. So maybe you can clarify that
11 with the witness.
12 MR. OLMSTED: Yes.
13 Q. If you could just clarify the last part of your testimony with
14 regard to what it meant that the case was archived. You mentioned this
15 does not indicate what -- why it was archived. Can you just make clear
16 what -- what your point was on that issue.
17 A. From this record, you cannot see why a case has been archived.
18 In other words, what the reason was to stop further work on this case.
19 That could have been because the military security had taken it over, or
20 because a report has been attached that the perpetrator is dead or out of
21 reach, in which case an AP bulletin would have been issued. Those could
22 have been the reasons. Another reason could have been that there are no
23 elements of crime. For instance, if a rape was reported in a time-period
24 when it's impossible to prove it, and that is to say if several days have
25 elapsed. In other words, if it was impossible to find physical evidence
1 apart from finding a number of witnesses who could also confirm the --
2 the words of the injured party, in a case of rape.
3 MR. OLMSTED: If we could turn to page 106 of the B/C/S and page
4 2 of the English.
5 JUDGE HARHOFF: And, Mr. Olmsted, that would be your last
7 MR. OLMSTED: Your Honours, I just wanted to show the related
8 log-book to this, and then I will be completed with my questions if that
9 is at all possible. Just to show the link between the two books. I
10 think I have five minutes left, maximum.
11 Q. We see here under entry 58 -- I'm sorry, entry 259 and Article
12 124, armed rebellion case against a number of individuals.
13 If we scroll over to column 24 in the B/C/S, we see in column 24
14 written 58/92. Is that a cross-reference to the criminal register for
15 Kotor Varos.
16 A. Yes.
17 MR. OLMSTED: Let's have on the screen 65 ter 10408. This is the
18 Kotor Varos crime register for 1992. And if we could turn to page 9 of
19 the B/C/S, page 6 of the English. And if we can zoom in under -- well,
20 zoom in on entry 58. Scroll over a bit to the -- to the left-hand side.
21 The other way. No, other way and bring up page 6 in the English.
22 Q. We see here entry 58 that a criminal report was filed against a
23 number of individuals for armed rebellion. So this is the entry that was
24 referenced in the open case log-book; is that correct?
25 A. Yes.
1 MR. OLMSTED: And if we could turn to page 11 of the B/C/S; page
2 8 of the English.
3 Q. We see entry 71 is a criminal report submitted by CSB Banja Luka
4 for war crimes committed against 16 Serbs from Serdar. Is this the war
5 crime case against Serb victims that you identified in the annex to
6 Kotor Varos?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. And we see in column 7 that at the top of the entry it indicates
9 that the perpetrators are unknown. It says NN. But then we see in
10 different handwriting below it, in handwriting the name Marko Sipura. Is
11 this an example where the perpetrator is later identified by the police
12 and then they insert that perpetrator's name into the entry?
13 A. Precisely. The period that elapsed from the first report of the
14 crime and the identification of the perpetrator was probably longer than
15 was necessary to report a crime involving an unidentified perpetrator.
16 Because, in those circumstances, it was quite difficult to identify the
17 perpetrator and find the evidence. There must have been quite a while
18 before the first report of the crime and the identification of the
20 Q. Can you tell us what ethnicity Marko Sipura has?
21 A. I believe he is a Croat. There were 13 other perpetrators
22 involved, and from the moment when this war crime was committed until
23 they were identified, there must have been quite a while. And in this
24 case, perhaps three or four perpetrators were known from the start but we
25 needed to identify the others, and the victim who survived this massacre
1 was probably of some help in the identification.
2 Q. Last question.
3 MR. OLMSTED: If we can scroll over in the B/C/S.
4 Q. We see -- oh, that's too far. Back a little bit. And we can
5 zoom in on column 13.
6 We see that this case was submitted to the military prosecutor;
7 is that correct?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. So if the police investigate a case and they determine that it
10 falls within the military jurisdiction, that case is recorded in this
11 book as well?
12 A. On the condition that the police has completed the entire
13 investigation and collection of evidence. However, if, from the start,
14 the police is aware that a case could fall within the jurisdiction of the
15 military authorities, then they are reported to the military security,
16 and then a decision is made that the military security should probably
17 take that case over.
18 MR. OLMSTED: No further questions, Your Honour.
19 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you.
20 Mr. Vasic, could you just clarify this last point with us,
21 because I think I saw in column 12 that the crime which is the subject of
22 these headings was characterised as a war crime against civilians.
23 So my question to you is: Under which circumstances would a
24 criminal case, such as the one we have in front of us, be referred under
25 the jurisdiction of the military prosecutor?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] All cases involving crimes
2 committed by military or paramilitary units are referred to the military
3 authorities, regardless of whether they were non-Serbs or acting in
4 non-Serb territory, or otherwise. All crimes perpetrated by organised
5 military formations are referred to the military prosecutor. These
6 persons involved here were military conscripts, and even if they had not
7 responded to mobilisation call-up, they would still fall within the
8 jurisdiction of the military prosecutor. If they were responsible for an
9 armed insurgency in that territory, they would still fall within the
10 jurisdiction of the military prosecutor, regardless of the fact that the
11 injured parties were civilians.
12 JUDGE HARHOFF: So the perpetrators in this case, I understand,
13 were of Croat ethnicity. Were they under the command of the -- of the
14 army? So were they regarded as members of the armed forces?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] They were not under the command of
16 the Army of Republika Srpska. They were members of the HVO, the Croatian
17 Defence Council, or members of -- if you want to put it this way,
18 non-Serb military units.
19 JUDGE HARHOFF: So they were regarded as members of the armed
20 forces of the enemy in this conflict at that time.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Precisely.
22 JUDGE HARHOFF: But you also mentioned paramilitary groups.
23 That's what came out in your testimony in translation in any case.
24 How would paramilitary, Serb paramilitary formations be
25 characterised? Would they fall under the jurisdiction of -- and -- and
1 the command of the armed forces of Republika Srpska?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If they had committed a crime, they
3 would fall under the jurisdiction of the military prosecutor and the
4 military security organs, because men over the age of 18 who had done
5 their military service were duty-bound to report to their units, rather
6 than setting up independent groups and moving about, especially not
7 carrying weapons.
8 JUDGE HALL: Mr. Cvijetic -- sorry, Mr. Zecevic, we're so near
9 the time for the break that we would rise now.
10 Is it your preference that we take this extended break now or
11 would you prefer -- or is it more convenient to resume at the regular
12 time and you take the witness as far as you could and then take a break?
13 MR. ZECEVIC: Well, in order to have the continuity, I would
14 prefer the break, if it can be this break that is extended, Your Honours.
15 That would be my preference.
16 There is just one question I would need to clarify with my
17 learned friend from the Prosecutor's side, because I'm not -- at this
18 point, I'm not really clear what is the 92 ter package for this witness.
19 Does the 92 ter package consist of 10406 and 10406.1?
20 MR. OLMSTED: Yes, that is the case.
21 What the -- what 10406.1 is are the -- basically revisions,
22 corrections and additions to his 1 April 2010 annexes. So to the extent
23 that they're not covered by the revisions, then you will resort to the
24 original statement.
25 MR. ZECEVIC: Thank you. I understand now.
1 Your Honours, I would need probably additional 15 to 20 minutes
2 to the -- to the original time of the break, if that can be given to us.
3 Thank you.
4 JUDGE HALL: So should we think in terms of resuming at 11.00 or
6 MR. ZECEVIC: 11.00 is perfect. Thank you.
7 JUDGE HALL: All right. 11.00 it is.
8 [The witness stands down]
9 --- Recess taken at 10.25 a.m.
10 --- On resuming at 11.10 a.m.
11 [Trial Chamber confers]
12 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Olmsted or Mr. Hannis, while we're waiting
13 for the witness we have two small questions in regard to the viva voce
14 estimates of the witnesses you -- you propose to be 92 bis in the 44
15 extra witnesses for adjudicated facts. You with me?
16 So two question. This there is one -- Witness ST-232 is listed
17 on the estimate -- the estimate list you gave us last week as being
18 changed from Rule 92 bis to 92 quater witness. Could you indicate us
19 what the reason of this change is. If not immediately ...
20 And the second question is, ST-240. Is listed with a viva voce
21 estimate of 0 hours. I suppose that's a mistake.
22 MR. HANNIS: No, Your Honour, but I think I can address both
23 the -- answer both those questions for you after the next break.
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
25 MR. ZECEVIC: Thank you, Your Honours.
1 Cross-examination by Mr. Zecevic:
2 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, sir.
3 A. Good morning.
4 Q. I just have to ask you something, because we heard that this is
5 the first time you're testifying before this Tribunal. Because of the
6 interpretation, we must make a pause and speak slower for the
7 interpreters to have enough time to interpret everything and for it to be
8 recorded in the transcript. Because if you answer too soon, then we may
9 overlap and it will not -- it won't be possible for the interpreters to
11 A. I'll bear that in mind.
12 Q. Mr. Vasic, you're an employee of the Ministry of Interior and you
13 have been employed there for 25 years; right?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Currently, if I understood correctly, you're the director of the
16 police in the RS, right?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. I suppose that the OTP asked you to draft the report that you
19 drafted, due to your knowledge of the subject matter and due to your long
20 experience in -- with these things, right?
21 A. The first reason why I was supposed to assist the OTP was to
22 identify the log-books and registers for it to be known what the log-book
23 of events was, what the criminal register was, and what some possible
24 ancillary documents were.
25 Before the war, during the war, and after the war I have been
1 with the crime police, and we reached agreement within the ministry for
2 me to be the OTP's witness in this trial. Later on, requests were also
3 made regarding the analyses of serious crimes; also upon the request of
4 the Prosecution.
5 Q. If I understood you correctly, the Prosecution gave you the six
6 questions. That can be found in your schematics that you made. And you
7 dealt with them municipality by municipality and consulting various
8 documents in the process; correct?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. However, it's a fact, isn't it, that, based on consulting
11 exclusively the criminal register, the KU register, it isn't possible to
12 ascertain with perfect certainty all these facts. It is the position of
13 the Defence that --
14 MR. OLMSTED: Your Honours, we request that -- when the Defence
15 asks questions they don't state, This is the position of the Defence.
16 They just ask questions.
17 MR. ZECEVIC: Well, Your Honours, I'm a bit confused. So far I
18 have been reminded on numerous occasions that the -- that the -- the
19 Defence is supposed to apply the Rule 90(H)(ii), where I have to state
20 our case to the witness. Now, when I'm trying to do that, I get the
21 objection from the Prosecution. I would like that the Prosecution
22 clarifies its position.
23 MR. OLMSTED: Your Honour, our position is, yes, the Defence do
24 have to state their position but they don't have to phrase the question
25 in a way saying that, This is what we, as a Defence, are contending with
1 a witness. It's just put the question to the witness and have him answer
2 it, without any clause in there saying, This is the position we're taking
3 on this matter.
4 JUDGE HALL: So it's a question of how the question is phrased.
5 MR. OLMSTED: Precisely, Your Honours.
6 MR. ZECEVIC:
7 Q. [Interpretation] Sir, I put it to you that a comprehensive image
8 based on the questions put to you by the Prosecution can be depicted only
9 after reviewing all the KU registers, log-books of daily events, and the
10 register of on-site investigation -- investigations, which was kept with
11 each individual SJB or CSB respectively. Do you agree with me?
12 A. A complete image of everything that was happening can be painted
13 this way, but an analysis of the log-book of daily events, the KU
14 register, and the other register would include about 50.000 entries,
15 which is a task much too demanding for an individual to carry out,
16 especially considering that I have to go about my regular business.
17 Q. If I understood your reply correctly, you agree with my statement
18 that to get a complete picture of the events and provide answers to these
19 questions, it would be necessary, as far as the police is concerned, to
20 consult three documents: The KU register, the log-book of daily events,
21 and the register of on-site investigations. Do you agree?
22 A. Yes. That is how you check things when auditing a police
23 station. You check whether all events were investigated. If so, whether
24 on-site investigations were made, and whether reports were filed with the
25 prosecutor's office. That would be a comprehensive analysis which one
1 person cannot make himself, especially not in such a short period that.
2 Would require a team of analysts.
3 The questions put to me -- or, rather, the requests made, did not
4 include all this because it would have been clear that I wouldn't be able
5 to do so.
6 Q. So the information contained in your schematics and snap-shots of
7 the situation basically is problem-ridden. Namely, it is possible that
8 the information is not complete or that your analysis was not accompanied
9 by an analysis of other documents.
10 A. Well, I can answer either in the affirmative or the -- in the
11 negative. The question is what was entered in the KU register. So the
12 scope of my work was clearly de-limited by the questions.
13 Q. Apart from what I listed -- I mean, the log-books and registers
14 kept at SJBs, in accordance with the rules of service and at the CSBs; in
15 other words, in the bodies of the Ministry of Interior, are not enough.
16 The registers of the public prosecutor's office and the court would also
17 have to be consulted to get a complete picture.
18 A. The log-books and registers of the public prosecutor's office and
19 the courts are also necessary to get a complete picture of what not only
20 the police but also the citizens filed with these bodies reported to
21 them. In accordance with the Law on Criminal Procedure, which was in
22 force in Bosnia and Herzegovina then, stipulated that reports could be
23 filed with the public prosecutor's office either orally or in writing.
24 So the place where you could get a complete picture of what was reported
25 to the police and the public prosecutor's office is the log-book of daily
1 events, plus the log-book of the public prosecutor's office.
2 Q. When you say the direct reporting of crimes, let me explain a bit
3 or ...
4 Let's assume that an injured party after a crime has been
5 committed by which he or she has been injured, in accordance with the
6 rules and regulations in force then, they could file a criminal report
7 directly with the public prosecutor's office in writing or orally, by
8 which the police would have been excluded from the process, because the
9 police wouldn't know that such a criminal report was received by the
10 public prosecutor's office; correct?
11 A. Yes, in the first phase. The public prosecutor's office, if they
12 can complete the investigation themselves, they can do so. But most
13 often, the public prosecutor's office will send a request to the SJB in
14 charge to verify or to conduct a verification on the ground. And no
15 matter whether this document was received from the public prosecutor's
16 office, it will be recorded in the KU register.
17 Q. I'm trying to explain the Trial Chamber and everybody present how
18 things are done, so let us focus and proceed in a chronological sequence.
19 So the injured party had the right to file a criminal report
20 directly with the public prosecutor's office in writing or orally. Your
21 answer was affirmative, wasn't it?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. After that, it was customary for the public prosecutor to forward
24 this report to the police with some instructions or requests to collect
25 information to establish facts and the like; correct?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. And, after those instructions of the prosecutor to collect
3 information or establish facts were carried out, the police would submit
4 that information to the prosecutor; correct?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Tell me, please, sir, can you tell us - and I'm now returning to
7 the log-book of daily events - were all events entered in that log-book
8 about which the officer on duty learned during that day?
9 A. Yes. All events would be entered in the log-book of daily events
10 without any censoring.
11 Q. Can you tell us what the ratio was between the number of entries
12 and the crimes that are included in that log-book of daily events? The
13 rough ratio, in accordance with your experience.
14 A. Well, it should be 1:5 -- from 1:5 to 1:10. More likely toward
16 Q. Just to clarify this, that would mean in the log-book of daily
17 incidents kept by a certain public security station one would find, let's
18 say, ten information -- items of information about certain events taking
19 place on a certain day, and one of those would be about a crime -- a
20 crime that was committed on that day.
21 A. Yes, that's correct.
22 Q. Could you please tell me, Mr. Vasic, even before the unfortunate
23 events, you had worked in the Ministry of the Interior, and it is a fact,
24 isn't it, that with the start of the war, first in former Yugoslavia in
25 general and in Bosnia and Herzegovina in particular, there was a huge
1 increase in the number of crimes of -- or behaviour of criminal nature,
2 in relation to the period before the war; is that correct?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. It is a fact that certain types of especially serious crimes in
5 the period before the war was rather seldom occurring in the territory of
6 former Yugoslavia. Am I right in saying that?
7 A. Yes, that's correct. Crimes of murder, of causing general
8 danger, and even certain crimes of -- of robbery were of a much lower
9 frequency than in the war period.
10 Q. The trends in the former Yugoslavia were on the decrease before
11 the war, when we're talking about such crimes.
12 A. Yes, that's correct. The number of murders was, all the time,
13 decreasing, and crimes involving causing general danger was almost non-
14 existence because weapons were not widespread. All the weapons were
15 either in the barracks or with the army, and rifles that were used for
16 hunting and such were not very often used in such a -- types of crimes,
17 and especially explosives were an exception to the rule.
18 Q. Bearing in mind the situation we have just described, it is a
19 fact that public security stations on the territory of former Yugoslavia,
20 SFRY, were not really well-equipped, especially in terms of forensic
21 equipment, to conduct good quality investigation of serious crimes. Am I
23 A. Well, that is natural. Certain types of crimes, police never
24 received reports about them, so there was no reason for the police to
25 invest so much into working on that type of crimes [as interpreted].
1 Issues like that simply require a lot of funds, and before the war, with
2 all the funds invested, you wouldn't have seen that much of an
3 improvement. However, in 1992, of course, having had that -- those
4 equipment would have helped a lot, because investigations would have
5 proceeded with more expedition.
6 Q. Essentially, in time when the war broke out, and when the number
7 of extremely serious crimes increased, the police, having at their
8 disposal what they had in former Yugoslavia, was not sufficiently
9 equipped to investigate such serious crimes. Is that your conclusion?
10 MR. OLMSTED: Your Honours, I just want to raise an objection
11 here. It seems like my learned friend is asking questions regarding what
12 is happening throughout the Republika Srpska or the former Yugoslavia
13 while this witness has clearly stated that he was a crime inspector in
14 one municipality and I think we're -- we lack foundation here for him to
15 be answering questions about what was happening in 1992 outside of
17 If that -- if my learned friend's questions are directed at
18 Laktasi I think that's fair. But if he's talking beyond his
19 municipality, I think there needs to be some more foundation laid here as
20 to how this witness would have personal knowledge as to what was going on
21 in other municipalities in 1992.
22 MR. ZECEVIC:
23 Q. [Interpretation] I do agree with Mr. Olmsted. I was speaking in
24 general terms intentionally, believing that it's general knowledge. But
25 I would like to ask you, sir, to, in your answers, specify that you're
1 talking about your public security station.
2 So can we say that the situation was as described in your public
3 security station where you worked?
4 A. Before the war broke out in Bosnia and Herzegovina, in the area
5 of Laktasi, there were very few crimes of causing general danger, and
6 after the breakout of the war, the number reached 100. It made up for 22
7 per cent of the crime in general.
8 Only 5 or 6 per cent were properly investigated and completed,
9 because conditions weren't existent. In some cases we didn't have
10 equipment that would enable us to determine whether a burst of
11 machine-gun fire against, let's say, a church in Zvornik was done from a
12 distance of 100, 300, or 500 metres, and also because there were weapons
13 everywhere, one could find shells all over the place, and it was very
14 difficult to connect this with a specific crime. So for objective
15 reasons it was impossible to determine certain things.
16 Also, there were some cases of murder where we would have been
17 greatly assisted had we had better forensic equipment. We didn't have
18 DNA method capabilities. But in the area of Laktasi, we did manage to
19 resolve all the issues involving murder cases.
20 Q. Thank you. Let us get back to the documents now.
21 The documents, or at least one of the documents kept in the
22 public security stations, was the log-book or register of on-site
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. This log-book of onsite investigations included data and
1 information about all events and on-site investigations carried out by
2 the public security station in its area of responsibility.
3 A. Yes, that is correct.
4 Q. From this log-book of on-site investigations, one can see where
5 the investigation was carried out, based on which criminal report, and
6 who was present at the scene.
7 A. Yes. The book is kept in chronological order. After any of the
8 on-site investigations, information would be logged about who took part
9 in the investigation; namely, the investigative judge, prosecutor,
10 forensic experts, and inspector -- police inspector. Sometimes the judge
11 or the prosecutor would authorise the investigator, the inspector to
12 represent them, so only they would be present.
13 Q. So in cases when the prosecutor or the investigative judge is
14 present at the on-site investigation, from that moment, he or she is the
15 person giving instructions to the police as to what to do in the
16 following period.
17 A. Yes. They conduct the investigation, they write a report about
18 it, and instructs the members of the team as to what to do on the site of
19 the investigation.
20 Q. The situation was the same when the -- either investigative judge
21 or the prosecutor authorises the police inspector to carry out this
22 on-site investigation on their own. After the on-site investigation, the
23 police inspector submits the report or the minutes to the prosecutor, who
24 then give instructions to the police as to what to do from that moment
1 A. Very seldom it would be only this record of the on-site
2 investigation that would be submitted to the prosecutor and investigative
3 judge. But in any case, then the request would be made from the
4 police -- to the police to find out who the perpetrators were, to find
5 out all the evidence, and from that moment on, the process would go on.
6 Q. In cases when it is clear from the on-site investigation that the
7 perpetrator is unknown, we can take as an example one of those cases of
8 causing general danger, or maybe a grievous bodily harm was caused, then
9 a report is immediately made to the prosecutor.
10 A. Yes. Every on-site investigation is made in four copies: One
11 goes to the prosecutor; one to the investigative judge; one copy is kept
12 in the public station; and one is kept with the operative who is working
13 on the case.
14 Q. Sir, it is a fact - and I think you spoke about it briefly during
15 the direct examination - that, in addition to crimes that were prosecuted
16 ex officio, there was a certain number of crimes that weren't done in
17 such a way, that were done on the basis of a private civil [as
18 interpreted] action.
19 A. Yes. I emphasised --
20 Q. Just a moment, please.
21 Just to make it clear, what I said was a private criminal report
22 or criminal lawsuit. It's on page 39:25. Maybe the term itself is not
23 clear enough so I would like to ask you to briefly explain what is this
24 private criminal lawsuit or report.
25 A. According to the law at the time, the Law on Criminal Proceedings
1 of Bosnia and Herzegovina, there were certain types of crimes that were
2 to be dealt with or prosecuted ex officio, and I won't go into that, and
3 there were also certain crimes that had to be prosecuted on the basis of
4 private criminal lawsuit such as violation of private property or place
5 of habitation, then threats, insults, and cases of inflammatory national
6 hatred attempts. Because when a person comes to a police station, this
7 is all that the police can do, report it, and we all know how such
8 activities can -- what effect can it have on citizens that are part of,
9 let's say, a minority group in a certain area.
10 Q. I believe this may be something that would be good to illustrate,
11 so I'll show you a few documents that are relevant for this oral criminal
13 MR. ZECEVIC: [Interpretation] Could we please see 1D00-1984 on
14 the screen. It is tab 84; I apologise.
15 Q. This memo, I think the date of it is 3rd of September, 1992.
16 CS -- can you see this, can you read it?
17 A. Yes. I can see it saying public security station Banja Luka,
18 crime prevention and detection department.
19 This is an accompanying memo that went with an oral criminal
20 report a police station received in cases of theft; for instance, you
21 would get such a report where it is not necessary to do an on-site
22 investigation. Theft of movable property or a vehicle; namely, type of
23 theft which does not leave traces on the site where it took place.
24 Q. Let me show you page number 2 of this document. This is -- these
25 are the minutes of taking of the criminal report. The date is 29th of
1 August, 1992. It is a criminal report made by Adem Rajic, son of Selim.
2 His name clearly determines that it's a person of Muslim
3 ethnicity; am I right?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Citizen Adem Rajic is submitting a criminal report on account of
6 an instance of causing public danger because his weekend residence had
7 been burnt down somewhere near Banja Luka.
8 Can you see that?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And on page 3 of this document, there is a form that had to be
11 filled in as a record of receipt of such a verbal report.
12 A. Right.
13 Q. And this is precisely the situation you described a moment ago.
14 The injured party comes to the police, reports a crime, the type of crime
15 that is not prosecuted ex officio?
16 A. No, no, no. This one is prosecuted ex officio because it
17 involves causing public danger, and the police has to act and does act in
18 a case of this type.
19 Q. I'm sorry. However, if the crime in question is not subject to
20 prosecution ex officio, unlike this one, then the police would direct the
21 citizen to file a private criminal lawsuit before a competent court.
22 A. Yes. In that case, the police would just record it in the
23 log-book of daily events.
24 Q. All right.
25 MR. ZECEVIC: [Interpretation] If there is no objection, I would
1 like to tender this document.
2 JUDGE HALL: Admitted and marked.
3 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit 1D349, Your Honours.
4 MR. ZECEVIC:
5 Q. [Interpretation] I believe you touched upon this in one of the
6 previous answers. Some very unpleasant criminal offences, such as verbal
7 injury, violation of residence, causing damage to another's property,
8 light bodily injury, all these criminal offences that may involve ethnic
9 motives, nationalist motives, unfortunately were prosecuted in that
10 system on the basis of a private criminal suit, not ex officio.
11 A. That's right.
12 Q. And although, in this way, individuals may intimidate others by
13 committing such crimes, they can intimidate members of another ethnic
14 community, the police, under the prevailing legislation, is unable to
15 file criminal reports or take any action.
16 A. The police is not able to file a criminal report, but from what I
17 know about what was going on in practice, the police did try to approach
18 such individuals and issue warnings and try to deter them from further
19 intimidating citizens.
20 Q. However, what the police officers did, did not strictly fall
21 within their job description because such offences were subject to
22 prosecution on the basis of a private criminal suit, but the police did
23 that for prophylactic reasons and to defuse the general tensions?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. While we're still on the subject, your first-hand knowledge
1 originates from the police station in Laktasi where you worked before the
2 war and throughout the war, if I understood correctly?
3 A. Until mid-1993.
4 Q. Since it is year 1992 that is relevant to this indictment, we
5 will restrict ourselves to that period and to the police station of
7 Tell me, the situation -- the security situation in the territory
8 of the police station Laktasi and further afield in Bosnia and
9 Herzegovina was such that the economy and the businesses came to a halt
10 practically immediately after the outbreak of the conflict.
11 A. Yes. The factories stopped working because the employees were
12 mostly military conscripts, and if, in some cases factories did continue
13 to operate, they did so to a much reduced capacity.
14 Q. It is a fact that the developments in Slovenia and later Croatia
15 caused the businesses to lose their markets and the markets from which
16 they obtained raw materials.
17 A. Both. Because the -- the economy was so inter-dependant that a
18 factory was not self-sufficient. It was not possible for a factory or a
19 business to exist without being essentially and substantially interlinked
20 with businesses in other territories of the country.
21 Q. And, of course, another effect of that was that businesses in the
22 industry, commerce, and in every other line, began to close down.
23 A. Yes. 1991 was just the beginning, and it got worse as time went
25 Q. And it is a fact that this began already in 1991, when the
1 conflicts began, first in Slovenia, and then in Croatia, and this slow
2 death of the industry resulted in the loss of many jobs?
3 A. A significant number of people were left jobless because the
4 industries came into -- came to a halt, and in some areas, such as
5 Banja Luka, there were major problems in electricity supply. And then
6 imagine a company working in the area of computers or services operating
7 with -- with power cuts as long as 36 hours, and you know very well that
8 many parts of the city were in a complete blackout for days on end.
9 Q. The only production that survived for a while was agricultural
10 production, which also supplied food to the army.
11 A. Yes. But they, too, experienced problems, because power supply
12 was reduced and because many heads of families were military conscripts
13 and had to join the army. And you know that in a -- in a regular family,
14 there are not that many men, usually one or two.
15 Q. It is a fact that in our system we had general conscription
16 applying to all men.
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And it's also a fact that if one enterprise or one factory closes
19 down for the reasons that we've described, those employees who did not
20 respond to the mobilize call-up were simply left jobless, right?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Thank you.
23 MR. ZECEVIC: I see the time, Your Honours. I don't know -- I
24 don't know if you would like me to maintain the usual breaks or ...
25 JUDGE HALL: Yes. But perhaps we could go an additional five
1 minutes or so and when you reach a convenient point you could so
3 MR. HANNIS: And, Your Honours, I don't know, but I'd ask before
4 you leave the Bench for this break I could two minutes to answer
5 Judge Delvoie's question and raise one other matter.
6 MR. ZECEVIC: Then maybe it is appropriate that I excuse the
8 JUDGE HALL: Yes.
9 The usher may escort the witness from the courtroom.
10 Mr. Vasic, we would resume your testimony at about 12.25.
11 [The witness stands down]
12 MR. HANNIS: If I may, Your Honour.
13 Judge Delvoie, your questions regarding ST-232, a change of
14 status as proposed to make him 92 quater. Between the time we initially
15 contact him about being a witness to deal with the adjudicated facts,
16 unfortunately, in July, he passed away and so he's -- he is no longer
17 available viva.
18 With regard to ST-240, the reasons for that estimate of zero
19 hours is set forth in a Confidential Annex attached to the motion, and
20 without going into private session I would refer you to that.
21 If you still have a question after reviewing that, I can address
22 it later.
23 The third thing was, Ms. Korner asked me to remind you of her
24 request concerning a decision on the Prosecution's request to add a video
25 to be used with the upcoming witness, ST-023, because she is seeing him
1 this afternoon and may show it to him or not, depending on the ruling.
2 Thank you.
3 [Trial Chamber confers]
4 JUDGE HALL: Mr. Hannis, that decision is in process of being
5 refined. But in terms of the -- the portion of the application dealing
6 with the admission of the videos, it would grant that aspect.
7 So you may prepare yourself accordingly.
8 MR. HANNIS: I will. Thank you very much, Your Honour.
9 [Trial Chamber confers]
10 JUDGE HARHOFF: Just for clarification -- and for clarification,
11 it's the 65 ter numbers 3622 and 3623, two videos.
12 MR. HANNIS: Thank you.
13 JUDGE HALL: So we take the break now.
14 --- Recess taken at 12.07 p.m.
15 --- On resuming at 12.37 p.m.
16 JUDGE HALL: While we await the arrival of the witness there are
17 two oral decisions that we have to hand down.
18 The Chamber remains seized of Prosecution' motion of the 5th of
19 August to change the mode of testimony of ST-136 and ST-210. The Defence
20 jointly responded on the 19th August opposing the motion.
21 On the 20th of August, the Prosecution sought leave to reply and
22 filed a reply. The Trial Chamber recalls that on 20th of August the
23 Chamber granted the motion in respect of ST-210 and also granted leave to
24 reply. The present decision only deals with ST-136.
25 The Prosecution seeks to change the mode of testimony of 136 from
1 viva voce to Rule 92 ter and requests one and a half hours for the
3 The Chamber considers that it is in the interests of the
4 expeditious conduct of the proceedings and in accordance with the rights
5 of the accused to hear 136, pursuant to 92 ter.
6 However, the Prosecution has not indicated that this witness
7 would offer evidence beyond her Rule 92 ter statements, which total over
8 120 pages. Considering that there is no additional viva voce issue which
9 would warrant more than 20 to 30 minutes, the guide-lines provide for a
10 92 ter witness, the Prosecution has not justified its request for more
11 time than 20 to 30 minutes.
12 The Trial Chamber grants the Prosecution's motion to call 136
13 pursuant to Rule 92 ter and allows 32 minutes for examination-in-chief.
14 Second ruling. The Chamber is seized of three motions filed on
15 the 3rd, 4th and 20th of August. By the motions of the 3rd and 4th of
16 August, the Prosecution seeks leave to add to its exhibit list two
17 videos, Rule 65 ter numbers 3622 and 3623. By the motion filed on the
18 20th of August, the Prosecution seeks to add Rule 65 ter numbers 10440,
19 10441, and 10442 which are confidential. In responses filed on the 17th
20 and 24th of August, the Defence jointly objected to the Prosecution's
21 request. Today, the Prosecution has granted leave to reply and replied
22 to the response to the 20th of August motions.
23 The Chamber is satisfied of the prima facie relevance and
24 probative value of the two videos. Given that they were obtained on 9th
25 of July and that the Prosecution filed the motions within a month, the
1 Prosecution has shown good cause and acted with due diligence.
2 The Prosecution argues that the three documents should have been
3 included in the motion on the 3rd of August. It submits, however, that
4 "the existence of these additional documents was not conveyed to the
5 skeleton staff of the Prosecution team who organised the Rule 92 ter
6 package and filed the motions at that time."
7 The quotation really begins with the: "The existence."
8 Continuing. Unless specifically ordered by a Chamber, a moving
9 party is not under any deadline before which it must file a motion. In
10 the present case, the Prosecution should have exercised greater diligence
11 and care in filing its 3rd of August motion. However, the Chamber holds
12 that the Defence would not be unduly prejudiced, were the three documents
13 to be added, in view of their nature and length. It also finds that the
14 documents are prima facie relevant and probative and that they will
15 assist the Chamber in determining issues raised in the indictment.
16 For these reasons and in the interests of justice, the Chamber
17 allows the addition of Rule 65 ter numbers 3622, 3623, 10440, 10441 and
18 10442 to the Prosecution's exhibit list.
19 Thank you.
20 Yes, Mr. Zecevic, you may continue.
21 MR. ZECEVIC: Thank you, Your Honours.
22 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Vasic --
23 Just a moment; I apologise.
24 [Trial Chamber and Legal Officer confer]
25 MR. ZECEVIC:
1 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Vasic, somewhere in early April 1992, you
2 were employed at the SJB of Laktasi; correct?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. In early April 1992, the MUP of the Socialist Federative Republic
5 of Bosnia and Herzegovina was split into the MUP of the Republika Srpska
6 and the MUP of the Federation. Are you aware of that?
7 A. The MUP of Republika Srpska, yes; but the rest was not called the
8 Federation then. Later on it was integrated to become a federation.
9 Q. At that time, in early April 1992, you said, if I remember
10 correctly, that the SJB of Laktasi numbered about 30 men in all. That
11 is, authorised officials and administrative personnel; correct?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. At that time, there were also persons working at the SJB who were
14 not ethnic Serbs; correct?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. They were Muslims or Croats; correct?
17 A. In the police, there were two Croats, and I think that in the
18 administration, there was another person of Croatian ethnicity.
19 Q. That certainly reflected the ethnic composition of Laktasi
20 municipality; correct?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. These two or three persons of Croatian ethnicity, after the
23 division of the MUP, they continued to work for the MUP of Republika
24 Srpska; correct?
25 A. Yes. These three particular individuals did stay at the SJB of
1 Laktasi, and I think that only this year one of them retired, and
2 another, four or five years ago, found a new job with SIPA and
3 subsequently retired.
4 Q. So if I understood you correctly, those Croatian colleagues of
5 yours who worked with you at the Laktasi SJB in 1992, throughout the war
6 worked at the SJB of Laktasi, and after the war too, and only now retired
7 recently, in fact; right?
8 A. Yes, exactly.
9 Q. Since you were -- worked with those persons at the SJB, was any
10 pressure exerted on those persons to stay employees of the MUP of the RS?
11 A. That was not my impression. Those are people who lived there
12 with their families - in Laktasi municipality, that is - and we had
13 correct relations with them. One was a uniformed police officer; another
14 was a crime investigator, because he was able to graduate from law school
15 while he was with the police, but that was immediately before the war.
16 And then he was promoted.
17 Q. At the Laktasi SJB, there were all these registers we mentioned.
18 The criminal register, KU; then the log-book of daily events, and so on.
19 All those were present at the SJB; right?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Did you ever receive an order, written or oral, from anybody or
22 any sort of instructions regarding crimes committed by Serbs at the
23 detriment of persons of other ethnicities - that is, non-Serbs - to the
24 effect that you should act in a certain way?
25 A. No. There were no instructions or orders to the effect that we
1 should proceed in a certain way regarding a report.
2 Q. So if I understood you correctly, at the SJB where you worked, no
3 discrimination was in place with regard to the identity of the
4 perpetrator or the victim of a crime; correct?
5 A. That is, indeed, correct.
6 Q. If I understood you correctly when you said that you received no
7 orders or instructions of that kind, I can conclude that you acted in
8 accordance with the law.
9 A. Precisely. And that is why some serious crimes committed in the
10 area were resolved.
11 Q. Have you ever heard from anybody or received any information that
12 any employee of the MUP of the RS received instructions or information to
13 practice discrimination with regard to the perpetrators or victims of
15 A. No.
16 Q. You mentioned serious crimes. In the territory covered by your
17 SJB, were there any instances of such serious crimes in 1992?
18 A. There was one murder of a non-Serb and his child. That case was
20 There was also a murder of a -- of an ethnic Croat at Trn not far
21 from the police station; that was also solved. And there was also
22 committing a -- a dangerous act, causing public danger with lethal
23 consequences. The act was committed by using explosives. It was at
24 Mahovljani, not far from Laktasi, and that case was not solved. A part
25 of a -- of an engineering structure fell off a building and caused the
1 death of a woman.
2 There were also instances of theft of parts of the Roman Catholic
3 church at Mahovljani, not far from the airstrip.
4 Q. All these crimes that you have just mentioned, apart from the one
5 which is still unsolved, involved perpetrators of Serb ethnicity;
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. And the victims, as you said, were non-Serbs; correct?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. You solved those cases, and they were documented and due process
11 was applied. But tell me, did ever -- did anybody ever hold it against
12 you that you investigated Serbs who committed crimes against non-Serbs?
13 A. No. On the contrary. The population of our area was in favour
14 of our efforts because in the background of those crimes there was
15 something else rather than ethnic hatred or nationalism.
16 Q. When you say the citizen in the territory covered by the SJB of
17 Laktasi, we're talking mostly about Serbs. The majority were Serbs;
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Tell me, Mr. Vasic, do you remember that, in 1992, you received
21 from the MUP of the RS ...
22 MR. ZECEVIC: [Interpretation] Just a moment. Let me find it.
23 Q. It was received from Mr. Dobro Planojevic, and it's about the
24 investigation of war crimes. Do you remember that instruction?
25 A. No, I don't. Because such dispatches were received by the chief
1 of the police station, and if they were addressed to the crime police,
2 then the head of the crime police would receive such notifications. And
3 if we were only informed orally, well, you can't really expect me to
4 remember everything that was communicated to us orally at the time.
5 MR. ZECEVIC: [Interpretation] Could we please show 1D63 to the
7 Q. That may jog injure memory. While we're waiting for the document
8 to come up, do you remember who Dobro Planojevic is?
9 A. I know the name, but I never met the man.
10 MR. ZECEVIC: [Interpretation] I apologise, my mistake, I really
11 need 1D84. This is the second document I want to show the witness.
12 So it's my fault. I really need 1D84.
13 MR. OLMSTED: Mr. Zecevic, if you could just give us the
14 tab number because there are so many documents you have here it will be
15 easier for us to find the document.
16 MR. ZECEVIC: I was trying to find the document myself, so please
17 bear with me.
18 MR. OLMSTED: You don't have to do it for this one because it's
19 on the screen, but just in the future, Mr. Zecevic.
20 MR. ZECEVIC: It's tab number 149.
21 Q. This is a letter signed by Dobro Planojevic, Assistant Minister
22 for prevention and detection of crime, and it's dated 5 June 1992, and it
23 was sent to all the CSBs in the territory of the RS.
24 A. This is probably why I am not familiar with this document because
25 it was only sent to the centres of public security, not to the public
1 security stations. Possibly it was forwarded to the stations, but I have
2 never seen the document.
3 I know, however, what this is about. It's about investigations
4 into war crimes.
5 MR. ZECEVIC: [Interpretation] Could we now please show the
6 witness 1D63. That's under tab 148.
7 Q. Sir, this document is dated 19 July, and it's an instruction
8 about keeping registers or questionnaires about war crimes for victims of
9 genocide. If I show you pages 2 and 3, that may jog your memory.
10 MR. ZECEVIC: [Interpretation] It's on pages 2 and 3 of the
11 Serbian version.
12 Could I also please see page 3.
13 Q. It's the RZ form. And then it says: "Victim of war crime. And
14 under item 7, there's a line for ethnicity. And item 12 is about the
15 status of the victim, whether they are a civilian or a member of some
16 armed unit.
17 Do you know this RZ form?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Thank you. Speaking about war crimes, tell me, do you know that
20 in 1992 there were requests that war crimes committed against non-Serbs
21 be treated separately. Do you know that?
22 A. I think it was for the centres to deal with that, and the issue
23 of a -- separately treating crimes committed against Serbs is a problem
24 because of a territorial jurisdiction. But in order to collect
25 documentation about that, we needed instructions as to how to act in such
1 cases. War crimes committed against Serbs in the territory where we had
2 territorial jurisdiction, well, in such cases, the law was clear, and we
3 knew how to act.
4 Q. Let us just clarify. The essence of that instruction to collect
5 information about war crimes committed against Serbs, was that war crimes
6 committed against Serbs in the territory where you had no jurisdiction;
7 that is, territories outside the RS or territories outside the area
8 controlled by your SJB?
9 A. Yes, correct.
10 Q. In fact, that applied to crimes committed against Serbs in
11 territories controlled by Croatian or Muslim forces. That is, enemy
12 forces; correct?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. It is true, isn't it, that there were quite a lot of problems in
15 documenting such crimes in the course of 1992 and up until 1995, but
16 especially during 1992.
17 A. Of course. The problem was the fact that, first of all, the site
18 of the crime was not under our jurisdiction. Also, perpetrators were
19 most probably under the control of those who were not under our
20 jurisdiction. The same can be said about -- about non-Serbs who were
21 victims of crimes in our territory, who then fled away and tried to
22 report such crimes somewhere else.
23 At the time the conditions for proving such cases were
24 non-existent. The only thing that could have been done was to take a
25 statement from the victim.
1 Q. And that is the very essence of this issue. The members of
2 Serbian nation who fled to the territory of Republika Srpska and who had
3 information, who could testify about crimes against members of the
4 Serbian people, had to be interviewed and their statements needed to be
5 documented and filed somewhere in order to make sure that massacres and
6 terrible acts could be processed later on, after the war.
7 A. Precisely. To process such crimes, to work on such crimes, it
8 was necessary to have co-operation from the other side.
9 Q. It is a fact, isn't it, the public opinion in Republika Srpska
10 criticise harshly the lack of such authentic testimonies about crimes
11 against Serbs committed outside of Republika Srpska in 1992.
12 MR. OLMSTED: Your Honours, how can this witness talk about the
13 public opinion of the Republika Srpska in 1992 when he was in Laktasi as
14 a crime inspector?
15 MR. ZECEVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, this witness was
16 brought here by the OTP with a purpose of giving us a report about
17 criminal registers from public security stations from all over Republika
18 Srpska. If we would apply this very principle, we wouldn't be able to do
19 this analysis either because he worked in Laktasi only. I am asking the
20 witness whether he is familiar as a long-term police officer about these
21 things. I'm asking him whether he is aware that there was criticism of
22 the police in relation to crimes committed against Serbs on territories
23 under the control of the enemy, was not documented.
24 JUDGE HALL: Please proceed, Mr. Zecevic. If the witness is able
25 to answer it, so be it.
1 MR. ZECEVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours. And I
2 apologise, I kept going.
3 Q. Sir, could you please answer my question.
4 A. I can give you an answer in a limited form. I had contacts with
5 people who directly came to Laktasi, making complaints. Some of them
6 were members of the police. Some of them were refugee citizens, and they
7 complained that nobody interviewed them about what had happened to them;
8 for instance, in Vitez and Travnik, because people from these
9 municipalities came to them -- municipality of Laktasi.
10 Q. As refugees, they had information about crimes committed against
11 Serbs at the territories of Vitez or Travnik, but nobody conducted
12 interviews, nobody took their statements about the events.
13 A. Yes, that's what they were saying several months after their
14 arrival in Laktasi. Now, whether that was done the following year, or
15 several years later, yes, it may have been; but, at that time, in 1992,
16 they were complaining about it.
17 Q. Sir, when a police unit is resubordinated to a military unit, it
18 is a fact that, from the moment of such a resubordination, the employees
19 of the Ministry of Interior temporarily cease being official -- police
20 officials. They become regular soldiers. Am I right?
21 A. Yes. During the war, or in times of threat of war, let's call it
22 like that, any member of police or military, everybody needed to have
23 their wartime assignment. If someone had such an assignment in the
24 police, that meant that the person was member of the police until he is
25 sent to the front. Once you're sent to the front, you're part of the
1 military structure in the area where you have been sent to.
2 Q. In other words, should, for instance, from a public security
3 station, because it's necessary, because a request comes from the
4 military to send from the Laktasi public security station, let's say, be
5 sent or resubordinated to a military unit for the purpose of certain
6 military operation, these, let's say, ten men would be under the command
7 of an officer from the public security station in Laktasi. Am I right?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. The reason for that is to make sure that the members of the
10 police would go to perform this military assignment in an organised
11 manner. Am I correct in that?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Once the senior officer with his subordinated police officers
14 comes to the military unit, he get resubordinated to the military
15 commander of the military unit, and as of that moment, this officer from
16 the Laktasi public security station and his nine employees become part of
17 the military structure, become soldiers. Am I right?
18 A. They are responsible for all their actions to their military
19 senior officers. They do not get their orders from -- or through the
20 police structures but directly from the officers present at the front
22 Q. When you speak of officers, you mean military officers.
23 A. Yes. Although most often a unit that would be sent to the front
24 line would be a company-sized or a battalion. Very seldom it would be a
25 detachment or a platoon, something smaller.
1 Q. Let me ask you about another thing.
2 JUDGE HALL: Sorry, Mr. Zecevic, before you move on.
3 MR. ZECEVIC: Yes.
4 JUDGE HALL: I notice that the witness in response to your last
5 series of questions dealing with subordination, on several occasions or
6 probably on each occasion, referred to orders from the front or the --
7 being under the authority of the officers at the front.
8 I'm wondering, Mr. Witness, whether the -- you are limiting your
9 answers about to whom these police officers were then responsible to only
10 those subordinated to the military at the front, or does it apply
11 generally to shows subordinated to the military?
12 If you don't understand my question, I'll try and rephrase it.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Subordination to the military
14 refers to those police members who were, as part of police units, being
15 attached to military units at the front lines. The police behind the
16 front lines, in the interior, or Laktasi, for instance, which was a
17 municipality far away from the front lines, those public security
18 stations and its police officers did their jobs independently.
19 JUDGE HALL: Thank you.
20 MR. ZECEVIC:
21 Q. [Interpretation] Let's see if we can further assist the Trial
23 This concept of resubordination of police units under military
24 units based on requests sent by the military is not something that is
25 exclusively related to front line activities and combat with the enemy.
1 It can also refer to actions or operations of the military that are
2 carried out within the main part behind the enemy -- behind the front
4 A. Well, I don't remember any such cases. It might have involved,
5 for instance, fighting against sabotage groups or something like that.
6 And in such cases, of course, the army would ask for police units to help
7 them in carrying out the operation.
8 Q. In cases like that - and that is an excellent example, if I may
9 say, an incursion of a sabotage group or terrorist group inside the
10 territory - now in such a case, if a police unit would be resubordinated
11 to the army the rules would apply, the same rules would apply as it would
12 be in the case of the front line resubordination?
13 A. But, of course. Because you must avoid to have two chains of
14 command. One must know who is in command and who has to carry out the
16 Was I too fast?
17 MR. ZECEVIC: In my opinion, everything is recorded what the
18 witnesses said. But I am willing to ask the witness, if Your Honours
19 would like me to, to repeat his answers once again in order to ...
20 JUDGE HALL: I heard it. I'm satisfied. Thank you.
21 MR. ZECEVIC: Thank very much, Your Honour.
22 Q. [Interpretation] Sir, in cases of crimes committed during combat
23 operations in the area of responsibility of a military unit, exclusive
24 authority for investigating such crimes is with the military organs. Am
25 I right?
1 A. Yes, you are.
2 Q. When I speak of military security organs, I refer to military
3 police, military investigation organs, and military prosecution.
4 A. Yes. When we're talking about a criminal act, of crimes, it is
5 the military police and their on-site investigation team that has to
6 carry out on-site investigation, together with their investigative
7 organs, such as investigative judges, of their structure.
8 Q. It is a fact, isn't it, that the civilian police wasn't even
9 allowed to carry out on-site investigations within the area of
10 responsibility of a certain military unit?
11 A. Not on their own initiative. But based on a request of a
12 military prosecutor, when they required assistance of a technical nature,
13 yes, then the police would act based on their request.
14 Q. Thank you. Is it a fact, isn't it -- or, rather, let me ask you
16 Are you aware that some of the municipalities in the region of
17 Bosanski Krajina were for a longer period under military administration.
18 Municipalities such as Skender Vakuf, Teslic, and so on?
19 A. Flow of information at that time was very poor. Public media,
20 especially television or radio, audio, communications, they didn't have
21 enough power so there were a lot of interruptions, the problems with
22 daily press also existed. What I know, I know only indirectly. I was
23 not in the area of these municipalities, and I cannot fully comment on
24 how things functioned without proper argumentation about these
1 Q. Sir, you lived in the territory of the city of Banja Luka in
3 A. That's where I had my apartment; that's where I had my residence.
4 Q. I think that in the course of your testimony today you briefly
5 touch upon this matter, but it is a fact that there were cases -- that
6 there were power failures that lasted for over a month in one go; is that
8 A. Yes, that is correct. Banja Luka and the neighbouring
9 municipalities had power failures that would last up to at least on one
10 occasion, 40 days. I don't know whether that was during 1992 or 1993,
11 but that was a situation that kept occurring during the four years of the
13 Q. Very well. Sir, you made a supplemental statement on the 30th of
14 March and 1st April 2010 where you listed a number of municipalities
15 whose crime registers you reviewed. You remember that?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. I don't know if you need to see a copy of your statement.
18 MR. ZECEVIC: I don't know if my friends from the Prosecutor can
19 provide one, because I have the highlighted copy so that --
20 MR. OLMSTED: Yes, let me see.
21 MR. ZECEVIC: -- would be inappropriate. Thank you very much.
22 MR. OLMSTED: Let me see if I have an unhighlighted one as well.
23 Mr. Zecevic, will you be referring to the annexes or just the
24 body of it itself?
25 MR. ZECEVIC: Hmm, well, both. I'm afraid both.
1 MR. OLMSTED: Perhaps -- we do have it in e-court. We can bring
2 it up on the screen. That might be the best bet. I have the statement
3 itself, unmarked, but the annexes I have marked, unfortunately.
4 MR. ZECEVIC: Just bear with me, Your Honours, I'm sorry.
5 Q. [Interpretation] Your statement is under 65 ter number 10406, but
6 it might be easier if you have a hard copy in front of you.
7 A. Which page?
8 Q. Would you please look up in your annex Kotor Varos?
9 MR. OLMSTED: And if I may just intervene here, Kotor Varos is
10 one of the annexes that was revised. Do you want him to look at the
11 revised one or the original one?
12 MR. ZECEVIC: Well if I correctly understood there has been no
13 significant changes, and I couldn't -- I couldn't identify any
14 significant change in the -- in the revised version from Kotor Varos, in
15 respect to what I intend to ask him.
16 MR. OLMSTED: That's fine. If -- it might confuse him a little
17 bit because the format is a little bit different and I think a couple of
18 the entry numbers may have moved a little bit, but you're right, they are
19 minor changes. And I do have a B/C/S version of the revised ones. I can
20 give one to you too, if you like.
21 MR. ZECEVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. I have it. But you can
22 provide to the witness, in all fairness to the witness, in completeness
23 of his testimony.
24 Q. Sir, in this schematic about Kotor Varos, if I'm not mistaken -
25 and that's Annex 1 to your statement - you stated that by looking at the
1 crime register, you were able to establish that two crimes were committed
2 against non-Serbs; right?
3 A. Right.
4 Q. That eight crimes were committed by -- against non-Serbs by
5 unidentified perpetrators, referred to in the text as NN.
6 Would you repeat your answer?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. And you established that in one case, one police officer
9 committed the crime of rape.
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. At one point, you said, responding to a question from the
12 Prosecutor, if you remember the Prosecutor asked you about some old
13 archived case files. You said, of course it would be much better to have
14 insight into the whole case file than to just see it listed in the crime
15 register, because only then you would be able to really see why a certain
16 case was filed in the archives.
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. I have before me a total of 14 different criminal reports, or
19 criminal complaints from the area of Kotor Varos, pertaining to crimes
20 committed by Serbs, or by unidentified perpetrators, against non-Serbs,
21 and I'd like to show you as illustration some of them.
22 MR. ZECEVIC: 1D00-4006, please.
23 Q. This is a document submitted to the military prosecutor's office,
24 Banja Luka. It will appear on the screen in a minute. It was submitted
25 on the 23rd of September, 1992. And it bears the reception stamp of the
1 military prosecutor's office. It was sent by the Security Services
2 Centre, but it relates to a crime against civilian population committed
3 on the territory of Kotor Varos.
4 Did you see this document before?
5 A. No.
6 MR. ZECEVIC: [Interpretation] Could the witness please be shown
7 page 2.
8 Q. As you are not familiar with the document, I don't see --
9 A. I know what it's about. I mean, now that I see that it's the
10 Serdar case. It's just that I didn't see this document before.
11 Q. Thank you.
12 A. Because it is stated here that members of the Muslim Croat armed
13 forces committed a crime so they were treated as members of the armed
15 Q. So you're familiar with the case?
16 A. Yes, I'm familiar with it from other records and from
17 investigations that we did later for the purpose of submitting the
18 results to this Tribunal and the prosecutor's office of
20 MR. ZECEVIC: [Interpretation] Would there be any objection to
21 admitting this document. I agree that the witness said he hadn't seen
22 this document before but he is familiar with the incident.
23 MR. OLMSTED: I'm not certain what the value of this document
24 would be. This is the case that I showed the Trial Chamber during my
25 examination-in-chief in the log-book. We saw the log-book entry. The
1 witness stated that it isn't a log-book, it's part of his statistics,
2 it's a crime against Serb victims. And I think that's probably as far
3 as -- as the evidence needs to go.
4 JUDGE HALL: For what purpose, Mr. Zecevic, do you propose to
5 exhibit the --
6 MR. ZECEVIC: Well, Your Honours there have been some questions
7 from the Bench this morning about the jurisdiction of the military courts
8 concerning the -- the -- the members of the -- of the paramilitary
9 groups, and this is the document which confirms that the military court
10 had the jurisdiction on that. On the war crimes especially.
11 [Trial Chamber confers]
12 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zecevic, if I'm not wrong, if war crimes are
13 concerned, it is by all means the military jurisdiction, whether these
14 are paramilitaries that are the perpetrators or not. Isn't that right?
15 MR. ZECEVIC: Well, that is correct, Your Honour, because if that
16 is your understanding, then I'm not seeking to -- to -- to move the Trial
17 Chamber to introduce this document. Thank you.
18 MR. OLMSTED: I'll just note that that is not the position of the
19 Prosecution on that issue.
20 [Trial Chamber confers]
21 JUDGE HALL: Since we have been alerted that there will be an
22 argument on this issue, we will admit it.
23 MR. ZECEVIC: Thank you very much, Your Honours.
24 It's 1D00-4006.
25 THE REGISTRAR: This will be Exhibit 1D350, Your Honours.
1 MR. ZECEVIC: [Interpretation] Can the witness be shown
3 Q. This is a criminal report dated 28 April 1992, submitted to the
4 lower public prosecutor's office in Kotor Varos, and it's about causing
5 public danger, an incident against Zdravko Krgic, whose name would seem
6 to indicate that the man is a Croat. The date is 28 April 1992.
7 It's number 50 in the binder. Sorry, it's tab 62.
8 A. I have it.
9 Q. So this document features in your statistics and it's described
10 in your report.
11 A. Yes. It's KU number 50, causing public danger, and it's listed
12 as such in the statistics.
13 MR. ZECEVIC: [Interpretation] If there is no objection from the
14 Prosecution, I would like to tender this document just to have a full
15 picture of the situation as described in the evidence of this witness.
16 [Trial Chamber confers]
17 MR. OLMSTED: Well, I haven't had a chance to review the
18 document. I really can't -- it's hard for me to object one way or
19 another, but I'm just wondering whether, you know, we're going to be
20 trying to admit every case file that he identifies in this -- in his
21 report, and to what end, ultimately, that will serve as the information
22 is clearly spelled out in the annex itself.
23 JUDGE HALL: Well, this would be two so far, so we will admit
24 this as we did the previous one.
25 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit 1D351, Your Honours.
1 MR. ZECEVIC:
2 Q. [Interpretation] The next document that I have is KU 76/92. Just
3 check if it's on your list.
4 A. Yes. Murder, KU 76.
5 Q. The murder of a non-Serb.
6 A. Right.
7 Q. The man's name was Baric. Jakob Baric.
8 A. Yes.
9 MR. ZECEVIC: [Interpretation] I'd just like to identify the
10 document, 1D00-4543; tab 63. I will not tender it because I understand
11 that it's the position of the Trial Chamber that I should tender just a
12 few documents as illustration, not all of them.
13 Q. Could the witness be shown tab 64, document 1D00-4561, and its KU
14 number is 80/92.
15 A. Two victims, murder. It's in the statistics.
16 Q. Murder of Niko and Mara Osulic, from Cepak, Kotor Varos
17 municipality, Croats.
18 The next document is already an exhibit, 1D39, tab 65, KU 81/92.
19 A. It's in the statistics, causing public danger.
20 Q. And the injured party is the Roman Catholic Church in
21 Kotor Varos.
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. The next tab is 66; 1D00-0834, KU 83/92.
24 A. Murder. It's in the statistics.
25 Q. Murder of Anto Draguljic.
1 MR. ZECEVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I should like to
2 tender this document because we have heard evidence from a witness who
3 was closely related to the murdered man who is the subject of this
4 criminal report.
5 I could say the name, but I'm afraid she might have testified in
6 private session. Or should we move into private session?
7 [Trial Chamber confers]
8 JUDGE HALL: Mr. Zecevic, beyond the fact that this was referred
9 to -- this incident was referred to by another witness, is there any --
10 how does the -- the -- the admission of this assist us? Is there some
11 greater connection?
12 MR. ZECEVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, we have testimony
13 involving this murder, a lady who testified here, testified about the
14 very fact, and this criminal report was submitted to the relevant public
15 prosecutor's office by the police of Kotor Varos, and one can see
16 explained all the elements of the said crime. I believe it is relevant
17 for the proceedings before the Trial Chamber.
18 [Trial Chamber confers]
19 JUDGE HALL: Mr. Zecevic, it's that time of day. We will defer a
20 ruling on your application until tomorrow.
21 MR. ZECEVIC: I understand, Your Honours.
22 Q. [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Vasic. We'll continue tomorrow.
23 JUDGE HALL: Mr. Vasic we are about to take the adjournment for
24 today. You, having been sworn as a witness, you cannot, until you are
25 released, have any communication whatever with counsel from either side,
1 and in such conversations you may have with persons outside of the
2 courtroom, you cannot discuss your testimony.
3 We will resume in this courtroom tomorrow morning at 9.00.
4 [The witness stands down]
5 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.51 p.m.,
6 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 26th day of
7 August, 2010, at 9.00 a.m.