1 Tuesday, 18 March 2008
2 [Pre-Trial Conference]
3 [Open session]
4 [The accused entered court]
5 [The accused Stanisic not present in court]
6 --- Upon commencing at 10.02 a.m.
7 JUDGE ROBINSON: First I'd like to apologise for the late start.
8 The Chamber has been holding consultations that will have an important
9 bearing on the trial proceedings.
10 Next I'd like to say that notwithstanding the fact that these
11 proceedings relate to the medical condition of the accused, I have, after
12 consultation with the medical doctor at the UNDU, determined that it is
13 in the interests of justice and in the good administration of the trial
14 that the proceedings should be public.
15 Let us move now to the information that we have concerning the
16 present medical status of the accused. We have, and I believe you also
17 have, a report from Dr. Falke, the Medical Officer of the UNDU. It has
18 the date of the 17th of March and it states that the state of health of
19 the accused has not changed since his submission of the 14th. He then
20 looks at his physical condition, notes that he suffers from pouchitis,
21 osteoporosis and has kidney stones, and that the combination of those
22 three conditions and the symptoms determine his present physical
24 As to his emotional status, he says that the accused is in a deep
25 depression for which he is being treated by a psychiatrist, and that that
1 treatment would take some time because the causes of the depression are
2 partly of a permanent nature. That depression, he says, exacerbates his
3 physical condition, and vice versa.
4 The report of the gastroenterologist, who conducted his
5 examination of the accused yesterday, is not yet available. He says
6 relevantly: "Mr. Stanisic will not be medically fit to attend the
7 hearings tomorrow." That is today's proceedings. "A prognosis as to
8 when he will be fit to attend court is not possible at this time, but we
9 will inform you when some concrete information is available on this
11 With regard to the third point in the order of the Court he says:
12 "Further expert examinations are contraindicated at this point from a
13 medical point of view as they can further increase the anxiety of the
14 patient and can act as a catalyst to the depression." And he says that
15 he expresses these concerns in the exercise of his responsibility as the
16 medical officer under Rule 34(B) of the Rules of Detention.
17 The next piece of information that I have and which I believe you
18 also have is the standard form relating to absence from court due to
19 illness, and as you can see, as was the case with yesterday, it has not
20 been signed by the accused, thereby indicating that the accused has not
21 waived his right to be present.
22 Now, in the light of the report of Dr. Falke, the Chamber has
23 been considering how best to proceed, and what the Chamber has in mind is
24 as follows:
25 We have a break for Easter which will commence on Friday, being
1 Good Friday, and we are set to resume on Tuesday, the 1st of April. It
2 appears to the Chamber that this hiatus offers an opportunity for the
3 accused to recover from his illness, and it would be the hope of the
4 Chamber that the accused would be fit to attend court on the 1st of
6 In relation to that, however, the Chamber will require the
7 Registrar to appoint an independent psychiatrist to examine the accused
8 on or about Friday, the 28th - that's next week Friday - and to present a
9 report by Monday, the 31st. That report, of course, will be supplemented
10 by the report of the gastroenterologist, whose report we were informed by
11 Dr. Falke is not yet ready but would undoubtedly be ready by that time.
12 Additionally, we'll have the weekly report of Dr. Falke.
13 So we'll have three reports - the report of the independent
14 psychiatrist, the gastroenterologist, and Dr. Falke. On the basis of
15 those reports we'll determine how to proceed on the 1st of April in the
16 event that the accused is not in a position to attend court. But it is
17 the expectation of the Chamber that the accused will be in a position to
18 attend. He's getting the best available treatment and we wish him a very
19 speedy recovery.
20 May I ask if any of the parties has anything to say in relation
21 to these matters?
22 Yes, Mr. Groome.
23 MR. GROOME: Your Honour, the only thing I would add, we have not
24 received those reports so we would appreciate if the Registrar could
25 provide them. The only observation that I would make is it seems that
1 Dr. Domenicus is a psychiatrist who is actively treating Mr. Stanisic at
2 this time. It would seem that it might also be good for the Court to
3 have the reports of Dr. Domenicus before them as the treating
4 psychiatrist that may also help inform the Chamber's opinion with respect
5 to his ability to participate in the trial on April 1st.
6 JUDGE ROBINSON: We did consider that and decided against it and
7 felt that it would be better to get the report of a totally independent
9 Mr. Knoops.
10 MR. KNOOPS: Your Honour, I agree with this approach. Our
11 observation would have been that in -- according to our information,
12 Dr. Domenicus was not the treating psychiatrist. But Your Honours have
13 already made the decision.
14 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Jovanovic?
15 MR. JOVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, thank you. I have
16 no further comments to offer about the situation.
17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you.
18 [Trial Chamber confers]
19 JUDGE ROBINSON: In that event, then, we adjourn until Tuesday,
20 the 1st of April.
21 --- Whereupon the Pre-Trial Conference adjourned at
22 10.13 a.m., to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 1st
23 day of April, 2008, at 2.15 p.m.