1 Wednesday, 6 June 2007
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 2.21 p.m.
6 JUDGE PARKER: Good afternoon. We trust that in the intervening
7 days counsel have been able to get on top of the matters that were
8 creating difficulties and which led to us having the interruption.
9 Your next witness, I see, is here, Mr. Saxon.
10 MR. SAXON: That's correct, Your Honour. The next Prosecution
11 witness is Ms. Vilma Ruskovska.
12 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
13 Could the witness please stand.
14 Would you please read aloud the affirmation that is on the card
15 given to you now.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
17 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
18 WITNESS: VILMA RUSKOVSKA
19 [Witness answered through interpreter]
20 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you. Please sit down.
21 I take it you're receiving a translation in a language that you're
22 more familiar with.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
24 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
25 Now Mr. Saxon has some questions for you.
1 Mr. Saxon.
2 Examination by Mr. Saxon:
3 Q. Is your name Vilma Ruskovska?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. And have you lived your entire life in what is now Macedonia?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. And is it your ethnic background Macedonian?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Are you currently a deputy public prosecutor in the department for
10 organised the crime in the republic prosecutor's office in Skopje?
11 A. In the public prosecutor general office in the Republic of
12 Macedonia. All the rest is correct.
13 Q. Okay. Thank you for that. And in August of 2001, were you a
14 deputy public prosecutor in the basic public prosecutor's office in
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Do you recall providing a statement to members of the Office of
18 the Prosecutor of this Tribunal in December of 2005?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And on this past Monday, the 4th of June, 2007, was that statement
21 certified by a presiding officer from the registry of this Tribunal?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. And, at that time, did you have an opportunity to review a copy of
24 your statement in your native Macedonian language?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. And, at that time, this past Monday, did you make an addendum to
2 your statement which corrected and clarified certain portions?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. And, when read together, are the contents of your certified
5 statement and the addendum true and correct?
6 A. Yes.
7 MR. SAXON: Your Honour, at this time, I would tender the
8 statement of Ms. Ruskovska that has been certified under Rule 92 bis.
9 JUDGE PARKER: It will be received.
10 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P235, Your Honours.
11 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
12 MR. SAXON: I'm told that the interpreters did not hear what the
13 court officer just said.
14 THE REGISTRAR: I apologise. Exhibit P235, Your Honours.
15 MR. SAXON: Your Honours, Witness Vilma Ruskovska is an ethnic
16 Macedonian and a deputy public prosecutor in the general public
17 prosecutor's office in Skopje. In August of 2001, the witness held a
18 position of deputy public prosecutor in the basic public prosecutor's
19 office in Skopje.
20 This witness's evidence speaks to her professional activities in
21 relation to the events arising out of the attack on the village of
22 Ljuboten on 12th of August, 2001. The witness describes the work
23 performed by her and other public prosecutors and investigative judges
24 that led to the production of criminal indictments against a number of
25 Ljuboten villagers for alleged participation in terrorist acts.
1 The witness speaks of the inability of the investigating
2 authorities, at that time, to conduct an on-site investigation in Ljuboten
3 after the 12th of August, 2001. The witness also states that her office
4 made no efforts to interview the police officers who were deployed in
5 Ljuboten in August 2001, and she explains the reasons why no such efforts
6 were made.
7 Q. Ms. Ruskovska, I just have a few questions for you.
8 MR. SAXON: And if I could ask that the addendum to
9 Ms. Ruskovska's 92 bis statement be shown, if that would be possible.
10 Q. Ms. Ruskovska, do you see a copy of that addendum in your language
11 on the right side of the screen in front of you?
12 A. Yes.
13 MR. SAXON: I notice that one of the witness's microphones is not
14 turned on. Perhaps if I could ask the usher to turn on the microphone on
15 her right side, please. Thank you so much.
16 Q. I would like to briefly ask you about what is listed in item 4 in
17 this addendum. In that paragraph, in those additional sentences that were
18 added to paragraph 13 of your statement, you say the following. There's a
19 sentence, it's actually the second sentence of that of that paragraph, and
20 it begins: "I also received a threat from the NLA. For example, either
21 in late July 2001 or after the events in Ljuboten, I received a telephone
22 call in my office. The caller was a man who threatened to come and kill
23 me and rape me."
24 I'd just like to explore this with you for a moment, please.
25 Whoever was calling you, they knew where you worked?
1 A. Certainly.
2 Q. They knew your telephone number?
3 A. They called the phone number of the public prosecutor's office,
4 basic public prosecutor's office. It is listed in the phone book.
5 Q. How did you feel after you received that telephone call?
6 A. I was frightened.
7 Q. Did you continue to do your work?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Why?
10 A. I don't understand your question.
11 Q. You had received a threat, which made you frightened, yet you
12 decided to continue with your professional responsibilities. Why?
13 A. Yes. You, as a Prosecutor, you know that our profession is such.
14 We do receive threats, but we need to continue working having this in
15 mind. We either accept our job as it is, or we discontinue working at
17 Q. At that time in 2001, did you carry a fire-arm?
18 A. No.
19 Q. Can I ask, approximately, how tall you are?
20 A. 160.
21 MR. SAXON: Your Honour, at this time, I have no further
23 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
24 Ms. Residovic do you have questions?
25 Cross-examination by Ms. Residovic:
1 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honours.
2 Before I begin my cross-examination of the witness, Ms. Vilma Ruskovska, I
3 wish to inform Your Honours that only I will examine Ms. Ruskovska. The
4 Counsel of Mr. Tarculovski will not make use of their time. Therefore, I
5 ask Your Honours to allow me to put all my questions because, apart from
6 the fact that the witness was performing a certain duty in 2001, she is,
7 if I may so express myself, an expert witness of sorts who can explain to
8 us the overall procedure.
9 She is the only representative of the public prosecutor's office
10 to be called here, so I ask that I be allowed to put all my questions.
11 Thank you.
12 JUDGE PARKER: We are grateful for Mr. Apostolski's cooperation.
13 You certainly will be able to have a more expansive time than otherwise,
14 but we ask you not to forget the time.
15 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Your Honours.
16 Q. [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Ms. Ruskovska.
17 A. Good afternoon.
18 Q. My name is Edina Residovic, and I appear for Mr. Ljube Boskoski.
19 We have come across each other before, have we not?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Ms. Ruskovska, you understand the language I'm speaking. I
22 understand the language you are speaking. For this reason, your response
23 my question might come very quickly. I ask you, however, to bear in mind
24 that both my question and your response have to be interpreted, so that
25 Their Honours and the other participants in these proceedings can
1 understand what we are saying. That's why I ask you to wait a little
2 until my question is interpreted, and only then to begin your answer. Did
3 you understand me?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. When answering a question by my learned friend, you said that you
6 are now working on organised crime and corruption in the public
7 prosecutor's office of the Republic of Macedonia. Is this correct?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. You have been working in the public prosecutor's office for nearly
10 17 years; is that correct?
11 A. Yes, more than 17 years.
12 Q. And as you have already told my learned friend, in 2001, you were
13 deputy prosecutor in the public prosecutor's office in Skopje; is that
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. At that time, the lower public prosecutor's office in Skopje was
17 carrying out its prosecutions before the lower court in Skopje; is that
19 A. Yes, before the Basic Court Skopje I and Basic Court Skopje II.
20 Q. In view of your professional duties, which you're still carrying
21 out today, you are certainly aware of the legal rights and
22 responsibilities of the organs participating in criminal proceedings in
23 the Republic of Macedonia. Is this correct?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Then you're aware of the rights and responsibilities of the organs
1 conducting investigations and carrying out certain investigative
2 activities in the investigative phase of the proceedings; is that correct?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Ms. Ruskovska, is it correct that all the organs in the Republic
5 of Macedonia participating in criminal proceedings are duty bound do
6 comply with the law of the Republic of Macedonia?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Is it correct that when conducting criminal proceedings a strict
9 legal procedure has to be respected, and no organ can undertake to carry
10 out the duties and responsibilities of another organ unless this is
11 provided for by law. Is this correct?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Is it correct, Ms. Ruskovska, that persons acting contrary to the
14 law would be violating the criminal procedure; and under the Law on
15 Criminal Procedure of the Republic of Macedonia, a violation of the
16 criminal procedure can be a ground of appeal and the judgement can be
17 rendered null and void for this reason. Is that correct?
18 A. I would just like to say that if they act in contravention to the
19 law, if they act in breach of the criminal code, they will be held
20 criminally responsible and criminally prosecuted. But if they act in
21 breach to the law of criminal, then that procedure will not be valid
22 before the court.
23 Q. Thank you. In 2001, the Republic of Macedonia was facing
24 terrorist attacks by terrorist Albanian groups from Macedonia and some
25 groups from Kosovo. Is this correct?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. The whole country, the Republic of Macedonia, was not affected by
3 the attacks, but the attacks affected the town of Tetovo, the area around
4 Skopje, and the town of Kumanovo. So this would be the north and
5 north-western parts of the country. Is that correct?
6 A. It is correct. It is only that in the vicinity of Skopje towards
7 Kumanovo it was taking place, while the other part towards Velic and the
8 other areas were not affected. There was nothing there. So not the
9 entire surrounds of Skopje.
10 Q. Thank you. Is it correct that at that time in the Republic of
11 Macedonia no state of war had been declared?
12 A. It was not declared.
13 Q. Because these were isolated terrorist attacks and because no state
14 of war had been declared in the country, the criminal proceedings you
15 participated in were carried out according to domestic law?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. At that time you, as deputy prosecutor; your colleagues; and
18 judges in the court, before which you were acting, were not even
19 considering applying international humanitarian law to certain events.
20 Would that be correct?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. You have already said that the competences of various organs are
23 prescribed by law. If I say that the public prosecutor's office is an
24 independent organ carrying out its activities in compliance with the law,
25 I would be correct, would I not?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. The public prosecutor and his deputies acting in criminal
3 proceedings are elected by the Macedonian parliament to which they are
4 responsibility; is that correct?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. The Prosecutor and his deputies are authorised and have certain
7 powers in criminal proceedings, and these are precisely regulated by the
8 Law on the Public Prosecutor's Office and the Law on Criminal Procedure;
9 is that correct?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. In the course of your work and the performance of your duties, you
12 cooperate with other state organs, including certainly the Ministry of
13 Interior; is that correct?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. The Ministry of Interior does not have any kind of authority over
16 the prosecutor's office or any powers over its work; is that correct?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Authorised officials of the Ministry of Interior also perform
19 their duties in compliance with the Law on the Ministry of Interior and
20 the Law on Criminal Procedure; is that correct?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. As you have been active for many years, it is clear to you that
23 most police work, especially detection, falls under the purview of
24 authorised officials in the various sectors and departments of the
25 Interior Affairs; is that correct?
1 A. Yes.
2 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, to make things
3 easier for the witness and to speed up my cross-examination, I have
4 prepared a set of documents I wish to put to the witness. I have a binder
5 for all the members of the Trial Chamber, one for the witness; and for the
6 purposes of e-court and the transcript, I will give all the 65 ter numbers
7 or exhibit numbers. But the documents are also separated by tabs which
8 have numbers. So make it easier to find them, I will also give the tab
9 number of the document.
10 Thank you.
11 Q. Ms. Ruskovska, would you please now take a look at 65 ter number
12 1D-180, Macedonian page 1D-1951, English 1D-1963. It is found under tab 1
13 of the binder which is before you. This is the Law on the Public
14 Prosecutor's Office which was in force in 2001. Do you see this?
15 A. Yes.
16 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] It seems it's not in e-court.
17 This is exhibit 65 ter number 1D-180, Macedonian page 1D-1951, and the
18 page in English 1D-1963.
19 Q. In Article 5 on this page, it says that at the proposal of the
20 government, the Macedonian Parliament appoints the public prosecutor and
21 his deputies, as you said. Is that correct?
22 A. Yes.
23 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we now please turn the page
24 and look at 1D -- Macedonian 1953 and English 1D-1964 -- no, 1963, excuse
1 Q. Please look at Article 15 on the public prosecutor's office.
2 Is it correct that this Article prescribes the rights, duties and,
3 powers of the public prosecutor?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Yes, of course. These rights and duties refer both to pre-trial
6 proceedings and to the stage where the criminal proceedings are conducted;
7 is that correct?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Ms. Ruskovska, the question may be superfluous; but to clarify
10 criminal procedure in the Republic of Macedonia, I wish to ask you: Is it
11 correct that in compliance with the Law on Criminal Procedure of the
12 Republic of Macedonia, criminal proceedings begin when a decision on an
13 investigation is carried out -- is issued against a certain person because
14 there are grounds to suspect that that person has committed a crime. Is
15 that when criminal proceedings begin?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. The procedure that precedes the issuing of such a decision in
18 compliance with the law is the basis for the pre-trial proceedings?
19 A. Yes. Pre-trial procedure, yes.
20 Q. In this period, also in the pre-trial proceedings, the public
21 prosecutor has significant powers; is that correct?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. The Prosecutor has such powers in connection to detection and in
24 guiding other organs in detecting the perpetrators of crimes; is that
1 A. Well, essentially detection of crime is done by or organs. We
2 can, for instance, ask. If we hear that a crime has been committed, we
3 could then order that the competence institution, the institution
4 competent for that, conducts the pre-trial procedure, so to detect whether
5 somebody really perpetrated a crime, which crime et cetera, while the
6 actual prosecutor's office is still not an operational body. To detect
7 crime, we depend on other state organs, the police, customs administration
8 and other ministries.
9 Q. Thank you for the clarification. Article 15, in fact, describes
10 the duty of the prosecutor, and it says that the public prosecutor's
11 office takes care of prompt and efficient revealing of criminal and other
12 punishable acting and their perpetrators, and this is what you have just
13 described. Is that correct?
14 A. Yes, but in cooperation with other competent state organs.
15 Q. Correct. Competency is carried out in compliance with Article 16,
16 which states that the prosecutor carries out this duty in cooperation with
17 other bodies for detecting crimes and other competent bodies and legal
18 persons. Is that correct?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. This same Article 15 also establishes the powers of the
21 prosecutor's office in criminal proceedings. The public prosecutor
22 submits or files a motion to initiate a criminal investigation. In
23 compliance with the law, he takes measures and activities to ensure the
24 proper conduct of the proceedings. He issues an indictment. He declares
25 regular and irregular legal remedies and means and undertakes other
1 activities. Is that correct?
2 A. Yes. I will just correct you with regards to the economic crime.
3 We do not file indictments. It is the other competent bodies that do
4 this. Only if a criminal report indicates that it is not a crime,
5 criminal offence, rather, an economic crime, then we do it; then we file
6 charges, but this is an exception. Otherwise, all the rest that you said
7 is correct.
8 Q. Thank you. Would you now please look at the document under tab 2
9 in your binder.
10 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] And this is 65 ter 1D-181,
11 Macedonian page 1D-1968, page in English 1D-1992.
12 Your Honours, this document is also Exhibit P88, but this exhibit
13 does not have a translation into English, which is why we have extracted
14 the articles we intend to use with the witness and provided an official
15 translation so that Your Honours can follow.
16 This is the reason why we have presented it as a special
17 Defence -- as a separate Defence exhibit.
18 JUDGE PARKER: We're grateful for that, Ms. Residovic. Thank you
19 very much.
20 Could I just mention that you will appreciate that we do not
21 really need a basic course on criminal procedure. It would be useful to
22 have the main provisions pointed out to us, but I don't think you need to
23 spend a lot of time with the witness going over what the provisions mean.
24 As long as they're identified in the evidence, they are pretty ease to
25 follow, so I'm just letting you know that you can move along fairly
1 quickly through this, if it will help you.
2 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Your Honours.
3 I will dwell on only a few of the provisions, because our client is
4 charged with failing to take measures so that some of the provisions in
5 the Law on Criminal Procedure relate to issues of the competences of
6 various organs in carrying out the procedure of detection, as well as the
7 powers of the Ministry of Interior. So I will very briefly put my
8 questions, by your leave.
9 Thank you.
10 Q. I asked you to look at this document. And in the law on page
11 1D-1968, Article 42, the version in English is on page 1D-1992. Have you
12 found it?
13 A. Yes, I have.
14 Q. The powers of the public prosecutor are again provided for, this
15 time under the Code of Criminal Procedure for the Republic of Macedonia;
16 is that correct?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. In point 1 of this Article, again, the responsibilities of the
19 public prosecutors are mentioned in the pre-trial procedure, so it is
20 obliged to take the necessary measures in the detection of the criminal
21 acts and of the perpetrators and in order to direct the pre-trial
22 procedure; is that correct?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. In the other points, the competences are made -- are delineated
25 for the roles of the prosecutor in the criminal procedure; is that
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. I would like to ask you to see the provisions of Article 140.
4 That is found in the Macedonian page 1D-1974; in the English version, page
5 1D-1996 -- 1997; Article 142, that is.
6 It is -- it stipulate what the prosecutor needs to do if he
7 receives a certain criminal report or when he realises that certain
8 criminal act might be perpetrated; is that correct?
9 A. As far as I can see, the -- this Article stipulates the
10 competences of the Ministry of Interior, not of the prosecutor, in the
11 detection of the criminal acts.
12 Q. I apologise. That Article regulates the duties of the Ministry of
13 Interior. I apologise.
14 Is it correct, Ms. Ruskovska, that all state bodies and
15 institutions have the duty to report crimes that are prosecuted ex
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. This Article that we're looking at - and you warned me rightly,
19 and the mistake was mine - speaks about the role in the detection of crime
20 of the Ministry of Interior. In relation to this, I wish to ask you: Is
21 it correct, Ms. Ruskovska, that the Ministry of Interior could not
22 interrogate citizens when they appear as witnesses?
23 A. No. They can only take a statement from them if we want to
24 voluntarily give the statement, and that statement is not valid before the
25 court. But to interrogate them as witnesses, no.
1 Q. You have just stated that the statement would not be valid before
2 the court. Actually, all the statements of suspects and other persons
3 must be separated from the court file and the court's decision must not be
4 based on them; is that correct?
5 Is it only the court, the institution that could interview the
6 person in the capacity of a witness; is that correct?
7 A. According to the Law on Criminal Procedure, that was valid until
8 2004. Only the court, that is, only the investigating judge or a
9 presiding judge on the main trial, were able to take a statement. Whether
10 from an accused or from a witness, that will be valid and would serve as
11 evidence before the court.
12 With the changes of the Criminal Code of December 2004, now the
13 public prosecutor can also take statements, both from accused as well as
14 from witnesses, of course, sticking to the procedure. If it is -- if that
15 is an accused, his counsel should be present, and the statements given in
16 the premises of the public prosecutors office and before the public
17 prosecutor can also serve as evidence. But let me repeat, this is
18 according to the Criminal Code that was adopted in December 2004 -- the
19 Law on Criminal Procedure. I apologise.
20 Q. Thank you very much for this clarification. Maybe I forgot to
21 mention at the beginning. I will ask you to speak about the Law on
22 Criminal Procedure and the competences of individual bodies in 2001 at the
23 time when the events that are noted in the indictment took place.
24 Is it also correct that the court is the only body that could
25 issue a decision on detention of a person?
1 A. Yes, upon a proposal of a public prosecutor. But only the public
2 prosecutor is the one who gives the proposal and the decision. Whether a
3 person will be detained or not is made by the investigating judge.
4 Q. The authorised officers of the Ministry of Interior could keep a
5 person for up to 24 hours, and after that only if they had the approval of
6 the investigating judge; is that correct?
7 A. No. They were able to hold the person for 24 hours, and after the
8 24 hours they should either file criminal charges or should set the person
9 free. If they file charges against the person, so before the 24-hour
10 deadline would expire, they were supposed to take the person before an
11 investigating judge; first, to bring the charges before the public
12 prosecutor, so that they could study it and assess whether there is a base
13 or suspicion whether a criminal act has been perpetrated.
14 And if they assess -- if the prosecutor assesses, then he files a
15 request for initiation of an investigation with the measure of detention,
16 and at that time the person is brought before the investigating judge,
17 who, after the -- the interview, would decide whether the person would be
18 put in detention or not.
19 Q. I would like to ask you now to look at the Article 144 that have
20 you in front of you, which I read and quoted by mistake as a provision
21 governing the situation covered in Article 142. Actually, this Article is
22 found in the Macedonian page 1D-1975, and the English version is 1D-998.
23 So, Ms. Ruskovska, I'm particularly interested in the situation
24 stipulating the competences of the prosecutor when they learn about a
25 crime that might have been committed.
1 Tell me, is it correct that the absolute rule, a decision-maker
2 about the situation and the course the investigation takes regarding a
3 crime is the public prosecutor?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. His decision could not be influenced by the Ministry of Interior,
6 the police?
7 A. No.
8 Q. If the prosecutor believes that the evidence is sufficient, then
9 they file a motion to start an investigation; is that correct?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. If they are completely clear that the evidence does not indicate
12 that the crime has been committed, then the criminal report is rejected;
13 is that correct?
14 A. They may request from the police for additions of the criminal
15 report with more evidence or to drop it, to reject it.
16 Q. In that situation, when the evidence is insufficient, they could
17 obtain new evidence on their own or through other bodies, but most
18 frequently this is down through the bodies of the Interior; is that
20 A. Most frequently, yes, but it depends on it's type of the criminal
21 act, so we may ask also the customs administrations, various ministries.
22 Q. When you are seeking verification of some facts or admission of
23 additional information, or if you are seeking that additional actions are
24 taken, the prosecutor's office always addresses the bodies from within the
25 Ministry of Interior that are directly involved in detection of crimes and
1 perpetrators of crime, so the departments of the Ministry of Interior or
2 the sectors for Internal Affairs of a given city. Is that correct?
3 A. Depending on the criminal charges or report who has filed the
4 criminal report, that is the service that the police contacts with.
5 Q. The ministry, at a state level, generally does not have duties and
6 responsibilities to take certain actions related to criminal offences and
7 perpetrators. Is that correct?
8 A. No. That are the police stations. It used to be like that at
9 that time.
10 Q. And especially the minister does not have any effective role to
11 play in the detection of crime and perpetrators. He's, if you could agree
12 with me, mainly a political figure who manages the ministry as a whole,
13 while does not run effective control over the persons who are detecting
14 crime and perpetrators thereof. Is that correct?
15 A. Yes. For example, for more than ten years as a prosecutor, I have
16 not conducted any minister in that time in respect to my work.
17 Q. Thank you. Is it correct, Ms. Ruskovska, that the investigation
18 is open only -- only against a particular person, and only upon reasonable
19 ground to suspect that they have committed a crime that is prosecuting ex
20 officio. So the perpetrator must be known?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. I would ask you now to look at the Article 150 in 1D-1977,
23 Macedonian, and 1D-1999. That is the Article 150, and that is the Article
24 that stipulates what you have just stated, that the investigation is
25 opened only against a perpetrator who is known. Is that correct?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. The following Article, Article 151, says that the investigation is
3 conducted only upon a proposal by the public prosecutor; is that correct?
4 A. Yes.
5 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] For the sake of transcript, this
6 Article is found on Macedonian page 1D-1978, and the English, 1D-1999 to
8 Page 20, line 3, I'm not sure that the translation is accurate,
9 because my question is, and it is noted in the legal provision, that the
10 investigation is run only against a known perpetrator, while in this line
11 it is noted that the investigation is open only against a particular
13 Q. When the investigating judge brings a decision to conduct an
14 investigation, could you agree with me then the investigating judge is the
15 dominus litis, the one who makes the decisions about all activities that
16 need to be taken in the course of the investigation?
17 A. The investigating judge passes a decision to initiate a -- an
18 investigation not a ruling, and the other part of the question is correct.
19 Q. The investigating judge has the duty to tender all the evidence
20 that the Prosecutor proposes, also the defence; and they could also decide
21 on tendering their own evidence, is that correct, or taking their own
22 actions. Is that correct?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. The Ministry of Interior does not have any competences and could
25 make no requests to the investigating judge; is that correct?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Especially, the Minister of the Interior has no competences over
3 the investigating judge or the court?
4 A. No.
5 Q. Actually, the situation is quite the opposite. The investigating
6 judge could request the police to take certain actions, and then the
7 police has the duty to render assistance to the court; is that correct?
8 A. Yes..
9 Q. I would like to ask now -- ask you now to look in the same binder
10 under the same number.
11 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] The Article 170 --
12 INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: 180.
13 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] -- Macedonian page 1D -- 170 is
14 what I said. And it is located in 1D-1983, and the English on the page
16 Q. And you have just answered my previous question. So tell me
17 whether this is the provision of the Law on Criminal Procedure that
18 establishes that the investigating judge may ask for assistance to be
19 rendered from a body within the Ministry of Interior and that they have
20 the duty to render that assistance?
21 A. Yes, but not only from the police, but from any other state body.
22 Q. Thank you. And briefly, with one or two more questions, we will
23 dwell on the Law on Criminal Procedure. The investigating judge who has
24 stated is running a procedure related to a person and an offence with
25 regards to which the prosecutor asked that the procedure is open. But is
1 it correct that if the investigating judge, in the course of the actual
2 investigation, learns that some other criminal offence has been
3 perpetrated or another perpetrator was involved, then they have the duty
4 to inform the public prosecutor about that. Is that correct?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. They do not have any obligation and never do it in the practice to
7 inform a body of the Ministry of Interior about that; is that correct?
8 A. No. They inform the public prosecutor's office. When the
9 investigating judge has enough evidence in that -- in his information, the
10 public prosecutor can expand the investigation for one more criminal act
11 or for one more person. The police has nothing to do with it.
12 Q. The police would have something to do with it only if the public
13 prosecutor, as stipulated in 144 of Law on Criminal Procedure which
14 prescribes describes the competences, would request the police to render
15 any assistance?
16 A. If the investigating judge learns something, he informs the public
17 prosecutor on that. If the findings of the investigating judge are
18 insufficient to expand the investigation against another person or for
19 another act, then the public prosecutor could request the police to
20 conduct certain examinations; that is to say, to gather evidence that will
21 be needed by the public prosecutor.
22 As I said, if they have enough evidence in the investigating
23 procedure, then the public prosecutor does not inform the police, but
24 files a request to -- to expand the investigation for another person or
25 for another criminal act.
1 Q. Thank you. And, otherwise, in the courtroom where the
2 investigating judge presents the evidence, the public prosecutor is
3 present as well, as the accused and the counsel for the accused; is that
5 A. Yes. And the public prosecutor is there only when there are
6 serious criminal acts, actually the cases which include detention.
7 Otherwise, we're not present at all of the investigations.
8 Q. But whether the public prosecutor is present or not, they make
9 their own decision; is that correct?
10 A. Yes. The investigating judge sends an invitation and informs us
11 about every investigation, when the investigation would start, and at what
12 time. So we are informed, and it is up to us whether we are going to be
13 present at the investigation or not.
14 Q. The investigating judge never informs a minister of the Interior
15 about any investigation or about any actions, and they could have no
16 information about the statements that accused or a witness has made before
17 the investigating judge; is that correct?
18 A. No -- no, it is correct.
19 Q. And the police also has no right to perform inspection of the
20 court documents.
21 A. They can just inspect the court files. Only the authorised
22 counsel can do it, and the accused himself.
23 Q. You just said that the investigating judge could request some
24 actions to be taken by the Ministry of Interior; and if they do not
25 request this, then the Ministry of Interior has no legal possibility to
1 learn what was important within that procedure or to take any actions that
2 they are not authorised for. Is that correct?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Considering that, as you stated, the investigation is conducted
5 against a known perpetrator. Is it correct in situations when the
6 perpetrator is unknown, the court can take only certain investigative
7 measures upon a proposal of the public prosecutor; is that correct?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. The decision to take investigating actions such as exhumation and
10 post-mortem could be made only by the competent court and only upon a
11 proposal of the public prosecutor; is that correct?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. I would like to ask that we see what you have just testified about
14 in the Article 148; in the Macedonian, page 1D-1977, and the English page
15 1D-1999. That is the Article 148, which speaks about the only
16 possibilities that the prosecutor and the judge have in a situation where
17 the perpetrator is unknown. Is that correct?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. There was no legal possibility for the police to make a motion to
20 the investigating judge suggesting that certain investigating actions are
21 taken; and if that would happen, for the Prosecutor and for the judge,
22 this could only be an initiative for them to start doing their own job; is
23 that correct?
24 A. Would you -- would you please make the question more precise?
25 What exactly do you have in mind?
1 Q. We said that the Prosecutor can request the carrying out of a
2 certain investigative activity; is that correct? The Ministry of
3 Interior, that is the police, cannot make such a request of the
4 investigating judge; is that correct?
5 A. That's correct.
6 Q. Should the police, for example, submit a request to the public
7 prosecutor to carry out an exhumation and the post-mortem, the prosecutor
8 would understand this as an initiative, an attempt, by the police to
9 encourage the prosecutor to carry out his legal duty; that is, to submit
10 such a request to the investigating judge.
11 A. Yes. That will only be considered an initiative.
12 Q. Thank you. Ms. Ruskovska, please tell me, is it correct that an
13 investigating judge can undertake certain investigative activities even
14 before he issues a decision on the conduct of an investigation, most often
15 questioning the accused or carrying out an on-site investigation. Is that
17 A. So an on-site investigation is conducted when there are certain
18 information that an act has been committed, a criminal act has been
19 commit, severe criminal act with legal consequences most often. And the
20 on-site inspection does not mean that a criminal charge will follow. It
21 is possible that the perpetrator is dead, so the very on-site
22 investigation of the prosecutor and the investigating judge does not
23 necessarily mean a filing of a criminal charges.
24 So if after the on-site investigation we have a perpetrator who
25 can be accused, then the police files a criminal report against that
1 person to the public prosecutor.
2 Q. If we go back to what you have just explained, would it be correct
3 to say that if the police were to learn of an event that might be a
4 criminal offence, they would have to inform the public prosecutor and the
5 investigating judge immediately, and it would be up to them then to decide
6 whether to carry out an on-site investigation or not?
7 A. So when an authorised official would learn about the commitment of
8 a certain criminal ability, they inform the duty operative centre. The
9 duty operative centre calls the public prosecutor on duty and informs him
10 about the event, what has happened, and the place where it has happened;
11 then it is up to the public prosecutor to decide whether an on-site
12 investigation is needed, or the investigation will be left to the police.
13 If the public prosecutor thinks it is necessary to make an on-site
14 investigation, then they inform the investigating judge and then they do
15 the on-site investigation jointly.
16 Q. So by informing the investigating judge and the prosecutor, the
17 police have performed their legal duty, and the further decision is up to
18 the prosecutor and the investigating judge; is that correct?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. If the investigating judge decides to carry out an on-site
21 investigation himself, he is the only organ setting up an investigation
22 team, and he decides on everything done in the investigation. The police
23 are only there to assist him. Is this correct?
24 A. If the public prosecutor and the investigating judge go on the
25 site, then depending on the nature of the crime, the investigating judge
1 informs the post-mortem doctor on duty, the biologist, the chemist, the
2 crime scene techniques, and everything that is needed in order to conduct
3 the on-site investigation. So all the experts that are needed on the
4 spot, with the very investigation, the very investigation is managed by
5 the investigating judge.
6 Q. And, finally, in this situation, the police assist the court?
7 A. Yes. It only assists, nothing else.
8 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] I would now ask us to look at
9 document -- the document under tab 5. This document is 65 ter 103,
10 Macedonian page N000-7352, and English N000-73P2-ET [as interpreted].
11 May we look at the second page of this document, please.
12 Q. You know Dr. Zlatko Jackovski from the Institute for Forensic
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. If you look at the first page, again, you will see that it says
16 here that, "On the 12th of August, 2001, at about 1800 hours, we were
17 informed by the investigating judge, Ognen Stavrev, from primarily court
18 Skopje I, that in the village of Ljuboten, region of Skopje, we should go
19 out for an on-site inspection where five dead bodies of Albanian
20 terrorists were located."
21 If we look at this first sentence, in connection with what you
22 have just said, is it correct that the investigating judge, in fact, when
23 he decided to carry out this on-site investigation, invited the experts of
24 the Institute of Forensic Medicine to accompany him. Is that correct?
25 A. I already said, and I will repeat it. So always when it is -- if
1 there is a doubt that a murder has been committed, there may be a suicide
2 with a fire-arms, always the post-mortem doctors are called together with
3 the investigating judge and with the deputy public prosecutor.
4 Q. Thank you. Could you now please look at the previous number in
5 this binder, number 4.
6 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] 65 ter 153, N000-7344, and English
7 is N000-7344-ET.
8 Q. Do you know Milan Gelevski?
9 A. Yes. We worked together for a long time.
10 Q. He was also a deputy public prosecutor.
11 A. Yes. At that time, both of us were deputies of the public
13 Q. This Official Note of the 15th of August, 2001, if you take a look
14 at it, shows, does it not, that the deputy prosecutor also tried to go
15 on-site with the investigating judge and carry out an on-site
16 investigation in the village of Ljuboten; but for the reasons listed in
17 this Official Note, the investigation was not carried out. Is that
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Would you please go back for yet another tab, number 3. This is
22 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] The Macedonian page number -- this
23 is Exhibit 1D6, and the page is N000-7351; that's the second page of the
24 document. In English, it's N000-7351-ET.
25 Q. You also know Ognen Stavrev, do you not? Ognen Stavrev, in 2001,
1 was the investigating judge in Basic Court II in Skopje; is that correct.
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Would you please look at where it says regarding the same case on
4 the 12th of August, 2001.
5 A. Okay. Yes.
6 Q. The judge says that he was informed by the Ministry of Interior,
7 the sector in Skopje, the duty operations centre 92, that there are
8 grounds to suspect that there are dead bodies in the village of Ljuboten,
9 and he consulted the deputy public prosecutor, Roska Karova. Do you know
10 this lady?
11 A. Yes. We work together.
12 Q. And just like Dr. Zlatko Jackovski, the judge states here that on
13 the 12th of August, it was not possible to carry out an on-site
14 investigation; is that correct?
15 A. Yes. This is what this report shows.
16 Q. The decision on whether there are -- the required security
17 conditions for an on-site investigation is made by the judge, is it not?
18 A. Yes, in coordination with the public prosecutor.
19 Q. The police cannot influence the decision of the court, can it?
20 A. No.
21 Q. Thank you. Now, let's look at the first page of this same
22 document, 1D6.
23 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Page N000-7350 in Macedonian, and
24 in English it is probably already on the screen.
25 Q. Please look at this Official Note. In the second paragraph, the
1 investigating judge, Ognen Stavrev; as we have just seen your colleague,
2 Milan Gelevski, deputy prosecutor; and Dr. Zlatko Jackovski also attempted
3 to carry out an on-site investigation in the village of Ljuboten; and if
4 you can take a brief look, for the reason stated here, no investigation
5 was carried out on-site. Is that correct?
6 A. No. The inspection was not carried out. At that time, we were on
7 duty, when all these things were happening, and I think that you should
8 ask Milan about it. As far as I can remember now - I don't know how
9 precise this could be, because a lot of time has passed since then - Milan
10 was telling us that someone was insisting to make an on-site
11 investigation. Now, who was the one insisting, I don't know.
12 Whether that was the public prosecutor of the Republic of
13 Macedonia, whether the police was insisting, I really can't remember now.
14 A lot of time has passed since then. But that -- together with the
15 investigating judge and with the criminal pathologist, they have decided
16 not to go there because of the danger. That is true.
17 Q. Let me just put one more question about this. Do you have any
18 knowledge from that time? Did you learn from your colleagues when they
19 set out towards the village for the third time that they learned that the
20 bodies had been buried?
21 A. I can't remember.
22 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, this might be a
23 convenient moment.
24 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you very much, Ms. Residovic. Your
25 questioning has now gone for an hour and a quarter, so we expect that you
1 will be fairly quick in finishing when we resume.
2 Thank you.
3 --- Recess taken at 3.47 p.m.
4 --- On resuming at 4.18 p.m.
5 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Ms. Residovic.
6 MS. RESIDOVIC: Thank you very much, Your Honour..
7 Q. [Interpretation] Ms. Ruskovska, in connection with the decision as
8 to whether there are security conditions for an investigation, I would
9 like to ask you the following. Do you know Dragoljub Sakic?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. He's a colleague of yours from the prosecutors's office, is he
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Could you tell Your Honours whether something happened to your
15 colleague, and as a result of this, your prosecutor decided that
16 prosecutors should not go to carry out on-site investigations in places
17 where there's a security risk?
18 A. I know that they were supposed to go to an on-site inspection, and
19 they were together with an investigating judge. I can't remember who was
20 the investigating judge. Probably Sakic, if he is called here as a
21 witness, will tell you himself. They went to an on-site investigation
22 with three Hummers. So one was in the front; then Sakic, with the
23 investigating judge, in the one in the middle; and behind them, there was
24 another Hummer. And the first Hummer stepped on a land-mine placed on the
25 road, and one of the police officers sustained a light injury. The convoy
2 First, due to security reasons, they stayed inside the Hummers for
3 about half an hour, because they did not know whether it was a siege by
4 terrorists; and then after half an hour later, when they saw that there
5 was no shooting, they went out of the Hummers, and then they walked for
6 ten kilometres or more. I can't know how many kilometres exactly they
7 were walking and making their way through the woods, until they managed to
8 establish a contact with our security forces who escorted them back to
10 And I am not sure, but I think that that was the reason; and after
11 this event the public prosecutor of Skopje at that time, Djoko Nastovski,
12 decided that we would not go to on-site investigations any longer because
13 we were not guaranteed. Nobody could guarantee or safety, and it was the
14 same for the investigating judges. So ...
15 Q. Thank you very much for explaining this.
16 So there was one of the reasons why judges, under certain
17 conditions, decided not to carry out on-site investigations.
18 A. I would only like to add, if I may, we did go to on-site
19 investigations before that, regardless of the risk involved, before this.
20 My colleagues would go to the border places that were more or less
21 accessible. They would go there with helicopters, but they had
22 bullet-proof vests and helmets on their heads. And until that event,
23 until this took place with Sakic, we would go, really; but after this, it
24 was obvious that our safety could not be guaranteed. So after that event,
25 we stopped going to on-site investigations.
1 Q. And the event you have described occurred a few days before --
2 before Ljuboten?
3 A. I couldn't say precisely, really. Sakic said and remembers the
4 exact date, so you will need to ask him.
5 Q. We also spoke about criminal proceedings in which you, as deputy
6 prosecutor, participated. Is it correct that before questioning an
7 accused, the investigating judge informs him of all his legal rights, and
8 all of you who participated in criminal proceedings did your best to have
9 all these rights respected fully?
10 A. If it weren't like this, this would be a violation of the criminal
11 procedure, so the records of it would not be valid evidence for the court.
12 This would be in breach of the criminal proper, and the very fact of a
13 breach of criminal procedure considers the evidence being invalid before
14 the court.
15 Q. In the statement you gave to the Prosecutor, P235, you said that
16 you were on duty when the inspector from the SVR Skopje, Mr. Bojic,
17 informed you of the fact that criminal reports against a certain number of
18 persons would be submitted; is that correct?
19 A. Yes. Let me just clarify. I was not on duty. These were my
20 regular working hours; and since this was the time of summer holidays, we
21 were only seven of us working within that period. So all of us were
22 working then.
23 Q. If I understood your statement correctly, you succeeded in
24 convincing Mr. Bojic that not just one but several criminal reports should
25 be submitted, because one deputy public prosecutor would not be able to
1 deal with the number of people reported; is that correct?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And if I'm correct, the police accepted this suggestion, and three
4 criminal reports were filed against 27 persons; is that correct?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. And you yourself wrote one of those requests to institute an
7 investigation; is that correct?
8 A. Yes.
9 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreters ask that the microphone is
10 moved closer to the counsel.
11 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we now show, or rather, look
12 at the document under tab 6 in your binder. That's P46. The Macedonian
13 version is on page 0463-8774-035. The English version is on page ET
14 0463-8808, page 1, please.
15 This is in Macedonian, and P46 is the page in English, yes.
16 Q. I wish to ask you, in connection with this document, is this the
17 criminal report submitted in this form by the competent organ of the
18 Interior to you, as the public prosecutor?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. At the top of the page, we have information about the organ
21 submitting the report; is that correct?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. And one can see from this that the criminal charges were brought
24 by the Department of the Interior in Cair; is that correct?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Is it correct, Ms. Ruskovska, that such a criminal report is
2 accompanied by the evidence available to the police?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. And on the basis of this, you decide whether to submit a request
5 for a criminal investigation to be started, or you decide to act in other
6 ways; is that correct?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Is it correct, Ms. Ruskovska, that the Ministry of Interior of the
9 competent organ of the ministry, should they come up with additional
10 information concerning the criminal report, subsequently deliver to you
11 the additional information and evidence that was not sent along with the
12 criminal charges?
13 A. For instance, if these are cases involving detention, and I'm
14 speaking about detention with longer duration, that is customary. The
15 police could not manage everything. They must prepare the report within
16 24 hours and then submit it to the competent public prosecutor. So,
17 normally, the expert reports are delayed, and then afterwards they submit
18 to us an additional report; that is, the supplement to the criminal
19 report. And through this they inform us about the additional evidence
20 that they acquired.
21 Q. Well, look at number 8 in your binder.
22 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] That's P46, number 0463-8874-044,
23 and the English is ET 0463-8817-0463-8817.
24 Q. This is additional material sent by the police to the prosecutor
25 in connection with a previously submitted criminal report. Is this an
1 example of what you have just talked about; an expert report was
2 submitted, or something along those lines, and the police then
3 subsequently then sent this to you?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. As we have just said that in the courtroom, there is the chamber
6 and the prosecutor and the defence counsel. But is it also true that
7 order in the court, the bringing of the accused, and so on is seen to by
8 the court police?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. In the binder under number 44, could you please look at a
12 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] This is a 65 ter document, 376.
13 In Macedonian, the first page is N002-5405. In English, the first page is
15 Q. And please look at Roman 8, Judicial Police.
16 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] In Macedonian, it is N002-5424;
17 and in English, N002-5426-ET?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Which page did you say?
19 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Number 6. 44, towards the end. This is the Law on Courts.
21 A. All right.
22 Q. Article 103. The heading above that is "Court Police."
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. My first question is: The status of the court police is regulated
25 by the Law on Courts; is that correct?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. The court police, in 2001, and probably still today, falls within
3 the competence of the Ministry of Justice. Is this correct?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. The Ministry of Interior has no competences with regard to the
6 court police; is that correct?
7 A. No.
8 Q. Ms. Ruskovska, persons who are being detained are in the court
9 detention unit; is that correct?
10 A. No. Detention -- the detention is in the remand prison, not in
11 the court.
12 Q. I am not referring to the court building, but to the remand
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. And detention and remand falls within the competence of the
16 Ministry of Justice?
17 A. All courts or all prison institutions including the remand prison,
18 as well as the employees or the guards and all the employees, are
19 employees of the Ministry of Justice.
20 Q. You just have answered what my next question was going to be. The
21 guards in prison fall within the competence of the Ministry of Justice; is
22 that correct?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. The Ministry of Interior, the police, has no competences, either
25 with respect to remand prisons or to guards in prisons; is that correct?
1 A. Not only that they don't have any competence; but, for example, if
2 they would like to interview a detainee or a sentenced person in the
3 prison, they have to ask for permission from the judged or the presiding
4 judge if the case is ongoing. So they can't each enter the prison without
6 Q. My question is: They certainly have no powers over prison guards?
7 A. No, they don't.
8 Q. You may recall, in 2001, the Minister of Justice was an Albanian,
9 Ixet Memeti.
10 A. Well, I'm not sure, but I think so.
11 Q. And you know that, at that time, there were several ministers who
12 were Albanian and several deputy ministers who were Albanian?
13 A. Yes, yes.
14 Q. You did not hear or probably you do not know that any minister or
15 deputy minister who was an Albanian resigned at the time?
16 A. No.
17 Q. Thank you. As you said, that you submitted a request for the
18 undertaking of an investigation with respect to some persons.
19 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we please look at the
20 documents under tab 12 in the binder. That's P52. Macedonian page 4.
21 English page N001- -- ET N001-9900-N001-9901. And please look at
22 N001-9897-05, and English ET-N001-9900-2.
23 Q. Tell me, is this your name? Were you the signatory of this
24 request to open an investigation?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. And this is the usual kind of request submitted by a deputy
2 prosecutor to an investigating judge to have an investigation conducted
3 with respect to certain persons; is that correct?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. And as you have just said, when explaining detention on remand,
6 you said that this is also done at the request of the prosecutor. So this
7 kind of request is also included in this document; is that correct?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. The Ministry of Interior and the minister himself have no
10 authority to propose or decide on detention or remand for certain persons;
11 is that correct?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. You were present when statements were taken from a number of
14 suspects. These were the suspects for whom you submitted a request for an
15 investigation; is that correct?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. I will now show you only the first pages of some statements made
18 by suspects. I don't want us to get into a discussion of what you did
19 concerning these individual statements. I will just put some general
20 questions to you after we have seen the documents.
21 So please look first under tab 13 in your binder, Exhibit P54.
22 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Macedonian page N001-9643-045, and
23 English N001-9687-ET-001. And then under tab 14, you see Exhibit P52. In
24 Macedonian, it's page 11. In English, it's ET-001-9907-1. And then
25 please look at tab 15. That's Exhibit P52.
1 I apologise. There's a mistake here -- oh, no. It's all right.
2 It's all right. It's been corrected.
3 So in tab 15, we have P52. Macedonian page 14, and English page
4 ET-001-9910-1. And then in tab 16, that's Exhibit P52. Macedonian page
5 30; English page N001-9916-1. And then tab 17, Exhibit P52. Macedonian
6 page 17, English page ET-001-9913-1. And then under tab 18, Exhibit P52.
7 Macedonian page 23, English page ET-N001-9919-1.
8 Tab 19, Exhibit P52. Macedonian page 26, English page
9 ET-N001-9922-1. Tab 20, Exhibit P52. Macedonian page 29, English page
10 ET-N001-9925-1. And in tab 21, Exhibit P53. Macedonian page 16, English
11 page N001-9842-1.
12 Q. I tried to read slowly to give you time to look at these first
13 pages. Tell me, Ms. Ruskovska, did you notice that on those front pages
14 it says that you were present when these persons were questioned as deputy
15 public prosecutor?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. So all of these suspects were questioned in your presence; is that
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. The judge informed them about all their legal rights, and that was
21 done in your presence; is that correct?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. They were warned that they had the right to speak in Albanian
24 language and that they had the right to an attorney, but everybody stated
25 that they spoke Macedonian and that they would defend themselves in
1 Macedonian; is that correct?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. They were also informed that they had a right to counsel of their
4 own choice; and since most of them could not afford one, the court then
5 assigned them an ex officio counsel who was present in the questioning; is
6 that correct?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. They were also informed that they can refrain from answering the
9 questions, and that they could present their own defence; is that correct?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. The judge, and it was done in your presence, recorded in the
12 minutes from the trial everything that the suspects stated with regards to
13 the investigation that was conducted against them; is that correct?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. And the court record accurately shows everything that these
16 persons stated; is that correct?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Is it correct, Ms. Ruskovska, that pursuant to our law, an accused
19 could never be questioned as a witness; is that correct?
20 A. No. I mean, it is correct, they could not be interviewed.
21 Q. They are never informed that they have the duty to speak the
22 truth; is that correct?
23 A. Yes, it is so.
24 Q. As opposed to the witnesses, and if the witnesses perjure
25 themselves before the court, they could be held responsible for perjury,
1 the accused pursuant to the law of the Republic of Macedonia could never
2 be held for a false testimony given to the court; is that correct?
3 A. Yes, it is correct.
4 Q. Is it correct that in all these cases, the court record is
5 dictated by the judge out loud and the accused are asked if they have
6 something to add to it?
7 A. Not only in these records, but all the records that are made by
8 the investigating judge are dictated out loud; and then the accused, or a
9 witness, or anyone giving a statement has the right to read it before
10 signing it.
11 Q. And if by chance the investigating judge would omit something from
12 the record, then the prosecutor who is present has the right and also the
13 defence counsel have the right as well as the accused himself or herself
14 they have the right to ask that the issue omitted is recorded in the
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. So, if anyone stated in your presence that they have been, for
18 instance, ill-treated, then the judge included that in the records; is
19 that correct?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And if those -- if such facts are not indicated in the records,
22 you can say with certainty that the accused never mentioned any
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. When making a statement to the Prosecutor on the 16th of December,
1 2002 [as interpreted], you were shown the statement of the accused, Ali
2 Riza, where he indicated that he had been ill-treated and beaten while the
3 paraffin glove was performed on him. Do you remember this?
4 A. I remember it was December, but I can't remember who was exactly
5 saying that.
6 Q. I apologise. Maybe I made a mistake. In line 22, it is written
7 "2002," while it should be "2005," when you made your statement.
8 Is that correct?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. All right. In that statement, in item 11, P235, you stated that
11 the customary practice for anyone accused from that area is that they say
12 before the court that they admitted to something or they stated something
13 because they had been ill-treated or because the police beat them.
14 Tell me, is that practically the customary practice, the
15 foundation on which the accused are trying to base their defence?
16 A. It is like that even today. We have, for example, a statement at
17 a main hearing when the accused would say that the investigating judge has
18 beaten them.
19 Q. And if the evidence available to the court and to the prosecutor
20 clearly indicate that it is not correct, considering the right of the
21 accused to present any evidence that they deem appropriate, no measures
22 could be taken against the accused for perjuring themselves; is that
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Is it correct that in your statement, you note that if the
1 accused, one who would claim ill-treatment, had no visible injuries, then
2 you and the investigating judge would simply consider that they were
4 A. Yes.
5 MR. SAXON: Your Honours.
6 JUDGE PARKER: Yes.
7 MR. SAXON: I apologise for the interruption, but it seems right
8 now that my learned friend is simply asking the witness to confirm what
9 she has -- the contents of her written statement which are already in
10 evidence, and I'm not sure whether this is the best use of our court time.
11 JUDGE PARKER: You have anticipated me by about three minutes,
12 Mr. Saxon. I will 5.00 in my sights as a convenient time to interrupt and
13 point out that much of what you're now saying is already in evidence, and
14 it's not going to help anybody to just put it into evidence again.
15 The statement is there so that could I ask you, Ms. Residovic, to
16 now concentrate on any remaining matters that have not been dealt with.
17 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. I will act now with --
18 in accordance with the instructions of Your Honours.
19 Q. The main thing I wish to ask you, Ms. Ruskovska, considering the
20 facts that you have already stated in the statement given to the
21 Prosecutor, is whether the facts that were stated by the accused, in your
22 presence and in the presence of the investigating judge and of the
23 counsel, were available to the Ministry of Interior or to the police?
24 A. You mean about the statements given before the investigating
1 Q. Yes.
2 A. No. I mean, they were not available to them.
3 Q. And that is only normal, because the police did not participate in
4 an investigation.
5 Also the post-mortem report were never sent to the police, they
6 were sent to the investigating judge only. Is that correct?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. And if you were to believe what the accused were saying in your
9 presence, would it then be correct if I were to say that it would be the
10 responsibility of the public prosecutor to take certain actions, measures,
11 with regards to the reasonable grounds that were stated in your presence?
12 A. I don't know what you precisely are referring to. Could you
13 clarify, please?
14 Q. If, for instance, maybe this did not happen in your presence, but
15 let's assume that it had happened, that some of the accused had serious
16 injuries, and complained of sustaining them through the ill-treatment by
17 the police, would it then be correct that it would be your responsibility,
18 of you, the public prosecutor, to take actions to investigate whether
19 those claims were justified, those claims made by the accused?
20 A. First, it is the obligation of the investigating judge to enter in
21 the record all the visible injuries. If there are visible injuries, then
22 upon the completion of the interview, the accused is sent to a physician,
23 where an expert, a doctor, would identify the type of the injury.
24 After that, if these are more serious injuries, then it is the --
25 the obligation of the prosecutor to further investigate how these injuries
1 have been inflicted. Usually, there is a forensic expertise to identify
2 how these injuries have been inflicted, what have they been inflicted
3 with, so then the procedure, the legal procedure is the same as for any
4 other type of criminal act.
5 Q. And if the court record contained a suspicion that a police
6 officer did something illegal, then, as you have just stated, the
7 investigating judge would the duty to verify the defence presented by the
8 accused and also obtain other evidence, medical evidence or other
9 statements of witnesses; and after that, the public prosecutor would act
10 within the competences.
11 And so I'm asking again: The police could not know what has been
12 stated and what has been made part of the criminal record in the court; is
13 that correct?
14 A. In the criminal files of the court, the judge has access to them,
15 the prosecutor has access to them, the accused, and his counsel. Nobody
17 Q. Thank you. And if would just happen that in the given
18 circumstances the court failed to take all the actions that were its duty,
19 as you have stated, or the prosecutor failed to do the follow-up actions,
20 the police could have no influence over that, in no way. Is that correct?
21 A. No. That would be a failing to act by the investigating judge and
22 the prosecutor.
23 Q. Tell me, we discussed a while ago the situation where the
24 prosecutor -- actually, the investigating judge could ask the police to
25 render assistance also in the course of the actual investigation.
1 I would like to ask you now to look at the document under the tab
3 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] That is Exhibit P47. Macedonian
4 page 92, while the English page ET-0463-8982-01. That is the
5 supplementary opinion of the criminalistics, criminal techniques, as it is
6 stated in the document, of the Ministry of Interior.
7 And the next document under tab 25, that is Exhibit P47.
8 Macedonian page 90, while the English page is ET-0463-8980-01. So this
9 is, again, a supplementary opinion that is submitted upon a court request.
10 Q. In relation to these exhibits, I would like to ask you,
11 Ms. Ruskovska, is it correct that the paraffin glove, as evidence of
12 presence of nitrate particles on a body of a given person, was used often
13 in relation to crimes involving use of fire-arms.
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. In this last document, there is the signature of the engineer,
16 Sylvija Kunovska, as an expert witness. Do you know Ms. Kunovska?
17 A. No.
18 Q. At any rate, as a prosecutor acting within a case, you are making
19 your best efforts to get the best opinions from the experts available in
20 the Republic of Macedonia, in relation to a case that are you in charge
21 with; is that correct?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. And the same is done by the investigating judge in the court; is
24 that correct?
25 A. Basically, the investigating judge does it because the expertise
1 needs to be taken. The court has the budget to pay for them, so all the
2 expertise are conducted through the court or upon our request. Upon the
3 request of the prosecutor's office, these are ordered by the investigating
4 judge for any expertise, for post-mortem, for traffic expertise, for like
5 powder particles expertise, anything.
6 Everything goes through the investigating judge when the case is
7 in the investigating stage. If it is in the stage of a trial, then that
8 is requested by the president of the court chamber.
9 Q. And in this case, against some persons from Ljuboten, you had also
10 the expertise, expert report that showed the presence of nitrate
11 particles. That was one of the exhibits accompanying the indictment,
12 presence of particles in persons who were detained. Is that correct?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. The document we have in front of us shows that the judge requested
15 an additional opinion from the expert who was in charge. So could you
16 tell me, please, whether you, in your practice or in this specific case,
17 requested that the expert, apart from the description of the finding, the
18 presence of nitrate particles, gives an opinion of what would be the
19 reason of where would those particles found on the hands of the accused
20 originate from?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. In your practice, were you ever confronted with an opinion that
23 was based also on the overall circumstances that the court or the expert
24 took into consideration to then give their opinion?
25 A. Are you referring to the nitrate particles?
1 Q. Yes.
2 A. Yes. I had a recent case like that; whereby, the expert stated
3 that the nitrate particles could originate from various sources, not only
4 from gun powder. But according to their opinion, they are
5 stratification. The position of -- the position of certain parts of the
6 hands can indicate with high probability that they can originate from gun
8 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Saxon.
9 MR. SAXON: It appears to the Prosecution that through this
10 witness we are now receiving expert opinion from another witness in some
11 other case apparently in Macedonia, and it seems to me that this is of
12 little assistance to the Trial Chamber.
13 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Saxon.
14 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I just wish to show
15 to the Court what is the practice followed by all bodies, especially the
16 law enforcement bodies in the Republic of Macedonia, because they don't
17 have any other possibilities.
18 So if you allow me, I have just one more question in relation to
19 this witness [as interpreted].
20 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
21 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation]
22 Q. So, Ms. Ruskovska, tell me, please, whether what you requested in
23 the case against the -- versus the people from Ljuboten, in relation to
24 the nitrate particles expert report, was the best you could get in the
25 Republic of Macedonia?
1 A. Yes, at that time.
2 Q. So you did not have any other institution. You had no funds to
3 verify whether these expert report was absolutely accurate anywhere else
4 in the world; is that correct?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. And you relied, among other things, also on the expert reports
7 submit to the you; is that correct?
8 A. That's what there are experts for, to be able to rely on them.
9 Q. Thank you.
10 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] I apologise. Maybe it is
11 incorrectly entered in the transcript.
12 I said that in relation to this paraffin glove test, I have only
13 this these questions I have asked; while in the line 18, it is written
14 that I have just few more questions, which would be incorrect.
15 I have a number of questions still pending, but I will, anyhow,
16 complete my cross-examination soon.
17 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you very much.
18 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. Ms. Ruskovska, were you -- in the course of this procedure, did
20 you know that a person that an investigation was needed for, that that
21 person had died in the meantime?
22 A. I think, yes.
23 Q. If I were to say that at that time case, your colleague,
24 Serafimovski acted, could you recall that that was his case?
25 A. I couldn't. There were too many people there, so I don't know
1 which person was part of which case.
2 Q. Since you can't recall who of your colleagues exactly had the
3 named case, I would only ask you: You surely know your colleague, Jovan
4 Serafimovski, don't you?
5 A. Yes, yes. We used to work together.
6 Q. I will show you a part of the statement that your colleague, Jovan
7 Serafimovski, gave on 19th of December, 2005 to the ICTY investigators,
8 and I would like to ask you a few questions in relation to that.
9 In point 10 of that statement of the 19th of December 2007, Jovan
10 Serafimovski has stated: "In respect to the Atulla Qaili case mentioned in
11 part 7 of the request, on 14th of August, 2001, I didn't know that he is
12 already dead. About the death of Atulla Qaili, I learned when I received
13 the written information from the investigating judge, Velce Pancevski.
14 "My duty was to identify the cause of death of Atulla Qaili. We
15 heard that he has been hurt during the conflict with the Macedonian
16 security forces in the village of Ljuboten. I learned from the press that
17 the police was there. I do not know what unit was there. I did not know
18 the unit, nor the names of the police or the army officials that were
19 involved in the death of Atulla Qaili. I did not try to investigate who
20 was related to the death of Atulla Qaili."
21 In respect to this, and since you have said earlier that some
22 significant injuries should be further investigated by the investigating
23 judge, that is, the competent prosecutor, do you think that your
24 colleague, Jovan Serafimovski, rightly said that it was his duty at that
25 moment to investigate information he received from the investigating
2 A. In my opinion, first, in agreement with the investigating judge,
3 the post-mortem protocol was ordered. After such post-mortem protocol was
4 prepared, and depending on the injuries causing the death and the
5 indications that this presents, then we were supposed to investigate it;
6 we, the prosecutor's office.
7 Q. And then the post-mortem protocol is only sent to the
8 investigating judge; is that correct?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. The police does not receive such a post-mortem report.
11 A. No.
12 Q. In your statement, you also spoke about the very difficult
13 conditions under which you used to work; you and the court. Tell me,
14 please, did any of the suspects, that you -- to which interviews you
15 participated, mention any person against which it would be possible to
16 initiate then a procedure?
17 A. No.
18 Q. Do you agree with me when I say that in some conflicts where large
19 numbers of persons are involved, it is very difficult, both for the police
20 and for the prosecutor and for the court, to establish a particular
21 perpetrator, unless the persons participating in the conflict name the
23 A. Well, always when they're involved, more persons is difficult to
24 identify who -- who has done what precisely.
25 Q. You said that in your statement, but I'll ask you again: Is it
1 correct that you, your colleagues, the judges, all did your very best in
2 compliance with the law, regardless of the complicated conditions that
3 obtained at the time for the work of the judges and the prosecutors.
4 A. We really tried to do our best, most professionally. So if we
5 have made a mistake, that wasn't on purpose; but in all this pressure, in
6 all that pressure ...
7 Q. Thank you. As we have already said that when there is unknown
8 perpetrator, only certain investigative actions can be undertaken, but not
9 an investigation, not a full-blown investigation. And we have already
10 seen official records and notes written by judges and prosecutors, showing
11 that they were unable to enter the village of Ljuboten to establish facts
12 concerning the death of those persons.
13 The only thing that possibly be done was to exhume the bodies that
14 had been buried?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. And this could only be ordered by the investigating judge at the
17 proposal of the prosecutor; is that correct?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. The police, or the Ministry of Interior, was unable to carry out
20 this investigative activity or to establish whether those persons had been
21 killed and why.
22 A. The Law on Criminal Procedure itself stipulates that upon the
23 proposal of the public prosecutor, the investigating judge orders
24 exhumation. So in accordance to the law, the obligation of any other body
25 is not prescribed to carry out that.
1 Q. Would you please look at the document in tab 35.
2 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] It's Exhibit P55. Macedonian page
3 3; English page P002-1148-1. This is the proposal submitted by the basic
4 public prosecutor's office on the 10th of September, 2001 for the
5 undertaking of certain investigation actions.
6 Q. And in paragraph 2 of this proposal, it says that, "The public
7 prosecutor's office, in relation to this case, acting pursuant to Article
8 148, paragraph 1 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, and upon the written
9 initiative of the Minister of the Interior, which has been handed to the
10 above-named during duty hours, during outside the regular working hours,
11 on the 7th of September, 2001, gives a proposal on undertaking certain
12 investigation actions."
13 Is it correct that this is a lawful proposal submitted by the
14 competent prosecutor following an initiative from the Ministry of
16 A. Yes. This is what it looks like from the proposal.
17 Q. Could you please now look at document -- the document in tab 36,
18 that is.
19 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] 1D177. Macedonian page 1D-1941.
20 And we can look at all three pages, 1942, and 1943. English page 1D-1944,
21 1D-1945, and 1D-1946.
22 Your Honours, I wish only to mention that this document is Exhibit
23 D49 --
24 INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: P49.
25 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] But as there was no translation,
1 we added the translation so that Your Honours might have the complete
2 document in English.
3 Q. Could you please look at tab 37 now.
4 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] It's Exhibit P55. Macedonian
5 page 4; English page ET-N002-1149-1.
6 Q. Please take a look at the document you have in your binder. The
7 document emanates from the Ministry of Interior, the public security
8 directorate. The document is dated the 7th of August, 2001.
9 But in the previous document, you saw that the Ministry of
10 Interior provided information about a mistake in the date and submitted
11 the first page with a correct date, which was the 7th of September, 2001.
12 As we have just seen that it was your colleague, Mr. Sakic, who
13 dealt with this case, is this the proposal sent by the ministry to the
14 public prosecutor and the investigating judge to be sure it is a proposal,
15 but your colleague properly treated it as an initiative to continue with
16 investigative actions in order to determine what exactly happened in
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Thank you. Would you agree with me, Ms. Ruskovska, that
20 practically this kind of initiative, coming from the Ministry of Interior,
21 shows that the ministry did more than it was duty-bound under the law to
22 do, because it is encouraged the proper organs to continue with their
23 investigation into the events at Ljuboten. Would you agree with this?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Thank you. Would you please look at tab 38 now.
1 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] It is our 65 ter exhibit, 1D-178.
2 Macedonian page 1D-1947; English 1D-1948.
3 Your Honours, this document, again, is part of P49, but there is
4 no translation, so we have a draft translation for the purposes of today's
5 testimony, and we shall submit the official translation when we receive
7 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
8 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. Ms. Ruskovska, this Official Note was signed by investigating
10 judge, Dragan Nikoloveski. You now Judge Nikoloveski, do you not?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. If you look at this document, you can see that the investigating
13 judge immediately agreed to the proposal submitted on the 10th of
14 September by the public prosecutor's office, and a meeting was held in the
15 Institute for Forensic Medicine, attended, apart from the judge and the
16 prosecutor, by representatives of the Ministry of Interior, from the
17 security sector in Skopje; and at this meeting, further measures were
18 discussed in order to continue the investigation into the events at
20 Does this show, Ms. Ruskovska, that the investigation into the
21 events at Ljuboten did not stop, but that both the Ministry of Interior
22 and the prosecutor and the judge opened up further investigations against
23 unknown perpetrators?
24 A. Well, it surely has been open, because you can see the number of
25 the file at the top, as far as I was able to notice. The file number
2 Q. Thank you. Please now look at tab 39.
3 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] This is our 65 ter 1D-179.
4 Macedonian page 1D-1949 and the English 1D-50.
5 Your Honours, this is also part of P49. There was no translation,
6 so we have provided the draft translation.
7 Q. Ms. Ruskovska, you see, again, before you a letter concerning
8 investigation in the Ljuboten event, and it is a request by the
9 investigating judge to the director of the public safety bureau, Goran
10 Mitevski, asking that the police obtain the additional information needed,
11 so that the judge can enter the village and carry out the exhumation and
12 post-mortems as proposed.
13 Does this also show, Ms. Ruskovska, that the various organs
14 attempted to carry out a thorough investigation into the events in
16 A. Yes. This bears the same number that the case was initiated
17 indicated with, about the exhumation, about the special investigating
19 Q. Ms. Ruskovska, are you aware that, in 2001, the Albanian
20 population did not wish to cooperate with the state organs of the Republic
21 of Macedonia?
22 A. I know that part of the Albanian population in the crisis areas
23 was not willing to cooperate. I can only speak about that part of the
24 Albanian population.
25 Q. Do the prosecutor's office ant the court still meet with
1 obstruction by Albanian groups in the crisis-affected areas?
2 A. Well, yes.
3 Q. Were you aware that Albanians, including Albanians from the
4 village of Ljuboten, did not want to report deaths, and this caused great
5 problems when death certificates had to be issued?
6 A. I can't remember now. If you're talking about that period in
7 2001, I can't really recall.
8 Q. Very well. Thank you. Would you please look at document in tab
10 JUDGE PARKER: Ms. Residovic we've now gone over time for this
11 session. We have given you very free hand, but tried to encourage you to
12 be mindful of time. It's now been a very long time that have you been
13 questioning. Can you indicate where you are with your time?
14 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. I have about
15 ten minutes of questions left.
16 JUDGE PARKER: We will adjourn now and resume at five minutes past
18 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
19 --- Recess taken at 5.37 p.m.
20 --- On resuming at 6.08 p.m.
21 JUDGE PARKER: Ms. Residovic.
22 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
23 Q. Ms. Ruskovska, please take a look at tab 40 in your binder.
24 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] It's P104. It's one page; one in
25 English and one in Macedonian.
1 Q. As you see from the title, this is a document by the Cair
2 Department for Internal Affairs. Look at the Official Note, please.
3 You said just a while ago that it was very difficult in the
4 crisis-affected areas to talk to members of the Albanian population. In
5 this Official Note, it's evident that the official organ of the Ministry
6 of Internal Affairs tried to talk about Kenan Salievski, the president of
7 the Crisis Staff, and it says: "On the 16th of November, 2001, Kenan
8 Salievski called at the Department for Internal Affairs in Cair; and he
9 said that after having consulted the village board from the village of
10 Ljuboten, he couldn't give us any information either about the event or
11 about the deceased persons."
12 Does this document confirm what you know from the time about the
13 unwillingness of the Albanian population in certain areas to cooperate
14 with official state organs of the Republic of Macedonia?
15 A. Yes.
16 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] There was a problem in the
17 transcript, but I see it's been corrected.
18 Q. Did these problems also cause the failure to detect the
19 perpetrators of other crimes and bring them before the court?
20 A. What other crimes are you referring to?
21 Q. Do you have any such experiences; for example, the persons who
22 placed explosives in Ljubotenski Bacila?
23 A. The perpetrators were not discovered and no procedure was
25 Q. After completing the investigation, you and your colleagues felt
1 there was sufficient grounds to raise an indictment, did you not?
2 A. When it's investigation was completed, the case was presented
3 before the collegium of the senior public prosecutor's office in Skopje.
4 Q. Your indictments were confirmed by the court, were they not?
5 A. The senior public prosecutor's office made the decision, stating
6 that sufficient evidence was present to then raise an indictment.
7 So this was not a decision by me and the two other colleagues
8 processing the case only. This was a decision behind which the entire
9 senior public prosecutor's office in Skopje stood; and after the
10 indictment was filed, then the verdict became also final.
11 Q. But no trial was ever held, so the evidence collected during the
12 investigation could not be tested in court; is that correct?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. No trial was held because of the efforts to carry out the
15 framework agreement or the persons were granted amnesty [as interpreted];
16 is that correct?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. At the same time, in late 2001, the Law on Amnesty was being
19 prepared; is that correct?
20 A. Yes.
21 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] On page 62, line 10, it says "the
22 persons were granted amnesty." I said "that by a decree of the president
23 of the country, the persons were granted amnesty." Pardoned.
24 All right. Thank you.
25 Q. You stated that preparations were in progress and finally the Law
1 on Amnesty was adopted; is that correct?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. I will ask you to look now under tab 42 in your binder.
4 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] That is the Exhibit P83.
5 Macedonian page is N000-9977, and the English page is N000-9207.
6 Q. You recognise here the wording of the Law on Amnesty, is that
7 correct, under tab 42 -- behind tab 42?
8 A. No, because you said five laws. You said five laws. That's why I
9 got confused. We only have one law.
10 Q. Yes, yes. Maybe I made a mistake. The Law on Amnesty was
11 adopted. And on this page, you recognise the decree pronouncing the Law
12 on Amnesty and the Article 1 of that law. Is that correct?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. In paragraph 2, it is stated the amnesty also applies to
15 persons" -- I apologise.
16 In paragraph 1, it is set forth who are the persons benefiting
17 from amnesty; and at the end of this paragraph, it is stated that those
18 are the persons on whom there is a reasonable doubt that they had prepared
19 or committed crimes related to the conflict in 2001, ending with the 26th
20 of September, 2002.
21 So my question is: Is it correct, Ms. Ruskovska, that this law
22 applied to all persons who had allegedly committed crimes related to the
23 conflict up until the 26th of September?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. So it also applies to both Albanians and Macedonians and members
1 of other communities without any discrimination; is that correct?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Yes. And now a question. I'm not sure whether you will be able
4 to answer it, but I will still ask it.
5 If by any chance you had information that some person, member of
6 the police or the army forces, ill-treated a Ljuboten villager, would you
7 consider that these persons are included in the amnesty provided by this
9 A. As a prosecutor, I usually dwell on theoretical questions, and it
10 is very give difficult to provide an answer to this. It is dependent on
11 the case. But most probably, I can't speak with certainty, but most
12 probably, yes.
13 Q. And this would mainly be because, at you explained earlier, you
14 treated these events under the domestic law, as general crimes, severe
15 breaches, or less severe breaches under the domestic law, and you did not
16 think that the conduct of the police or the army would be the subject of
17 the international humanitarian law?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And, finally, in relation to the law. This law excluded
20 responsibility only for the offences that were the -- on which the
21 International Criminal Tribunal has started procedures. In 2001 and in
22 2002, you had no information that there was a procedure before the
23 International Criminal Tribunal against any person from Macedonia, member
24 of the police or the army; is that correct?
25 A. I personally had no information.
1 Q. And at the end, just two or three more questions.
2 You answered many of my questions related to the actions and the
3 competences of your colleagues, prosecutors, as well as the judges.
4 Can I say that all these persons, both prosecutors and judges,
5 were professionals with significant experience in the criminal procedures
6 in the Republic of Macedonia?
7 A. What persons are you referring to, please?
8 Q. We've mentioned your colleagues: Sakic, Serafimovski, Judge Ognen
9 Stavrev, Judge Niklovski, et cetera?
10 A. Well, yes, that is all relative. Some of them had more
11 experience; some of them had less experience. So, for example, Sakic has
12 been a prosecutor for 20 years before that. We were for five years, but
13 all of us had experience.
14 Q. And all of you made the best of efforts to work in accordance with
15 the law and to respect all the rights of the accused in the procedure; is
16 that correct?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And you did not make any difference, any discrimination whether
19 the accused were Macedonians or Albanians.
20 A. I can say that we have not done that in the past and we're not
21 doing it now. That is unacceptable.
22 Q. And, finally, Ms. Ruskovska, if anyone would claim the opposite
23 before this Court, that all of you -- all of your colleagues and you
24 yourself acted differently from what you stated now, this statement would
25 simply be incorrect. It would not be the truth. Is that correct?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Thank you very much.
3 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I have completed the
4 cross-examination of this witness.
5 I would like to ask the Court to receive into evidence the
6 exhibits shown to this witness, 1D-180. That is under tab 1 in this
7 binder. These are the excerpts from the Law on Criminal Procedure.
8 Then 1D-181, which is under the tab 2 in the Court binder -- no,
9 the first one -- I apologise.
10 The first one is the Law on Public prosecutor's office. I
12 Under tab 2 are the excerpts from the Law on Criminal Procedure,
13 and our number is 1D-181.
14 Then the document under tab 36 in your binder, which is 1D-177 as
15 its number.
16 Then tab 38, the document, our number 1D-178.
17 And tab 39, our number 1D-179.
18 MR. SAXON: Your Honour.
19 JUDGE PARKER: Do you wish to tender the documents at those five
20 tabs; is that correct?
21 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honours.
22 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Saxon.
23 MR. SAXON: Your Honour, I understand from my discussions with my
24 learned colleagues that there has been a problem with accessing certain
25 English translations on e-court. However, it seems to me that the Code of
1 Criminal Procedure has already been admitted as an exhibit, as has the Law
2 of the Public Prosecutor, and perhaps even some more of the exhibits that
3 Ms. Residovic recently referred to.
4 And I'm concerned that by admitting now excerpts of the same
5 exhibits that have already been admitted that we're simply going to
6 confuse the record.
7 That is my concern.
8 JUDGE PARKER: I believe you're correct about those two laws. And
9 is it right that the other three, tabs 36, 38, and 39, are each in the
10 situation that in one language they're already an exhibit, but there is
11 not a translation of an exhibit?
12 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, regarding each of
13 the documents, I indicated why is it we are tendering it as our evidence.
14 First, the document on public prosecutor's office that the
15 Prosecutor has in the e-court and which has been received as Prosecutor's
16 Exhibit is not the document that we are offering; namely, the document
17 that we are offering is the Law on Public Prosecutor's Office that was in
18 use in 2002 -- 2001, while the exhibit that the Prosecutor tendered is the
19 Law on Public Prosecutor's Office of a later date.
20 With regards to the other exhibits that we indicated, there are
21 numerous documents under one number. Those that we sought to tender, 36,
22 38, and 39, as you have stated already, they are part of P49, but they
23 were not translated and we could not use them in the procedure.
24 And number 2, it is true that we have the translation of the
25 entire Law on Criminal Procedure, but it is not in the e-court and we
1 think that only the relevant provisions which are important from the
2 viewpoint of Defence, it is those that we seek to tender.
3 36, 38, and 39 are not translated at all, and we don't know how
4 could we tender them without translation so that they could be shown to
5 the witness during the cross-examination.
6 We will follow your instructions, but this appeared to us as an
7 attempt to clarify our situation and not to complicate it any further.
8 [Trial Chamber confers]
9 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
10 JUDGE PARKER: The document at tab 1 will be received. It is the
11 law in force in 2001.
12 THE REGISTRAR: It will become Exhibit 1D11, Your Honours.
13 JUDGE PARKER: As far as we understand, the other four documents
14 are affected by the translation problem and the availability. I am
15 informed by the court registry officer that if the translation is
16 provided, that translation can be incorporated into the existing exhibit
17 and then we will have what you want.
18 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Since we didn't find these
19 translations, we made translations that were given to you. I don't know
20 whether the Prosecutor would ask translations for their exhibits, because
21 so far they haven't been given to us. We have indicated even before that
22 around half of the exhibits in the large files have not been translated,
23 so we could ask that the Prosecutor ask the translation for these
24 documents so then they are incorporated in the existing exhibits of the
1 MR. SAXON: Play I try to clarify the matter for the Chamber.
2 JUDGE PARKER: Indeed, Mr. Saxon.
3 MR. SAXON: I will try and clarify things and not confuse them
5 With respect, at least, to the Macedonian Law on Criminal
6 Procedure, an English, a full English translation has been available for
7 many months, if not years, and it is only because apparently of a
8 technical mistake that this English translation has not yet been uploaded
9 on to e-court. Simply, it was apparently placed in the right computer
10 folder where the e-court technicians were supposed to have done it.
11 Apparently, a mistake occurred and it is not available at this
12 moment on e-court, but the Prosecution believes it can be a mistake that
13 can be rectified very quickly.
14 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] We absolutely accept this proposal
15 of my colleague. In respect to document number 2, we have no -- no
16 problem putting in the e-court because it will probably be used on other
17 occasion as well. But for the documents under the numbers 36, 38, 39, the
18 Prosecutor never requested to be translated and these translation do not
19 even exist. So ...
20 MR. SAXON: That is correct and I was going to address that, but I
21 hadn't finished what I was going to say.
22 Your Honours, tomorrow afternoon there will be a discussion in the
23 interests of harmony between Defence counsel and members of the
24 Prosecution team, in part about this very issue. There were documents
25 within these voluminous court files which the Prosecution did not request
1 to be translated into English.
2 I don't believe it is half of them, but there were a number of
3 documents which the Prosecution did not request to be translated into
4 English because, quite frankly, the Prosecution when it reviewed all the
5 document did not believe at that time that they would be relevant and so
6 did not require translation.
7 But we will review the entire list of these documents with members
8 of the Defence tomorrow, and I believe we will be able to find a
9 resolution for this. We can certainly request additional translations.
10 JUDGE PARKER: Can I suggest, Ms. Residovic, that documents at
11 tabs 36, 38, and 39 simply be left aside for the moment to see whether
12 there can be a resolution of the translation problem. If that can't be
13 resolved, we will revive your motion and deal with it the way you propose.
14 But if they can be incorporated into an existing exhibit, the
15 translations, it would, I think, in the long run be more convenient for
16 everybody. So ...
17 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.
18 JUDGE PARKER: Now, I take it, Mr. Apostolski remains, as he
19 indicated, not wishing to cross-examine.
20 So, Mr. Saxon
21 Re-examination by Mr. Saxon:
22 Q. Ms. Ruskovska, what does the term "effective control" mean to you?
23 A. I don't understand your question.
24 Q. Well, my colleague asked you a question. It's at page 20 of
25 today's transcript, and she asked you whether members -- whether the
1 Minister of the Interior, in 2001, had effective control over members of
2 the Ministry of Interior who were conducting investigations.
3 So what does this concept of "effective control" mean to you?
4 A. The police is not carrying out investigation at all. The police
5 participates in the pretrial procedure, so the investigation is carried
6 out by the investigating judge and the request of the prosecutor.
7 I don't know what you're asking me.
8 Q. Well, when my colleague asked you whether the Minister of the
9 Interior lacked effective control over persons in the Ministry of Interior
10 who were investigating crimes, your response was positive. I don't recall
11 your compacts words, but it was an affirmative response.
12 I just need to explore with you what your understanding of this
13 concept of effective control is.
14 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Saxon, the transcript suggests the language
15 used may have been whether there was any "effective role" --
16 MR. SAXON: Really.
17 JUDGE PARKER: -- rather than "control."
18 MR. SAXON: I apologise then. Perhaps there has been a change.
19 JUDGE PARKER: There's a question in which both the words
20 "effective role" and "effective control" are used.
21 So carry on.
22 MR. SAXON:
23 Q. If you can, are you able to describe the meaning of this concept
24 called "effective control"?
25 A. Could you please remind me of the entire conversation? I can't
1 really remember what you're referring to. I would like to give a precise
2 and accurate answer, but if you could about back to the transcript and
3 please read to me what was said and make it clear.
4 Q. What you said was something close to this: "Isn't it true that in
5 2001, the Minister of the Interior lacked effective control," i.e., he did
6 not have effective control over persons in the Ministry of Interior who
7 investigated crimes, and you responded in the affirmative?
8 A. Yes, because basically the police stations on the level of the
9 city of Skopje are carrying out investigations on any crimes that is
10 committed, and they file the criminal reports. I do not believe that not
11 this but at any other police minister has the control that is could know
12 exactly what is going on and what criminal reports are filed.
13 Q. So does that mean, in your mind, this concept "effective control"
14 refers to whether, for example, a minister or another person in charge
15 would know exactly what was going on below him?
16 A. Look. Probably the minister receives daily reports, or reports
17 about the previous day, about the bigger things that has happened. And it
18 is known who carries out the pre-trial procedure in the detection of the
19 perpetrators and who prosecutes them. So listen, I don't know exactly. I
20 don't know precisely. This is just an assumption that he is informed
21 about the larger things that had happened in the country, and that the
22 entire work is conducted by the competent authorities.
23 Q. I'm going to move on to another point now. You explained to
24 Ms. Residovic how, in 2001, the police performed their legal duty by
25 informing an investigating judge and the public prosecutor when a crime
1 may have occurred. And I wanted to ask you, well, what happened in 2001
2 if the police committed a crime? What happened then?
3 A. Are you referring to a general criminal act or a criminal act
4 conflicted to the conflict, because the police officers are also human.
5 They can steal something sometimes. Is that so?
6 Q. I know. I know. Let's speak in general terms. What would have
7 happened in 2001 with respect to this legal duty to inform an
8 investigating judge, to inform the public prosecutor. Well, suppose a
9 police officer commits a crime. If that police officer's fellow
10 colleagues --
11 A. Then he would be reported as any other citizens.
12 Q. Okay. Suppose that --
13 A. Basically, he would supposed to be reported.
14 Q. Suppose that this hypothetical delinquent police officer committed
15 a crime but his fellow officers did not report this event. Would it be
16 fair then to say that these police officer colleagues weren't fulfilling
17 their legal duty to inform the investigating judge or the public
18 prosecutor? Would that be fair?
19 A. Yes. By not informing the investigating judge, if a police
20 officer commits a crime, a criminal report is filed and is sent to the
21 public prosecutor. And I'm sure that if there is a check-up made in the
22 public prosecutor's office in 2001, that there are certainly indicted
23 police officers for crimes that have been committed.
24 Q. Okay.
25 A. As it happens always.
1 Q. Sure. My colleague read to you some portions of a statement that
2 was provided by one of your colleagues, Mr. Serafimovski, to the Office of
3 the Prosecutor, and one of the paragraphs that my colleague read to you
4 said the following. Mr. Serafimovski heard that Atulla Qaili was hurt
5 during the conflict with security forces in Ljuboten village, and then
6 Mr. Serafimovski continued: "I learned from the press that the police
7 were there," i.e., in the village of Ljuboten.
8 Can you tell us what you learned during your investigation about
9 the presence of police units or police officers in Ljuboten on the 12th of
11 A. I don't know anything about it.
12 Q. Okay. One last question, which I hope I can formulate simply.
13 You've been shown a number of documents about proposals from
14 Minister of the Interior and prosecutors about conducting -- possibly
15 conducting an exhumation in the village of Ljuboten subsequent to the
16 events of the 12th of August.
17 And you also described how it was difficult to identify the
18 perpetrators unless persons participating in the conflict named them. It
19 was tough to identify who precisely had done what?
20 And you also explained, I know very sincerely, that you and your
21 colleagues tried to do your best but that there was a large amount of
22 pressure on you at the time.
23 I'd like to ask your opinion. At that time, August, September
24 2001, what would have been an easier method to establish the facts the
25 about what happened in Ljuboten: Would it have been easier to plan and
1 perform a exhumation in the village still in this conflicted area, or
2 would it have been easier to speak to police officers who had been present
3 in Ljuboten?
4 A. Look. Where an investigation is carried out, as a prosecutor, you
5 know it best, that the statements of the police officials are
6 insufficient, so exhumation is necessary in order to see whether the
7 statements are correct or not.
8 So if one wants to have an impartial investigation, then both
9 sides need to be interviewed and heard and to see the evidence. So the
10 expert would be able to gather with us to attempt and to acquire a
11 realistic picture about what has happened.
12 MR. SAXON: Your Honours, I have no further questions. Thank you.
13 Questioned by the Court:
14 JUDGE PARKER: Ms. Ruskovska, in respect of the matter that has
15 just been discussed with you by Mr. Saxon, if you have that bundle of
16 papers, the folder of papers with you - it's just coming back to you now -
17 if you'd turn to tab 28. It's quite a big bundle, isn't it?
18 A. Yes, it is. I found it.
19 JUDGE PARKER: You indicated to Mr. Saxon that you knew nothing at
20 the time about the conduct of the police at Ljuboten, particularly on the
21 10th to the 12th of August, I think, was the question. I wondered whether
22 you would have been aware of this report that appeared to have been
23 forwarded from Cair to the Basic Court at Skopje on the 3rd of September.
24 The covering letter is that at tab 28, and the report itself is at tab 29.
25 As I've understood your evidence, you had access to the material
1 that was available to the investigating judge. Perhaps when you've
2 familiarised yourself with these documents, you may be able to tell us
3 whether you will access to this report at that time.
4 A. Since quite some time has passed, whether I have read this
5 information or not, whether it was in my case or not, I can't really tell.
6 But I think that this information and the point of my answer to the -- to
7 Mr. Prosecutor was that even if he would have heard the police officers,
8 and this is a police report, you can't really get the realistic picture
9 about the events there. We then would only be able to see one side of the
11 As a prosecutor, I can't be sure what has exactly happened if only
12 one side is heard. And at that time, we were unable to enter Ljuboten -
13 when I say "we," I refer to my colleagues, prosecutors, and investigating
14 judges - in order to have a full on-site inspection, to get the full
15 picture. I don't say that this information is incorrect. But whether it
16 presents the realistic picture, I don't know, without conducting all the
17 other matters.
18 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you. And if I could also ask you about tab
19 9. Were you aware at the time of the report of the 14th of August, which
20 is at tab 9, from the sector for criminal techniques of the criminal
21 police on the scientific testing for gun powder residue in respect of the
22 persons that are named in that report, many of whom have been witnesses
23 before us?
24 A. So what's your question?
25 JUDGE PARKER: Were you aware of this at the time? I know it's
1 hard to remember back five years or so.
2 A. Well, most probably. Probably, yes.
3 JUDGE PARKER: This report appears to be on the court file. I
4 take it, it would, in the ordinary course, have been placed before the
5 investigating judges on each of the relevant investigations.
6 A. I believe it was part of the court case --
7 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you very much for that.
8 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: Court case file.
9 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
10 The Chamber, Mr. Saxon, has mentioned there three of the tabs
11 which we hope will be the subject of your -- included in your discussions
12 with other counsel about the translation process and the incorporation
13 into the existing exhibit, because at the moment, well, I don't believe
14 any one of those three is available other than here in an English
16 MR. SAXON: We will certainly do that, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
18 Ms. Ruskovska, you'll be pleased to know that that concludes your
19 questioning in this case. It must be a novel experience to become a
20 witness. I hope you will be able to look back on in the future with
21 some --
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes.
23 JUDGE PARKER: The Chamber would like to thank you for having come
24 to The Hague and for the assistance that you have been able to give, and,
25 of course, you may now leave and return to your home and work.
1 Thank you, indeed.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, too.
3 [The witness withdrew]
4 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Saxon.
5 MR. SAXON: Your Honour, will the Chamber permit the Prosecution
6 to use the remaining time by starting with its next witness or would the
7 Chamber prefer that we defer this until tomorrow.
8 JUDGE PARKER: The Chamber understands there are two or three
9 procedural matters to be raised before the next witness commences. If we
10 can conclude any of those in the six minutes, we will; otherwise, we will
11 deal with them first thing tomorrow morning before the next witness is
12 called. We've now got only five minutes. I think I see Mr. Mettraux
13 itching to get to his feet.
14 MR. METTRAUX: Absolutely. Good afternoon, Your Honour. Good
16 I think within the next five minutes, I will be able to deal with
17 one of those issues, and that relates to the proposed consolidated
18 statement of Mr. Henry Bolton, who is the next witness to appear.
19 Your Honour will remember your order of the 25th, I believe, of
20 April pursuant to Rule 92 ter concerning Mr. Bolton, and Your Honour's
21 order was for the Prosecution to consolidate both of Mr. Bolton's
22 statement, but not to include Mr. Bolton's investigator notes which he had
23 begin to one of the Prosecution's investigator.
24 We have identified a particular paragraph in the statement, the
25 consolidate the statement of Mr. Bolton which would appear to come from
1 his investigator's note and not from his statement. If I may direct Your
2 Honour to paragraph 8 of that consolidate the statement.
3 The problem is not so limited to the fact that a particular
4 assertion was taken or lifted from the notes into the consolidated
5 statement of Mr. Bolton. The main issue we have with this particular
6 passage is it has been placed in the wrong place of Mr. Bolton's
7 statement. If Your Honour has the benefit of the investigator's note, you
8 will become aware that the content of this paragraph 8, in fact, relates
9 to the 10th of August, 2001; whereas, in the consolidated statement, this
10 particular assertion has been placed in the context of Mr. Bolton's visit
11 or attempted visit on the 12th, which could be relatively misleading.
12 We have no doubt it is an accident in the process of consolidating
13 the statement; but we are just indicated that before Mr. Bolton come to
14 give there evidence, it would seem possible perhaps that this paragraph be
15 taken out as a whole or edited out so that this statement can be otherwise
17 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Saxon, are you in a position to comment on that
18 at the moment.
19 MR. SAXON: If you will allow me, because I know time is limited,
20 to go out on a limb, on a legal limb.
21 JUDGE PARKER: We will get our sores ready.
22 MR. SAXON: I know. It is my best recollection that this
23 particular information that is in paragraph 8 actually does refer to the
24 Sunday, 12 of August, and it is my best recollection that while similar
25 information may have been available in an investigator note, it's my best
1 recollection that this information was also reflected in one of
2 Mr. Bolton's actual signed statements. I will certainly go back and check
4 JUDGE PARKER: Could we suggest, Mr. Saxon, that you look at the
5 matter overnight, discuss it with Mr. Mettraux. If you find that it is
6 properly in its present place, and if not, well, then, we may have to
7 delete it from this written statement. Whether it would become the
8 subject of oral question or not would be a matter consequential on that.
9 I think we will leave it on that basis, that has used four of the
10 five minutes. I think we will call it finished for the day there.
11 Counsel may not have caught up with the fact that that tomorrow we
12 have been moved from the afternoon to the morning, and we start at 9.00 in
13 the morning in courtroom number II.
14 We now adjourn for the evening.
15 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 7.00 p.m.,
16 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 7th day of June,
17 2007, at 9.00 a.m.