1 Monday, 4 May 2009
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 2.15 p.m.
5 JUDGE PARKER: Good afternoon. Mr. Stamp, I hear you may have
6 some news for us.
7 MR. STAMP: Good afternoon. Thank you very much, Your Honours.
8 Yes. I have unhappy news. Sadly, the witness scheduled for today and
9 tomorrow, Zarko Brakovic has had to be hospitalised today and is now
10 being subjected to some tests for suspected appendicitis, and he is
11 certainly not available for this afternoon, I'm told.
12 I did try to get an update from the Victim and Witnesses Unit
13 through our investigators just before I came to court. There is no
14 update. Last information is that he was sent for tests, and therefore he
15 will not be available. I think it would be unlikely that he'd be
16 available for the rest of the day. It is possible that the tests might
17 be negative, in which case he might be available sometime tomorrow.
18 The witness who we had scheduled to be in on Thursday -- sorry,
19 on Wednesday, Mr. Fred Abrahams, will not be available -- we can bring
20 him forward a bit, but he will not be able to start until sometime
21 tomorrow afternoon if he's brought forward. As a matter of fact that
22 would be a stress for him, but he has indicated that he would be prepared
23 to start then. He is an international who has travelled a long distance
24 to get here and is also somebody who is -- who has always cooperated with
25 the efforts of the OTP.
1 There were, for this week, some civilian witnesses. These are
2 the Kosovo Albanian crime base witnesses who are -- who are usually the
3 persons we'd want as reserve witnesses, because they normally will
4 have -- or be prepared to spend some more time here, but there -- there
5 was a problem with them, I am told. The national office for -- for visas
6 in the Netherlands
7 Victim and Witnesses Unit is not able to get any visas for them to get
8 them here to stand in reserve, at least for the beginning of this week.
9 They will be available at the end -- well, not at the end, but I'm told
10 they would be available from the middle of the week and will be in
11 reserve for -- to testify after Mr. Abrahams is completed.
12 So in those circumstances, Your Honours, there is no witness
13 available to testify today.
14 JUDGE PARKER: Yes. Well, things of that nature will undoubtedly
15 occur. There seems little point in us having everybody stand by in the
16 off chance that this witness, (a) might not be diagnosed with
17 appendicitis; (b)might thereby be available and able to give evidence.
18 Because if the man is in hospital, I think it must be expected that even
19 if his problem is not appendicitis, he will still have a problem.
20 MR. STAMP: Indeed.
21 JUDGE PARKER: That brings us then to tomorrow. If the witness
22 in the hospital is available, all will be well, but that you will not
23 know until late today or first thing in the morning.
24 MR. STAMP: Indeed, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE PARKER: If he is not available, Mr. Abrahams, from what I
1 gather, would be available at the earliest during the afternoon, not at
2 the beginning of the afternoon.
3 MR. STAMP: Indeed, Your Honour.
4 JUDGE PARKER: When is he expected to arrive?
5 MR. STAMP: He's here. He has arrived in The Hague, but he needs
6 to prepare himself. He has -- he's coming from afar, I think. He's a --
7 he's one of the senior analysts for Human Rights Watch, so he travels
8 from great distances. I can't say precisely where he's coming from, but
9 he needs at least a day to acclimatize and prepare himself to testify.
10 His testimony in the last two cases that he appeared in this Tribunal
11 were in excess of four days each.
12 JUDGE PARKER: He should not be that time with us in view of his
13 extensive previous cross-examination, but some time will be necessary
14 with him, obviously. And we cannot expect anything from the victim
15 witnesses until late in the week, perhaps Thursday afternoon or Friday.
16 MR. STAMP: From the -- the crime-base witnesses, I think they
17 will be available on Wednesday, or they could be made available on
18 Wednesday or Thursday.
19 JUDGE PARKER: That would seem to be unlikely Wednesday because
20 Mr. Abrahams will be here and in the course of evidence.
21 MR. STAMP: They would be in reserve, of course, but they would
22 be available.
23 JUDGE PARKER: Perhaps Thursday.
24 MR. STAMP: Yes. Yes, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Stamp.
1 MR. STAMP: Thank you, Your Honours.
2 [Trial Chamber confers]
3 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Djurdjic, is there some matter you would like
4 to assist us with?
5 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.
6 Unfortunately, I cannot help. This is an extraordinary situation. I
7 just wanted to contribute an explanation.
8 We were informed by the OTP last week about the testimony of
9 Brakovic, and there was also a schedule for his testimony and also for
10 the testimony of Mr. Abrahams. The same goes for the two witnesses that
11 were scheduled to testify after the 11th. However, we were able to
12 complete the testimonies of these evidence -- these witnesses last week,
13 so now the Defence is not prepared for the reserve witnesses that we
15 I would like the OTP, that is Mr. Stamp, to tell me which
16 witnesses we're talking about in terms of future reserve witnesses so for
17 us to be able to prepare. Also, I would like to do the following: If
18 Mr. Abrahams starts testifying tomorrow, if possible that he testify in
19 the afternoon, because we were focused on Mr. Brakovic. So if possible,
20 we would like not to start before 2.15 p.m. tomorrow if Mr. Abrahams is
21 ready to testify at that time.
22 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Djurdjic. Fortunately it would
23 seem for your own preparation the delays caused by the condition of
24 Mr. Brakovic will enable you to be ready to deal with the future
25 witnesses. If -- if it is the case that Mr. Stamp has not already
1 informed you of the factual witnesses who will be available in reserve
2 late in the week, I'm sure he will do so when we rise, and that he will
3 continue to keep you advised of the reserve witnesses as we progress
4 through the trial.
5 In the Chamber's view, Mr. Stamp, if it is the case that
6 Mr. Brakovic is not available tomorrow morning, and that seems unlikely
7 in view of the message I've just been given which suggests that he's in
8 considerable pain at this moment, if he's not available for the time we
9 had planned to sit tomorrow, which was midmorning, not at 9.00, then we
10 will commence sitting at 2.00 p.m.
11 evidence so far as it can proceed of Mr. Abrahams. And we will have two
12 sessions of an hour and a half. I'm afraid I had made commitments in the
13 expectation that the session would finish by 5.00 tomorrow, so we won't
14 be able to have the full three and three-quarter hours of a normal
15 session, but we will be able to have three hours. We will then continue
16 that programme with Mr. Abrahams.
17 MR. STAMP: Your Honour.
18 JUDGE PARKER: That is subject to the availability of
19 Mr. Brakovic. If contrary to expectations he is available in the morning
20 for the time that we had set, we'll hear Mr. Brakovic and then go to
21 Mr. Abrahams. I think the realistic expectation must be that we will not
22 be able to hear Mr. Brakovic because of his health, and we will therefore
23 commence at 2.00 tomorrow to hear Mr. Abrahams.
24 MR. STAMP: Very well, Your Honour. Thank you. May I just say,
25 Your Honours, for the record and for the benefit of my friends in the
1 court, that in accordance with an earlier ruling by the Trial Chamber,
2 the reserve witnesses will be the next witnesses on the schedule. We
3 give the witnesses two weeks in advance. So the reserve witnesses for
4 this week would be the coming witnesses for next week will be brought
5 forward, unless we have to insert a witness who was not notified. I just
6 would like to advise the parties or the Defence that the reserve
7 witnesses are the next succeeding witnesses according to the schedule.
8 JUDGE PARKER: Well, that's helpful, and it will be helpful, I'm
9 sure, to Mr. Djurdjic if you can maintain that practice, and thank you
10 for that.
11 I'm afraid, regrettably to the process of the trial, we must now
12 adjourn. If the witness Brakovic is available, we will resume tomorrow
13 at 10.00. If the witness is not available, we will resume tomorrow at
15 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 2.30 p.m.
16 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 5th day
17 of May, 2009, at 10.00 a.m. or 2.00 p.m.