1 Friday, 27 June 2003
2 [Initial Appearance]
3 [Open session]
4 [The accused entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 2.19 p.m.
6 JUDGE LIU: Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen, Madam Registrar,
7 would you please call the case, please?
8 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honour. Good afternoon, Your Honour.
9 This is case number IT-95-12-I, the Prosecutor versus Ivica Rajic.
10 JUDGE LIU: May I have the appearances, please, for the
12 MR. SCOTT: Good afternoon, Your Honour. Kenneth Scott for the
13 Prosecutor, I'm joined today by Josee D'Aoust, the assistant in the trial
14 and our case manager, Lakshmie Walpita.
15 JUDGE LIU: Thank you, for the Defence?
16 MR. OLUJIC: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honour. I'm
17 Zeljko Olujic, counsel for Mr. Ivica Rajic, and we are meeting today with
18 respect to the scheduling order under the competence of the International
19 Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, thank you.
20 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much. We will proceed with initial
21 appearance of the accused, Ivica Rajic, pursuant to Rule 62 of the Rules
22 of Procedure and Evidence. The indictment against the accused was
23 initially confirmed on 29th August, 1995. International arrest warrant
24 was issued against the accused. On the 13th of September, 1996, the
25 indictment was confirmed and again international arrest warrants were
1 issued against the accused. The accused was arrested in Croatia on the
2 5th April, 2003 and transferred to the detention unit of the International
3 Tribunal on Tuesday, 24th June, 2003. By the order of the president of
4 the International Tribunal, dated 26th June, 2003, this case was assigned
5 to Trial Chamber 1, section A.
6 Mr. Rajic, you have to excuse me for I'm not good at pronouncing
7 your name. I have to ask you several questions. Can you hear the
8 proceedings in a language that you understand?
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes.
10 JUDGE LIU: Could you please give your full name or any nicknames
11 for the record?
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] My full name is Ivica Rajic and I
13 haven't got a nickname.
14 JUDGE LIU: I see. What are the date and the place of your birth,
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I was born on the 5th of May, 1958,
17 in the village of Johovac, Kiseljak.
18 JUDGE LIU: What is the address at which you resided before you
19 were arrested?
20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Johovac, Kiseljak.
21 JUDGE LIU: Are you family and the embassy of your state informed
22 about your arrest as well as your transfer to the detention unit in The
24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes, they have been informed.
25 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much. You may sit down, please.
1 Now I would like to ask the Registrar to read out the passage of
2 the Statute of the Tribunal that provides you with the certain number of
3 rights. Madam Registrar, would you please read out Article 20 and 21 of
4 the statute?
5 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honour. Article 20, Commencement and
6 conduct of trial proceedings.
7 1. The Trial Chamber will ensure that a trial is fair and
8 expeditious and that proceedings are conducted in accordance with the
9 Rules of Procedure and Evidence, with full respect for the rights of the
10 accused and due regard for the protection of victims and witnesses.
11 2. A person against whom an indictment has been confirmed shall,
12 pursuant to an order or arrest warrant of the International Tribunal, be
13 taken into custody, immediately informed of the charges against him and
14 transferred to the International Tribunal.
15 3. The Trial Chamber shall read the indictment, satisfy itself
16 that the rights of the accused are respected, confirm that the accused
17 understands the indictment and instruct the accused to enter a plea. The
18 Trial Chamber should then set a date for trial.
19 4. The hearings should be public unless the Trial Chamber decides
20 to close the proceedings in accordance with its Rules of Procedure and
22 Article 21, Rights of the accused.
23 1. All persons shall be equal before the International Tribunal.
24 2. In the determination of charges against him, the accused shall
25 be entitled to a fair and public hearing, subject to Article 22 of the
2 3. The accused shall be presumed innocent until proved guilty
3 according to the provisions of the present statute.
4 4. In the determination of any charge against the accused,
5 pursuant to the present statute, the accused shall be entitled to the
6 following minimum guarantees in full equality:
7 (a) To be informed promptly and in detail in a language which he
8 understands of the nature and cause of the charge against him;
9 (b) To have adequate time and facilities for the preparation of
10 his defence and to communicate with counsel of his own choosing;
11 (c) To be tried without undue delay;
12 (d) To be tried in his presence and to defends himself in person
13 or through legal assist answer of his own choosing. To be informed if he
14 does not have any legal assistance of this right and to have legal
15 assistance assigned to him in any case where the interests of justice so
16 required and without payment by him in any such case if he does not have
17 sufficient means to pay for it;
18 (e) To examine or have examined the witnesses against him and to
19 obtain the attendance and examination of witnesses on his behalf under the
20 same conditions as witnesses against him;
21 (f) To have the free assistance of the -- of an interpreter if he
22 cannot understand or speak the language used in the International
24 (g) Not to have compelled to testify against himself or to
25 confess guilt.
1 JUDGE LIU: Thank you. Mr. Rajic, have you received the
2 indictment against you in a language you understand?
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour, I have received
5 JUDGE LIU: Did you have a chance to read it?
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes.
7 JUDGE LIU: Do you understand its contents or the charges against
8 you in the indictment?
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes, I do understand.
10 JUDGE LIU: Have you had any opportunity to discuss the indictment
11 with your counsel?
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes.
13 JUDGE LIU: Thank you. Madam Registrar, would you please read out
14 the indictment, please?
15 THE REGISTRAR: The International Criminal Tribunal for the former
16 Yugoslavia. The Prosecutor of the Tribunal against Ivica Rajic, also
17 known as Viktor Andric.
18 Indictment, Prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunal for
19 the former Yugoslavia pursuant to his authority under Article 18 of the
20 Statute, charges:
21 During October, 1993, the armed forces of the self-proclaimed
22 Croatian Community of Herceg-Bosna, known as the Croatian Defence Council
23 (HVO), were engaged in an armed conflict with the armed forces of the
24 government of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
25 In October 1993, the town of Vares in central Bosnia was under the
1 control of HVO. Stupni Do, a village located approximately four
2 kilometres southeast of Vares, was inhabited by approximately 250 people
3 who were almost exclusively of Muslim origin. The inhabitants of the
4 village regarded themselves as part of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
5 On or about the 22nd of October, 1993, Ivica Rajic, who was the
6 commander of the Second Operational Group of the HVO based in Kiseljak,
7 came to Vares with HVO soldiers under his command. In the HVO military
8 chain of command, units of the HVO in Vares were under the regional
9 command of the Second Operational Group. On or about the 22nd of October
10 1993, the HVO forces in or about Vares, including the Bobovac Brigade,
11 came under the direct personal command of Ivica Rajic.
12 On the 23rd of October, 1993, at around 0800 hours or thereabouts,
13 units of the HVO under Ivica Rajic's command attacked the village of
14 Stupni Do. When the attack had been completed by the HVO, at least 16
15 members of the civilian population had been killed. The village was
16 almost totally destroyed and the inhabitants who had not been killed had
17 been forced to flee.
18 The Accused:
19 Ivica Rajic also known as Viktor Andric, son of Ivan, was born on
20 the 5th of May, 1958, in the village of Johovac, in the municipality of
21 Kiseljak, in Bosnia-Herzegovina. He is a graduate of a military academy
22 of the former Yugoslavia and was formerly a captain (first class) in the
23 former Yugoslavia People's Army.
24 In August, 1992, Ivica Rajic became the HVO commander of the
25 Second Operational Group for the region covering the municipalities of
1 Kiseljak, Kresevo and Vares. He occupied this position in October, 1993.
2 General allegations:
3 During October, 1993, a state of armed conflict existed in the
4 Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
5 At all relevant times, the victims and property referred to in
6 this indictment were protected under the applicable provisions of the
7 Geneva Conventions.
8 At all relevant times, the victims and property referred to in
9 this indictment were protected by the law or customs of war.
10 At all times, Ivica Rajic was required to abide by the laws and
11 customs governing the conduct of war and all applicable provisions of the
12 Geneva Convention.
14 On or about the 23rd of October, 1993, Ivica Rajic as commander of
15 the HVO forces of the Second Operational Group, which included those HVO
16 forces in Vares, ordered an unlawful attack against a civilian population
17 and individual citizens of the village of Stupni Do, causing death and
18 injuries to that civilian population and individual citizens and the
19 almost total destruction of the village. In doing so, Ivica Rajic
21 Count 1: A grave breach of the Geneva Convention of 1949, as
22 recognised by Article 2(a) (wilful killing) and 7(1) of the Statute;
23 Count 2: A grave breach of the Geneva Conventions of 1949, as
24 recognised by Article 2(d) (destruction of property) and 7(1) of the
25 Statute; and
1 Count 3: Violations of the laws or customs of war as recognised
2 by Article 3 (deliberate attack on the civilian population and wanton
3 destruction of the village) and 7(1) of the statute.
4 Or alternatively:
5 On or about the 23rd of October, 1993, Ivica Rajic, as commander
6 of the HVO forces of the Second Operational Group, which included those
7 forces in Vares, knew or had reason to know that a subordinate and
8 subordinates in the HVO was or were about to unlawfully attack and did
9 attack the civilian population and individual citizens of Stupni Do,
10 causing death and injury to that civilian population and individual
11 citizens and the almost total destruction of the village. Ivica Rajic
12 failed to take the necessary and reasonable measures to prevent such an
13 attack and failed to punish the perpetrators of these unlawful attacks.
14 In doing so, Ivica Rajic committed:
15 Count 4: A grave breach of the Geneva Conventions of 1949 as
16 recognised by Article 2(a) (wilful killing) and 7(3) of the statute.
17 Count 5: A grave breach of the Geneva Conventions of 1949, as
18 recognised by Article 2(d) (destruction of property) and 7(3) of the
19 statute; and.
20 Count 6: Violations of the laws or customs of war, as recognised
21 by Article 3 (deliberate attack on the civilian population and
22 wanton destruction of the village) and 7(3) of the Statute.
23 Dated 23rd August, 1995. Signed by Prosecutor Richard J.
25 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much.
1 Mr. Rajic, you have the right to plead guilty or not guilty to
2 each count, either today or within 30 days from this initial appearance.
3 Shall you fail to enter a plea within this time limit, the Trial Chamber
4 will enter a plea of not guilty on your behalf. Are you prepared to enter
5 your plea today?
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes.
7 JUDGE LIU: My suggestion is I will now repeat the individual
8 charges brought against you and I will then ask you whether you plead
9 guilty or not guilty to the specific charge. Your answer in each case
10 should be guilty or not guilty as the case may be. Do you understand
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes, I understand that.
13 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
14 Let's begin.
15 Count 1 contains a charge of wilful killing, a grave breach of the
16 Geneva Conventions of 1949, punishable under Article 2(a) and Article 7(1)
17 of the statute of the Tribunal. How do you plead, guilty or not guilty?
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I plead not guilty.
19 JUDGE LIU: Count 2 contains a charge of destruction of property,
20 a grave breach of the Geneva Conventions of 1949, punishable under Article
21 2(d) and Article 7(1) of the Statute of the Tribunal. How do you plead,
22 guilty or not guilty?
23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Your Honour, not guilty.
24 JUDGE LIU: Count 3 contains a charge of deliberate attack on the
25 civilian population and wanton destruction of the villages as a violations
1 of the laws or customs of war punishable under Article 3 and Article 7(1)
2 of the Statute of the Tribunal. How do you plead, guilty or not guilty?
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Your Honour, not guilty.
4 JUDGE LIU: Alternatively, you are charged with count 4 which
5 contains a charge of wilful killing, a grave breach of the Geneva
6 Conventions of 1949, punishable under Article 2(a) and Article 7(3) of the
7 Statute of the Tribunal. How do you plead, guilty or not guilty?
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Your Honour, not guilty.
9 JUDGE LIU: Count 4, which contains a charge of destruction of
10 property, a grave breach of the Geneva Conventions of 1949, punishable
11 under Articles 2(a) and Article 7(3) of the Statute of the Tribunal. How
12 do you plead, guilty or not guilty?
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Your Honour, not guilty.
14 JUDGE LIU: Count 6 contains a charge of deliberate attack on the
15 civilian population and wanton destruction of the village as violations of
16 the laws or customs of war punishable under Article 3 and Article 7(3) of
17 the Statute of the Tribunal. How do you plead, guilty or not guilty?
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Your Honour, not guilty.
19 JUDGE LIU: Thank you, sir. You may sit down, please.
20 I'm sorry, there is a mistake because in the transcript I saw two
21 count 4s there, I think the second count 4 should be count 5.
22 May the Registrar please take note that Mr. Rajic has pleaded not
23 guilty to all the counts of the indictment?
24 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE LIU: And the Registrar will be instructed to fix a date for
1 trial when appropriate. The accused is remanded in custody until further
2 order. He may, however, file a motion on provisional release pursuant to
3 Rule 65 of the Rules of Procedure and Evidence. At this stage, are there
4 any matters that the Prosecution wishes to raise at this stage? Yes,
5 Mr. Scott?
6 MR. SCOTT: May it please the Court, not really this afternoon.
7 We do of course commit to provide the supporting material within the 30
8 days required by the rule and we anticipate no trouble in doing that.
9 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much. Are there any matters that
10 Defence or the accused wish to raise at this stage?
11 MR. OLUJIC: [Interpretation] Not at this stage, Your Honour. No
12 matters except that we expect the Prosecution within the 30 day time limit
13 to disclose all the supporting material pursuant to the rules so that we
14 can begin the Defence case. Thank you.
15 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much. Any way, I would like to remind
16 the Prosecution that pursuant to Rule 66 of the Rules of Procedure and
17 Evidence, it has 30 days to disclose to the Defence in a language which
18 the accused understands all the supporting materials which accompanied the
19 indictment when the confirmation was sought. The Defence is advised that
20 pursuant to Rule 72(A), it will have 30 days period for filing any
21 preliminary motion once it has received all the supporting materials in
22 accordance with Rule 66.
23 For the expeditious preparation of the case, a Status Conference
24 will be scheduled within 120 days from today, pursuant to Rule 65 bis(A).
25 I think that's all for this initial appearance. We will now adjourn the
2 --- Whereupon the Initial Appearance
3 adjourned at 2.45 p.m.