1 Wednesday, 14 March 2007
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.10 a.m.
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Registrar, will you please
6 call the case.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Mr. President. Case IT-04-74-T, the
8 Prosecutor versus Prlic and others.
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] First of all, good morning,
10 Mr. Registrar, who has rejoined us to stand in for an absence today.
11 I bid good morning to the Prosecution, the ladies and gentlemen of
12 the Defence teams, as well as the accused.
13 We are 10 minutes late due to a technical problem. I hope that
14 this problem will be resolved shortly, and we will be able to see the
15 transcript, I hope, on our screens soon.
16 THE REGISTRAR: 2D has submitted a list of objections to the
17 admission of evidence of the OTP's list of Witness Mirjan Biskic. That
18 will be given Exhibit number IC 484. And 3D has submitted a reply to the
19 Prosecution's objection to exhibits tendered through Witness Marijan
20 Biskic and that shall be given Exhibit number 485. Thank you.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Registrar.
22 I think Mr. Karnavas has -- we have a few minutes left, but let us
23 have the witness brought in. I think, Mr. Karnavas, you wanted to take
24 the floor. I don't know on what point.
25 MR. KARNAVAS: On a couple of points, Mr. President. I don't
1 object to the witness being here but I want to do this in open session, so
2 I think it's best to do this without the presence of the witness.
3 First, I believe I owe an apology to the Trial Chamber,
4 particularly to you, Mr. President, for my outburst yesterday. I wish to
5 apologise to you, to members of the Trial Chamber, as well as to everybody
6 in the courtroom for my outburst. I think it was unprofessional to raise
7 my voice against the Bench. I will try to make sure that I maintain my
8 composure for the rest of the trial. I can't guarantee it, but I will
9 certainly try to do so.
10 As for the reasons for my outburst, however, I wish to bring to
11 the Court's attention that those were justified. I think that this trial
12 has to be conducted the way other trials are being conducted in this
13 Tribunal in the sense that the parties should be allowed to ask
14 questions. The Judges may ask some clarification questions, but may ask
15 their own questions at the conclusion of when the parties are finished
16 their questioning and to allow then the parties any follow-up questions
17 after the Judges' questions. That is the procedure that is adopted at
18 this Tribunal. That is the procedure that is followed in every court
19 except this one.
20 I raise this because there is an issue of procedural justice. I
21 think that everybody that is sitting in the dock is entitled to the same
22 trial process as everyone else in this Tribunal. I think the Prosecution
23 is entitled to put on its case in the manner in which they feel it's
24 necessary because they have that burden of proof, and we support them in
25 that effort. At the same time, we should be able to put on our case,
1 which also means through cross-examination in a manner which we see fit,
2 because, after all, we are trying to make a record, a record that is going
3 to be necessary for us when it comes time for the final brief and the
4 closing arguments.
5 We recognise that the Trial Chamber has questions of its own.
6 Those questions can be asked and should be asked, but I say there is a --
7 sort of a sequence of this.
8 Given that we have time limitations, Mr. President and
9 Your Honours, it takes a tremendous amount of time to prepare. For this
10 one-hour witness we have in the Prlic Defence team approximately 50 hours
11 of preparation. Fifty hours of preparation for one hour. And so it is
12 not a matter of saying, okay, I ask some questions, now I'll go back and
13 fix it. When I have only 15 minutes and a half an hour it is a great
14 disturbance. And I understand that the Trial Chamber is impatient, but in
15 the adversarial session, Mr. President and Your Honours, Judges are paid
16 to be patient. That is part of the job, because they are not a
17 participant. They are more like a referee, and that's a frustration,
18 obviously, to the Bench, but nonetheless it is something that is -- that
19 comes with the territory that comes with this particular procedure.
20 I would invite the Trial Chamber to schedule a hearing as soon as
21 possible so that we can clear up some issues that we -- have been raised
22 in writing, issues also that the Prosecution wish to -- to be heard on but
23 other issues as well, and the main issue is, in my opinion, is this
24 procedural justice? How are we going to proceed? We are running a little
25 bit behind schedule but this is a big trial. The Prosecution has spent
1 years preparing this case. They're entitled to put on their case. The
2 victims are entitled to be heard through the Prosecution. The accused are
3 entitled to counter the Prosecution's case through its own evidence and in
4 a manner it sees fit, and we should have adequate time and resources to do
5 so. So that's why we need this hearing.
6 I would welcome at this hearing -- if the Trial Chamber were to
7 schedule a hearing, I would welcome also the participation of members of
8 the Bureau so that this can be an open and frank discussion and how are we
9 asking to have this procedural justice in this particular case. Are we
10 going to have a new system that is independent and different from other
11 Trial Chambers or are we going to fall in line with the other Trial
12 Chambers with some slight modifications but not so dramatic in this
13 particular case that make it virtually -- has made this trial into a civil
14 law procedure as opposed to an adversarial procedure under the mixed
15 procedure that has been adopted by the Tribunal and the jurisprudence that
16 has emerged therefrom.
17 Now, if the Trial Chamber is disinclined to give us a hearing for
18 whatever reason, I seriously -- it is my position, and I've never had a
19 problem in speaking truth to power. I think it's pretty obvious by now.
20 Maybe my tone of voice, maybe my demeanour is not as eloquent, is not as
21 measured as my colleagues, especially who come from the UK who are very
22 eloquent advocates. Unfortunately, I lack those skills, but I've never
23 had the problem of speaking truth to power, and my position is,
24 Your Honours, if the Trial Chamber does not think that it's necessary to
25 have a hearing, if it does not think that it's necessary to have the sort
1 of procedure adopted in this Trial Chamber that is being followed by all
2 other cases where other accused are being tried, then I think that the
3 members of the Trial Chamber should seriously consider disqualifying
4 themselves in this case.
5 I am not moving for disqualification at this point in time, but I
6 think it's something that the Trial Chamber or members of the Trial
7 Chamber should seriously consider. Maybe because of the -- the heavy
8 weight that is being put upon this particular Trial Chamber with the
9 completion strategy, with the lack of space, with so many cases being
10 tried, for a variety of reasons, I don't know, but I think that unless we
11 clear this matter up - how we're going to proceed - and we can have a
12 process that is uniform, so that on any given day whether it's courtroom
13 I, II, or III, the trials are being conducted in the same manner. The
14 parties are being given the same access.
15 I saw Mr. Scott yesterday. He was trying to fumble through his
16 documents because he spent a tremendous amount of time preparing his
17 case. He knows exactly what he needs to do. I commend him. I don't
18 agree with a lot that he does, but one thing that can be said about this
19 gentleman is, both him and Mr. Mundis, is that they are very, very well
20 prepared. They know exactly what they want to do. So they should be
21 allowed to do that; we should be allowed to do what we want to do. What
22 I'm saying, Your Honours is, one, I would like to have a hearing where we
23 can clear these matters up, including the matters which the Prosecution
24 has raised given the remand from the -- from the Appeals Chamber, but also
25 can we have a procedure here that is uniform and consistent with the
1 other -- with the other trials. That's my primary concern.
2 If we -- I would like for the Trial Chamber to consider whether
3 members of the Bureau, that is the President of the Tribunal, other
4 Presidents of Trial Chambers should be invited to participate. I'm not
5 suggesting that's necessary but I think it's something that may be good.
6 If a hearing is not going to be provided to us, then I think
7 members of the Trial Chamber should seriously consider whether they --
8 whether they should continue to serve on the Bench or whether they should
9 disqualify themselves on the basis that they are unable to provide the
10 procedural justice, not just substantive justice, to the accused that are
11 sitting here. Each and every one of them are fighting for their lives
12 through us. They deserve to have a fair trial. We're not saying it's
13 unfair, but the process is -- is to the point where it appears unfair, and
14 in my opinion we're dangerously coming to the point where it is becoming
15 unfair because we are unable, the parties are unable to put their cases
16 forward in the manner in which they prepared.
17 So I mention this with the utmost respect, and again let me
18 apologise to you, Mr. President, let me apologise to everyone in the
19 courtroom for my outburst. It is -- it was shameful in my part -- from my
20 part. I shamed myself, my colleagues, my client, my fellow lawyers on the
21 Defence bar, in the manner in which I spoke to the Bench yesterday and the
22 tone I did.
23 But as for the content - as for the content - I remain
24 unapologetic. I'm afraid I'm to the point where I'm afraid Mr. Prlic is
25 not going to get a fair trial and I am going to fail him. And in my
1 attempt to make sure I don't fail him I'm sitting here looking at you,
2 Your Honours, speaking truth to power, and I'm saying: Give us a hearing,
3 let us adopt a procedure that is being followed in all other cases in this
4 Tribunal. Thank you.
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Madam Alaburic, please be
7 I don't intend to respond to what you have just said.
8 We are going to continue with the hearing of the witness.
9 Mr. Registrar, would you please pull down the blinds. We're
10 going to have the witness brought in, and we're going to go into closed
12 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, if I may, in the
13 meantime I have just one sentence I would like to say. I would like to
14 say that though we didn't know our colleague Karnavas was going to raise
15 this issue, that this is a topic that we have discussed and that other
16 Defence teams are also aware of those procedural justice problems and so
17 we associate ourselves to his suggestions.
18 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, for the record, I wish
19 to note, as my learned friend has, that what Mr. Karnavas has said is
20 something that my Defence team also supports. Thank you.
21 MR. MURPHY: Your Honour, the Stojic Defence also has the same
22 concerns, and we would like the opportunity to address them in the manner
23 that Mr. Karnavas has indicated.
24 MS. TOMASEGOVIC TOMIC: [Interpretation] We also join our other
25 colleagues on the Defence in supporting the suggestions.
1 [Closed session]
11 Pages 15635-15734 redacted. Closed session
7 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.47 p.m.
8 To be reconvened on Thursday, the 15th day
9 of March, 2007, at 9.00 a.m.