1 Friday, 4 February 2005
2 [Status Conference]
3 [Open session]
4 --- Upon commencing at 2.33 p.m.
5 JUDGE PARKER: Good afternoon.
6 Ms. Sartorio, you're appearing for the Prosecution?
7 MS. SARTORIO: I am, Your Honour.
8 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you. Mr. Prodanovic?
9 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
10 MR. PRODANOVIC: [No interpretation].
11 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
12 Mr. Separovic.
13 MR. SEPAROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I represent
14 General Markac.
15 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you very. We're dealing today with a Status
16 Conference in the case of the Prosecutor against Ivan Cermak and Mladen
17 Markac. The accused have indicated that they do not wish to be present
18 for those proceedings today, so we proceed in their absence.
19 This is the third Status Conference, the last being on the 12th of
20 October. And I understand that in preparation for this, there was a 65
21 ter Conference yesterday with the parties and the senior legal officer of
22 the Trial Chamber.
23 The first matter to ask is whether there are any issues concerning
24 the health of either accused which could be relevant to the ongoing
25 preparation of the case.
1 MR. PRODANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, General Cermak has
2 no health problems. During his stay in detention, he actually recovered
3 fully. That may sound a bit contradictory, but that's actually the way it
5 JUDGE PARKER: No, I think that sometimes happens. A quiet rest,
7 Mr. Separovic, any problems?
8 MR. SEPAROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, no special problems.
9 Blood sugar is a constant problem, but the fact that he was released
10 contributed to an improvement in his condition, so there's nothing special
11 I have to add. He goes for regular checkups, and his health condition is
12 the way it was before, except that his blood sugar is down a bit.
13 JUDGE PARKER: I'm glad to hear that from each of the counsel.
14 Perhaps it's the counsel we'll have to care for rather than the accused in
15 getting this case ready for trial.
16 Matters pending, the only matter of which I'm aware is the
17 decision in the final stages of preparation on the indictment and which
18 will be delivered shortly.
19 Matters of disclosure. I understand that the Rule 66(A)(i) is now
20 complete. Is that right, Ms. Sartorio?
21 MS. SARTORIO: That's correct, Your Honour.
22 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you. The Rule 66(A)(ii), where is that?
23 MS. SARTORIO: Excuse me, Your Honour.
24 JUDGE PARKER: You were going at the last conference to disclose
25 by November some 4 to 500 additional documents, and some 10 additional
1 international witness statements, I think.
2 MS. SARTORIO: Yes, Your Honour. That's been done. Since the
3 last Status Conference on the 12th of October, we have made three sets of
4 disclosure, and all of the witness statements have been disclosed to date,
5 and -- as well as most of the 66(A) documents. However, as you know,
6 disclosure is ongoing, and there will be additional witnesses and
7 documents that will come up. But as of this date, we've complied with
8 Rule 66(A).
9 JUDGE PARKER: Very well.
10 Now, is there any other aspect of disclosure that is still ongoing
11 at the moment?
12 MS. SARTORIO: Well, yes, Your Honour. It's always ongoing, the
13 review. And as we go along, we intend to make disclosure on a rolling
14 basis. And in addition, we have disclosed all Rule 66 -- 68(I) materials
15 for which we have actual knowledge and for which we have reviewed. And
16 again on a continuing, ongoing rolling basis, as we review documents and
17 take additional witness statements, we will be disclosing those.
18 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, all right.
19 MS. SARTORIO: I can produce some statistics for Your Honours,
20 numbers of documents, if you wish, for the record.
21 JUDGE PARKER: No. As long as you see no particular problem
22 there, I don't think the record will feel upset if it doesn't get a whole
23 lot of statistics.
24 MS. SARTORIO: Okay. Thank you, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you very much, though.
1 Now, I understand, and I'll address this to all counsel, that
2 there may be some problem with the electronic disclosure system, a
3 technical problem affecting Defence counsel. Is it something that you
4 need to say something about, Mr. Prodanovic or Mr. Separovic?
5 MR. SEPAROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, everything that my
6 colleague from the Prosecution said is quite correct. They did submit
7 these documents to us. However, we have some technical problems in terms
8 of opening the material and reading it. We didn't manage to open some
9 documents at all; on others, we had little Xs or whatever, and yet others
10 we didn't manage to find at all.
11 Yesterday, after the meeting, we realised that the system
12 functions properly here in The Hague, in the building; however, the
13 problem lies in the Internet connections in Croatia. They are not stable.
14 When we open big materials, I mean a large number of pages, then we have
15 such problems. We agreed that we would have to enhance our technical
16 capabilities, get better Internet. And we think that that is the way of
17 dealing with this problem. We tried to deal with this yesterday, here in
18 the building, and we realised that the system was fine here but that the
19 problem, obviously, lay with the Internet connections in Croatia. So
20 that's it.
21 If we do not succeed, we will probably have to address the
22 Chamber, asking them to perhaps order the Prosecution to give us these
23 materials on CD, so that our clients, who are not very well-versed in such
24 matters, could become familiar with the material, and we too. We believe
25 that with faster Internet, this problem will have been resolved. However,
1 I must say that we had major problems with reading these materials in
3 JUDGE PARKER: Well, by the sound of what you say, Mr. Separovic,
4 it would be a matter for liaison between yourselves and the technical
5 people here in The Hague, probably from Croatia, so that you can discuss
6 the problem as it's happening and hopefully identify with greater accuracy
7 what it is that needs to be either adjusted or replaced with something
8 different, to enable you to get a reliable access. It ought to work. So
9 that if some liaison can identify the problem and get it corrected, that
10 will make life a lot easier for all of you, won't it? If it's something
11 beyond that, of course you'll have to come back.
12 MR. SEPAROVIC: [Interpretation] I agree. That's right.
13 JUDGE PARKER: Yes.
14 Now, I assume there will be full cooperation in that respect with
15 the Office of the Prosecutor?
16 MS. SARTORIO: Yes, Your Honour. And I have made inquiries myself
17 with Mr. Bob Reid, the Deputy -- Chief of Investigations, and he is going
18 to be meeting with OLAD and others to ensure that the proper assistance is
19 provided to the Defence attorneys. And in addition, I've spoken with the
20 person who is specifically appointed to work with Defence attorneys on
21 such matters, as problems with EDS, and he is committed as well to
22 ensuring that they get the proper assistance and training that they need.
23 JUDGE PARKER: Well, thank you for that. The important thing will
24 be to try and identify whatever is the technical problem and get that
25 remedied as quickly as possible.
1 MS. SARTORIO: Yes, Your Honour.
2 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
3 Now, Rule 70 disclosure, that's still alive, is it?
4 MS. SARTORIO: It is, Your Honour, and we have sent out requests
5 in over 500 -- for over 500 documents for permission to disclose those
6 documents. We are still awaiting decisions. We expect to have decisions
7 and disclosure made by our deadline, which is the 28th of February.
8 JUDGE PARKER: Very well.
9 MS. SARTORIO: And if I may, Your Honour, just to correct earlier
10 when we discussed Rule 66(A)(ii), we have, as you my, chronic problem with
11 translations, and many of the statements have not yet been translated.
12 But we have made requests, and we are going to encourage the Translation
13 Unit to, as much as they can, put our witness statements through.
14 JUDGE PARKER: Very well. Thank you.
15 You were going to provide copies of the interviews with the
16 accused, were you not? Where is that at?
17 MS. SARTORIO: We did that, Your Honour. Two days after the
18 Status Conference, we provided all the transcripts. Yesterday,
19 Mr. Separovic, who represents Mr. Markac, stated that he did not receive
20 it, the statement of Mr. Markac. Our records show that his co-counsel,
21 Mr. Mikulicic, had signed it, but as a courtesy result we provided
22 Mr. Separovic a copy of it today.
23 JUDGE PARKER: Well, that should overcome any hitch there.
24 MS. SARTORIO: Yes.
25 JUDGE PARKER: So you at the moment, apart from the business of
1 getting statements translated, you're seeing no problems with disclosure.
2 MS. SARTORIO: No, Your Honour.
3 JUDGE PARKER: And from the Defence point of view, the big problem
4 is to get the technical difficulty overcome so that you can get reliable
5 access to what is being made available. All right.
6 Agreed facts. Where have we got to with that, Ms. Sartorio?
7 MS. SARTORIO: Well, Your Honour, we have been concentrating
8 mainly on disclosure for the last three or four months, and I think we're
9 in a position now to turn to drafting some agreed facts and submitting
10 them to the Defence attorneys. And I know that Mr. Scott, the senior
11 trial attorney, and I are committed to doing that within the next couple
12 of months.
13 JUDGE PARKER: So nothing has been provided yet.
14 MS. SARTORIO: No, Your Honour.
15 JUDGE PARKER: That seems to be all the technical matters that I
16 need to inquire into. Is there any other general matter that you need to
17 raise, Ms. Sartorio?
18 MS. SARTORIO: None at this time, Your Honour.
19 JUDGE PARKER: All right, thank you.
20 Mr. Prodanovic, is there any particular issue that you need to
22 MR. PRODANOVIC: [Interpretation] No, nothing arising, Your Honour.
23 Thank you.
24 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
25 Mr. Separovic?
1 MR. SEPAROVIC: [Interpretation] No, thank you, Your Honour.
2 JUDGE PARKER: Very well. I understand from the senior legal
3 officer that there was an inquiry made about the terms of the conditions
4 under which the two accused are released. I notice that in paragraph 44
5 of the decision of the Appeals Chamber, subparagraph A, item 10, it's set
6 out that they are not to have any contact with each other or with any
7 other accused before this Tribunal. As I understood from the senior legal
8 officer, the query was whether the two accused were free to deal with each
9 other. Under the present order of the Appeals Chamber, the answer is no.
10 If that is a particular difficulty, there would need to be an application
11 brought to try to vary those terms, and there would have to be
12 justification offered for any such variation.
13 If I understand correctly from the senior legal officer, there's
14 also a question whether it might be possible to go some little distance to
15 a place of business or work. Again, under the terms of the present order
16 of the Appeals Chamber, that's not possible, so that if that is desired,
17 it will, again, be necessary to bring an application to vary the terms
18 upon which the Appeals Chamber has ordered provisional release.
19 I mention those two things in case that would assist Defence
20 counsel in understanding the position. And the application would be made
21 to Trial Chamber II for any variation that is sought. It would be in
22 writing, with the justification. The Office of the Prosecutor would be
23 able to respond. And then Trial Chamber II would reach a decision whether
24 there could be any variation in the present conditions of provisional
1 If there are no other matters, that concludes this conference. I
2 thank everybody for their attendance.
3 --- Whereupon the Status Conference adjourned at
4 2.50 p.m.