Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 15472

 1                           Friday, 30 January 2009

 2                           [Open session]

 3                           [The accused entered court]

 4                           [The witness entered court]

 5                           --- Upon commencing at 9.06 a.m.

 6             JUDGE ORIE:  Good morning to everyone.

 7             Mr. Registrar, would you please call the case.

 8             THE REGISTRAR:  Good morning, Your Honours.  Good morning to

 9     everyone in the courtroom.  This is case number IT-06-90-T, The

10     Prosecutor versus Ante Gotovina, et al.

11             JUDGE ORIE:  Thank you, Mr. Registrar.

12             Mr. Lausic, again I'd like to remind you that you're still bound

13     by the solemn declaration you've given at the beginning of your

14     testimony, that you would speak the truth the whole truth and nothing but

15     the truth.

16             Mr. Misetic are you ready to proceed.

17             MR. MISETIC:  I am, Mr. President.

18             JUDGE ORIE:  Please do so.

19                           WITNESS:  MATE LAUSIC [Resumed]

20                           [Witness answered through interpreter]

21                           Cross-examination by Mr. Misetic: [Continued]

22        Q.   Good morning, Mr. Lausic.

23        A.   Good morning, Mr. Misetic.

24        Q.   Let me take you back to where we left off last night to refresh

25     your memory.

Page 15473

 1             MR. MISETIC:  If we could have Exhibit P877 on the screen,

 2     Mr. Registrar.

 3        Q.   And, again, just this is to refresh your recollection, but this

 4     is the order that you issued on 18th August following your receipt of the

 5     letter from Mr. Moric on the 17th, and you issued it to all of the

 6     military police battalions.

 7             MR. MISETIC:  And, Mr. Registrar, if I could now have

 8     Exhibit D1071, please.

 9        Q.   This is the report, the next day, issued to you or sent to you by

10     the commander of the 72nd Military Police Battalion, Mr. Budimir,

11     directly to you, pursuant to the order you had issued the day before

12     requiring implementation of certain measures and requiring a report back

13     to you about the implementation of the measures in your order.  And in

14     the -- it begins, he specifically cites the fact that you had issued the

15     order and that he was acting pursuant to that order and that it was

16     concerning the most efficient possible cooperation with the MUP.

17             MR. MISETIC:  If we can turn the page.

18        Q.   And he reports on what he had done pursuant to your order.  He

19     says meeting were held in point 1 with the head of the police sector in

20     Split of the police administration, joint check-points were agreed, joint

21     patrols in the newly liberated territories.  He tells you that in Sinj

22     there was a meeting between a Mr. Mate Bilobrk and Captain Jenic of the

23     5th Company.  Joint action in all segments as in Item 1 of this order was

24     agreed, laying emphasis on control of road traffic.  In point 3, again

25     similar meetings in Sibenik.

Page 15474

 1             MR. MISETIC:  And if we could turn the page please.

 2        Q.   And then he reports in point 4 that a meeting wasn't held in the

 3     Zadar-Knin police administration because Mr. Ivica Cetina, the head of

 4     the police administration, he had orders to establish contact at the

 5     level of command of the 71st and 72nd Battalions and no orders on

 6     establishing contact at the lower levels.

 7             Now, from Mr. Budimir's report, did you conclude that in fact

 8     Mr. Budimir had compiled with your order?

 9        A.   Yes.  As far as I can see, all of the points of my order were

10     implemented.

11        Q.   And you note from the report that Mr. Budimir is reporting

12     directly to you and is not copying anyone else on what he was doing to

13     implement your order.  Correct?

14        A.   One cannot see that from this document.

15                           [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]

16             MR. MISETIC:  May I proceed, Mr. President.

17             JUDGE ORIE:  You may.

18             MR. MISETIC:  Thank you.

19             Mr. Registrar, if we could have Exhibit D1072 on the screen,

20     please.

21        Q.   This is your order from the 30th of August.  The subject again is

22     coordinates meetings with members of the MUP regarding more effective

23     cooperation and joint consideration.

24             And you reference a 1994 order, and then again the

25     18 August order that we've seen this morning.

Page 15475

 1             MR. MISETIC:  If we could turn the page in English.

 2        Q.   You, in the preamble say:

 3             "After successfully carrying out Operation Storm, all military

 4     police units, expect for the 68th, established full military and police

 5     control over their areas of responsibility.

 6             "Consequently commanders of these military police units are

 7     responsible for maintaining public law and order, crime control, and

 8     security of road traffic for members of the Croatian army.  They will

 9     ensure that these tasks are carried out by executing the authority of the

10     military police and working in close coordination with commanders of

11     police stations and chiefs of police administrations ..."

12             Now, that was an accurate statement of fact that it was the

13     commanders of the military police units that were responsible for

14     maintaining public law and order, crime control, and security of road

15     traffic.  Correct?

16        A.   Yes.  In keeping with the tasks and scope of activity of the

17     military police.

18        Q.   Okay.

19             MR. MISETIC:  If we could turn the page in the B/C/S, please.

20        Q.   You then issue an order and you say that:

21             "In their areas of responsibility, commanders of the military

22     police units shall determine the levels of coordination meetings (platoon

23     commanders - to commanders of the police stations, company commanders to

24     the chiefs of the police stations) and ensure that they take place every

25     week.  At these meetings, the following issues should be analysed in

Page 15476

 1     detail:  The security situation in the area of responsibility; work and

 2     cooperation between patrol and policing services, check-points, on-site

 3     investigations ..."

 4             MR. MISETIC:  I'm not sure if we have an accurate translation

 5     there, Mr. President, but ...

 6        Q.   It says:  "Forensic anlayses, control and regulation of military

 7     road traffic; joint review of demobilization of HV units," et cetera,

 8     et cetera.

 9             At point 2 --

10             MR. MISETIC:  If we could turn the page in English.

11        Q.    "Daily exchange of daily reports, an unobstructed system of

12     communications between duty services, and prompt response following a

13     call by a duty service of the police station, police administration, and

14     the other way around."

15             Point 4 you say:

16             "I hereby hold commanders of the VP battalions and VP independent

17     companies responsible for failure to hold cooperation meetings or failing

18     to have effective and practical cooperation."

19             It is then forwarded also to Mr. Moric, Mr. Rebic, and the chiefs

20     of the departments of the military police administration.

21             Again, this was an order, your effort, your attempt, to improve

22     the general level of security in the liberated territories.  Correct?

23        A.   That is correct.  That was one of the efforts we put in.

24        Q.   And you were implementing your efforts through your battalion

25     commanders in the field.  Correct?

Page 15477

 1        A.   Yes, it is.

 2        Q.   And to do that, there was no need to copy anyone in the military

 3     line on this order.

 4        A.   As you can see, it was sent to the MOD, which then to my

 5     superior, who was assistant commander for security, as well as to the

 6     chiefs of sectors in the MP administration.  That is to say, the people

 7     from the profession.

 8        Q.   Okay.

 9             THE INTERPRETER:  Interpreter's correction, not the MOD, but the

10     Ministry of Interior, in the first line of the -- in the answer.

11             MR. MISETIC:  Okay.

12        Q.   Now, let me turn your attention to another document.

13             MR. MISETIC:  And this, Mr. Registrar, is 65 ter 5803, please.

14        Q.   These are the working minutes of a briefing that was held in

15     Split by MP unit commanders on the 7th of September, although the minutes

16     were formally completed on the 22nd of September which is why that date

17     is in the upper left-hand corner.  But if you look at the introduction,

18     it says there was a briefing by the MP unit commanders regarding the work

19     of the military police during the months of July and August, which was

20     held on 7 September 1995 in Split.

21             I checked in your notes for that day, Mr. Lausic, and it appears

22     that, in fact, in your notes you also reflect that you were present at

23     this meeting.  Do you recall that?

24             MR. TIEGER:  Sorry.  Just a small correction.  Mr. Misetic said

25     working minutes, I think he meant minutes from the working meeting.

Page 15478

 1             MR. MISETIC:  Yes, sorry, a slip of the tongue.  I'll try not to

 2     pull a Kehoe again, Mr. President.  Thank you.

 3             JUDGE ORIE:  Please proceed.

 4             MR. MISETIC:  If we turn the page, Mr. Lausic, I'll have the

 5     Registrar turn the page in both English and Croatian.

 6        Q.   It says as you can see:  "The following persons attended," and

 7     you are at number one.  Do you recall the meeting?

 8        A.   Yes, I do, and I can also find it in my diary.  It started at

 9     9.00.

10        Q.   Also present, and we can scroll through here, is your deputy

11     chief, Mr. Biskic.  At number 4, Major Juric.  At number 5,

12     Captain Eljuga, acting chief of the criminal military police.

13             If we can turn the page in English, please.

14             At number 15, Colonel Mihael Budimir, commander of the 72nd MP

15     Battalion, is present.  And then the minutes reflect that you held the

16     introduction.

17             MR. MISETIC:  If we can turn the page in Croatian, please.

18        Q.   You said on behalf of the military police administration, and

19     then your personal name, congratulate the military police unit commanders

20     on completion of all tasks which were assigned to them as part of the

21     Operation Oluja.

22             And then the minutes reflect at the bottom of the English page

23     that the first thing discussed was the preparations for a sports games.

24     Do you recall the military police in early September was involved in

25     providing security for a sporting event?

Page 15479

 1             I'm sorry, I didn't hear your answer.  Yes?

 2        A.   Starting with 1992, every year, one MP unit organised sport games

 3     for the armed forces in the Republic of Croatia.  There were sport games

 4     for MP units.

 5             In 1995, the fourth military police sports games were organised

 6     by the 72nd MP Battalion.  The games were held in Split.

 7        Q.   Now after that discussion there is the -- the reports from each

 8     battalion commander were provided about what they had done in July and

 9     August as well as assessments by the military police administration

10     officers about the work of that particular battalion.  And so I'd like to

11     call your attention to the report and assessment of the 72nd.

12             MR. MISETIC:  And if I could turn the page, this is numbered page

13     15 at the bottom, which should be the same in the e-court.  Right?  And

14     page 11 in the original.

15        Q.   Now, if we scroll to the bottom in English, he started off

16     talking about the participation of the 72nd Battalion in Operation

17     Ljeto 95 or Summer 95.  And the work of the anti-terrorist company.  And

18     then in the third paragraph -- or second paragraph from the bottom in

19     Croatian and the last paragraph in the English, he reported at this

20     meeting 250 men took part in the combat activities during the Operation

21     Oluja.  It is being noted that there were instances of setting fires to

22     houses in the area of" --

23             MR. MISETIC:  If we could turn the page.

24        Q.    "... responsibility of the 72nd Military Police Battalion.

25     However, after the initial four to five days, all such occurrences were

Page 15480

 1     prevented."

 2             And then in the last paragraph of his briefing, he says:

 3             "As far as the cooperation with other police administrations is

 4     concerned, there were some problems in this area, but these problems

 5     should be solved after the meeting with Split-Dalmatia police

 6     administration chief."

 7             MR. MISETIC:  Now, if we can scroll down in the English.

 8        Q.   Now this is where the administration officers assess -- provide

 9     their assessment of the work of the 72nd.  And Major Juric says:

10             "There are no objections to the report itself, nor are there any

11     objections to the work of the traffic military police.  The unit has

12     accepted the new system of reporting, both in terms of monthly and daily

13     reports."

14             MR. MISETIC:  If we could turn the page in English, please.

15        Q.   He says, He, himself, was present in the area of responsibility

16     of the 72nd Battalion at the time.  It is his opinion that all services

17     OVP, PVP, and criminal military police carried out their taskings

18     successfully and very professionally and that all of them deserved to be

19     commended.  Captain Grancaric and Captain Mrkota were commended.

20             The next entry is by Captain Eljuga, the acting chief of the

21     crime police in the administration, with regards to the work of the

22     criminal military police:

23             "There are no objections.  All tasks were completed on time and

24     with high degree of quality.  The monthly report is good and encompasses

25     all the areas.  There is, however, a single observation; namely, in one

Page 15481

 1     of the tables, the number of criminal charges is 29, while in another,

 2     the number is 22, which creates some confusion.  However, this can be

 3     easily resolved by a phone call."

 4             Now, if we can go to page 18 in the English for the assessment

 5     provided by your deputy, Deputy Chief Mr. Biskic.

 6             MR. MISETIC:  Which I think is the next page in Croatian.

 7        Q.    "In relation to the overview of the public law and order

 8     violations, security, military traffic, and crime, every unit in its zone

 9     of responsibility must precisely state from which HV unit comes a person

10     involved in a traffic accident, JRM violation or a criminal act.  This is

11     because of the fact that, so far, certain mistakes have been occurring.

12     Namely, an overview of a situation in a zone of responsibility would be

13     presented and attributed accordingly to a Military District, whereas a

14     large number of HV members who reported themselves" --

15             MR. MISETIC:  And, Your Honour, I think that is probably not the

16     best translation.

17        Q.   But:  "... who reported themselves as perpetrators of certain

18     actions do's not belong to the said Military District."

19             Now, Mr. Lausic, you're present at the meeting based on the

20     reports of Mr. Budimir as well as the assessments provided by the various

21     department chiefs of the military police administration.  Did you agree

22     with the assessments of the status and state of events in the zone of

23     responsibility of the 72nd Military Police Battalion?

24        A.   As any other minutes, these minutes merely note the words spoken

25     by the rapporteur.  I wouldn't be able to tell you if I agree or disagree

Page 15482

 1     on the basis of the text here.  I can't merely reduce it down to a

 2     discussion noted down by the note keeper 14 years later.  This isn't a

 3     round table.  It is after all a hearing of a witness before the ICTY.  I

 4     can't only comment on the minutes.  Whoever had something to say, put

 5     forth their opinion.  It was taken down in the minutes, and the minutes

 6     were delivered to all participants in the meeting.  You have my view

 7     expressed as contained in the minutes.

 8        Q.   Well, I'm going to assume that the minute taker, if the chief of

 9     the military police administration criticised the persons and their

10     reports as being inaccurate, would have recorded that in the minutes of

11     the meeting.  Wouldn't you agree?

12        A.   As you can see, the various interventions were noted down but not

13     in the form of a stenogram or a transcript.

14        Q.   Mr. Lausic, let me ask one final question on this point.  You

15     attended enough meetings; you have seen enough minutes of meetings; you

16     have a general understanding of what would or wouldn't be in the minutes

17     of a meeting.  If you criticised the assessments of Mr. Budimir,

18     Mr. Eljuga, Mr. Juric, Mr. Biskic, those criticisms would certainly have

19     been in the minutes that were put together.  Correct?

20        A.   Mr. Misetic, two days ago I said that I am hesitant to answer

21     hypothetical questions:  What would happen if this and that were

22     happening?  We have the minutes.  The minutes contain the words spoken by

23     the participants.  You have my introductory word there.  There are no

24     comments or opinions expressed -- or, rather, formulated in the minutes.

25     Fourteen years later it is very difficult for me to make any sort of

Page 15483

 1     comments in relation to the minutes.  At some -- at times the minutes

 2     would have the form that they have now.  At other times they would be in

 3     the form of a transcript where you would be able to get an idea of what

 4     the comments were like.  The minute-taker, the note-taker taking these

 5     particular minutes was not a professional.  It was a secretary, an

 6     administrative secretary, who did the best she could under the

 7     circumstances.

 8             MR. MISETIC:  Mr. President, I'd like to tender 65 ter 5803 into

 9     evidence, please.

10             MR. TIEGER:  No objection, Your Honour.

11             JUDGE ORIE:  Mr. Registrar.

12             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, that becomes Exhibit D1286.

13             JUDGE ORIE:  And is admitted into evidence.

14             MR. MISETIC:  Mr. Registrar, if I could please have

15     Exhibit P2166.

16        Q.   Mr. Lausic, I'd like to take you to your diary of the 13th of

17     September.

18             MR. MISETIC:  Mr. Registrar, this is at page 65 in the English

19     and page 59 in the B/C/S.  If we can go down to Mr. Moric's section.

20        Q.   Mr. Lausic, you'll recall that you were asked questions by

21     Mr. Tieger about this and then extensively by the Presiding Judge about

22     this entry, and I'd now like to take you back.

23             And while you can't remember what was said at the 7th of

24     September meeting in Split, you did provide some interpretations of

25     Mr. Moric's thoughts on the 13th of September.

Page 15484

 1             And now let's take a look at -- again, what Mr. Moric said.  If

 2     we go to the fourth point he says:

 3             "The line of command is not operational.  Since on the level of

 4     the Military Districts, they believe that they are either misinformed or

 5     that things are misrepresented or misinterpreted.  We must make sure

 6     military commanders know the truth."

 7             Now, I'd like to take you to the transcript of your questions and

 8     answers by Judge Orie.  That question and answer session begins at page

 9     15324, beginning at line 17.  I'd like to take you a question by

10     Judge Orie that begins at 15325 at line 18.  Judge Orie asked you:

11             "Now Mr. Moric said that the Military District level believed

12     that they were misinformed or that things were misinterpreted.  Did you

13     form an opinion about that as well, whether it was misinformation or --

14     so not knowing what was actually happening, or was it not wanting to know

15     what was actually happening?  Or did you form an opinion about an

16     explanation as to the attitude of the Military District level?"

17             Your answer was:

18             "I personally believe then, as I do now, that commanders at all

19     levels, via the daily and interim reports they received from the military

20     police as well as from their subordinate commanders, did have an

21     opportunity to acquaint themselves with the situation in their respective

22     areas."

23             Then later, at page 15327, beginning at line 16, Judge Orie asks:

24             "And where Moric said that military commanders must know the

25     truth, did you form any opinion as to whether they knew the truth but

Page 15485

 1     didn't want to know it?  Or that they really did not know the truth and

 2     should be informed about what happened?"

 3             Your answer:

 4             "The same comment would apply to this situation as I said a

 5     moment ago.  The commanders received reports from MP units from their

 6     subordinate officers as well as their assistant commanders in charge of

 7     security.  And by virtue of those, they had insight into the situation of

 8     their respective areas."

 9             Mr. Moric -- Mr. Lausic, you have seen from the minutes on the

10     7th of September that what the military police was reporting, in fact,

11     was that there was some burning in the first four to five days in the

12     area of responsibility of the 72nd, but that now everything was under

13     control.  Right?

14        A.   That's right.  That's what Commander Budimir said in his

15     contribution to the discussion, and I can only confirm that these words

16     can be found in the minutes.

17        Q.   So, therefore, if your answer, at least in part was based on what

18     the military police was reporting to commanders, the military commanders

19     could have concluded that, in fact, if the military police was saying

20     that things were under control, that meant that things were under

21     control.  Right?

22        A.   It would be -- I would be hard-pressed to be expected to know

23     what the assistant commander thought and what sort of opinions he

24     formulated on the basis of the reports he received from the commanders in

25     the field.  I did not receive any sort of queries or requests for any

Page 15486

 1     answers or for clarification of certain issues from any Military District

 2     Commanders throughout the country.  That's why it is very difficult for

 3     me to tell you what sort of a conclusion a Military District Commander

 4     could have arrived at based on the reports he received from a battalion

 5     commander of a battalion that was subordinate to him.

 6        Q.   Well, you were receiving reports obviously.  We've seen the

 7     reporting you were receiving personally on the 7th.  Your conclusion was

 8     that things were under control in the 72nd Military Police Battalion on

 9     the 7th of September.  Correct?  Otherwise you would have issued some

10     order on the 7th or taken some measure.

11        A.   Again, you've put a hypothetical question to me.  We've got facts

12     in front of us.  The fact is that the meeting was held.  The fact is that

13     minutes were made of the commanders' interventions made at the meetings.

14     So what sort of a question am I supposed to answer now?

15        Q.   Well, let me give you another question, and you said you don't

16     know how you can answer what the Military District Commander may have

17     been thinking.  But in your answers to the Presiding Judge about what

18     Mr. Moric may have been thinking, you did provide some answers.  And I'm

19     asking you now to look again at Mr. Moric's words, in light of the

20     reporting that the military police was doing, in light of the assessments

21     of the military police on the 7th of September, I'm putting it to you

22     that Mr. Moric was telling you that you were -- and in the military

23     police were misreporting the situation, and that's why he says, We must

24     make sure military commanders must know the truth.

25             Do you agree with me?

Page 15487

 1        A.   No.  In my diary, there is only one indication of this, a very

 2     brief one, concerning what minister Moric had to say.  The chain of

 3     command is not operational because at the level of the Military District,

 4     they believe that they are being misinformed or that something is being

 5     misrepresented or misinterpreted.  We have to make sure that the

 6     commanders know the truth.  Now, what was the opinion on the part of

 7     Minister Moric that is expressed here?  Who is it that is misinforming,

 8     misrepresenting, or misinterpreting something?  I don't have a note to

 9     that effect in my diary, and I can't tell what you it was.

10     Ministry Moric who was also witness who was heard, and perhaps is the one

11     who can answer your question.

12        Q.   Thank you, Mr. Lausic.

13             MR. MISETIC:  If we can turn to, Mr. Registrar, 65 ter 2451,

14     please.

15        Q.   This is from the 12th of September, Mr. Lausic.  It is an order

16     again.  It's issued to all the military police battalions.  And when we

17     get to the back, you'll see that it's issued -- there we go.  It's copied

18     to the chiefs of the sections of the military police administration.

19             Now -- actually, I apologise.  This is not an order.  First

20     you're forwarding something to them, and then there's an order, and we'll

21     get to that order next.

22             But you are forwarding to the MP battalions the analysis of state

23     security -- of the state of security and cooperations between the police

24     and the military police between 22 August and 31 August.  And you say:

25             "Please find attached the analysis of the reports submitted by

Page 15488

 1     the police administrations referring to setting houses on fire, removal

 2     of other people's items, cooperation with the military police, and

 3     measures taken in that respect.

 4             "The above mentioned analysis is to be closely studied and joint

 5     actions should be discussed and measures set out at coordination

 6     meetings, in order to make the cooperation more effective and raise the

 7     security in general on a higher level."

 8             And then the analysis from each of the police administrations is

 9     attached.

10             MR. MISETIC:  If we go to the last page or second to last page,

11     which is page eight in the English.  Page 7 in the original.

12        Q.   You have some statistics.  A survey of criminal acts per police

13     administration.  For that week, for example, in Knin you have 24 arsons,

14     no explosions, no removal of movables.  The police administration

15     Zadar-Knin, 47 arsons, 8 removal of movables.  And then a survey of

16     on-site investigation and structure of perpetrators.  For Zadar-Knin, 55

17     on-site investigations, 9 HV members identified as the perpetrates.

18     Sibenik, 48 investigations, 8 HV members.  Split-Dalmatia,

19     1 investigation, 5 HV members.  And I'll ask you a question after I show

20     you the nest document.

21             MR. MISETIC:  But, Mr. President, if I could tender 65 ter 2451,

22     please.

23             MR. TIEGER:  It's an item on the bar table, Your Honours, so I

24     presume there is no objection.

25             MR. MISETIC:  No objection.

Page 15489

 1             JUDGE ORIE:  Mr. Registrar.

 2             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, this is document shall be given

 3     Exhibit D1287.

 4             MR. TIEGER:  Sorry.  It's on the bar table.

 5             JUDGE ORIE:  It's on the bar table, then I misunderstood you.

 6             THE REGISTRAR:  Correction for the transcript.  This document

 7     shall not be given Exhibit D1287.

 8             Thank you, Your Honours.

 9             JUDGE ORIE:  The number is vacated.

10             Please proceed.

11             MR. MISETIC:  Now, if we could, Mr. Registrar, have 65 ter 2482,

12     please.  That's 65 ter 2482.

13             I'm sorry, Mr. Registrar, it's 65 ter 2842.

14        Q.   This is your order of the 12th of September, following that

15     correspondence from the MUP.  And in the preamble you begin write:

16             "Having analysed the work of the MP units mostly in the newly

17     liberated areas ... we came to the conclusion that the check-points on

18     the entrances to the newly liberated areas are not efficient, that the

19     military police motorised units were not assigned to the specific tasks

20     or patrol areas," and then you issue an order.

21             In point 1 you revoke the order of the 14th of August, which

22     establishes check-points at the entrance and exit from the newly

23     liberated areas.  And you instruct the military police to advise or

24     inform the heads of the police administrations and the police units about

25     removing the check-points.  You institute a new system of patrolling in

Page 15490

 1     point 2.

 2             MR. MISETIC:  If we could turn the page.

 3        Q.   The report in point 3 is:  "The report" -- I'm sorry.  Finishing

 4     in point 2:

 5             "The entire area of responsibility should be covered by

 6     patrolling areas.  Timely interventions as requested by MUP check-points

 7     shall be secured through uninterrupted radio contact with the MUP patrols

 8     and through visits to the MUP check-points."

 9             And then ask you for a report to be submitted to you about patrol

10     strength and structure, equipment, code-names.

11             MR. MISETIC:  Turn the page.

12        Q.   The working radio channel of the patrols, and that the report

13     should be submitted by 1200 hours on the 16th of September.  And if you

14     see who you copied on this, it's the military police administration

15     departments, the military police administration sections, and Mr. Moric.

16             Now, again, this is at a time after your discussions with

17     Mr. Moric as reflected in your diary.  You used your authority under

18     Article 8 of the rules to take measures and give instructions to the

19     military police for more effective use of the military police on the

20     ground.  Correct?

21        A.   Correct.  A new method of proceeding, in order to be more

22     efficient in our cooperation with the colleagues from the Ministry of

23     Interior because as we were able to see from this analysis that was

24     received from the -- for the period between the period between the 22nd

25     and 31st August, the situation was not good and, we, together with our

Page 15491

 1     colleagues from the MUP, tried to find out the ways that would be best to

 2     counter these incidents.

 3             Item 4 of this order, which you didn't read, stated that the

 4     regular and traffic military police department officers and department

 5     chiefs would be in charge of controlling and implementing the order.

 6        Q.   Thank you, Mr. Lausic.

 7             MR. MISETIC:  Mr. President, again, unless it's on the bar table,

 8     I tender 65 ter 2842.

 9             MR. TIEGER:  Not on the bar table.  No objection.

10             JUDGE ORIE:  Mr. Registrar, this document would receive ...

11             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, this document shall receive

12     Exhibit D1287.  Thank you, Your Honours.

13             JUDGE ORIE:  D1287 is admitted into evidence.

14             Perhaps, Mr. Lausic, could you tells what NUVP means.  In the

15     translation that isn't -- the interpreters did not know what it stands

16     for.

17             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Chief of the administration of the

18     military police.

19             JUDGE ORIE:  Thank you.

20             Please proceed.

21             MR. MISETIC:  Thank you, Mr. President.

22        Q.   Now, Mr. Lausic, I'd like to take you back to Exhibit D567, which

23     is your 16 September report to General Cervenko.

24             And this is your analysis of the use of the military police of

25     the armed forces of the Republic of Croatia in Operation Storm on the

Page 15492

 1     16th of September.

 2             MR. MISETIC:  And if we could go to page 8 in the English, which

 3     is numbered paragraph 6.3.

 4        Q.   And again you write:

 5             "In larger villages and towns, and along major roads, constant

 6     beat patrols ensured law and order, prevented torching and the

 7     uncontrolled removal of war booty, and controlled the safety of military

 8     road traffic."

 9             Would you agree that that assessment was consistent with the

10     assessments that were provided in the meeting in Split on the 7th of

11     September about the situation in the zone of the 72nd Military Police

12     Battalion?

13        A.   You mean the one that the commander of the 72nd Battalion

14     referred to when he was speaking or ... or are you referring to what I

15     referred to in the introduction to the meeting?

16        Q.   I'm referring to the assessment by the commander of the 72nd

17     Military Police Battalion as well as the administration officers who

18     provided their own assessments of the situation in the 72nd Military

19     Police Battalion.

20             JUDGE ORIE:  I do not know who or what is producing some

21     additional --

22             MR. MIKULICIC:  I did, Your Honour, I'm sorry.  I just

23     accidentally pushed the wrong button.

24             JUDGE ORIE:  Yes.  Never do that, Mr. Mikulicic.

25             MR. MIKULICIC:  I wouldn't.

Page 15493

 1             JUDGE ORIE:  Please proceed.

 2             MR. MISETIC:

 3        Q.   Mr. Lausic, did you understand my question?

 4        A.   I must confess, not fully.  This is my report, and you want me to

 5     put that in relation with -- or to somebody's briefing?

 6        Q.   Let me say that your report is based on the reports of and the

 7     assessments provided to you by all of your subordinates.  Correct?

 8        A.   This report was drafted pursuant to the reports received from the

 9     specialties departments of the MP administration.  And this is my summary

10     reports that I submitted to the addressees that can you see.  The way in

11     which the chiefs of specialised departments of the MP administration

12     received information is, I suppose, through the professional services,

13     along the chain of reporting.  Therefore, I can only comment the part

14     that I signed and which is basically my report, and I can verify it as

15     such.

16        Q.   Well, let me just ask you, then, the more general question.

17             You reported this to General Cervenko, and I assume that you

18     still believe that the military police beat patrols ensured law and

19     order, prevented torching and the uncontrolled removal of war booty, and

20     controlled the safety of military road traffic.

21             Was that an accurate assessment at that time you wrote this in

22     September 1995?

23        A.   In item 6.3, the task is not referred to as completed but

24     something that is ongoing.  This is not in past tense.  It is in the

25     present tense, and the exact wording is that in larger settlements and

Page 15494

 1     cities and along the roads, beat and patrol service is ensured on a

 2     constant basis to establish law and order.  And this is referred to a

 3     process -- this refers to a process which had not been completed by that

 4     time.

 5        Q.   Well, but, Mr. Lausic, the point of the report is, in fact, to

 6     provide an assessment looking back from the beginning of Operation Storm

 7     and how Operation Storm and afterwards were conducted, right, that's the

 8     point of why you're preparing a report titled "analysis of the use of the

 9     military police in Operation Storm"?

10        A.   That is correct.  On page 1, just below where it says "Minister

11     of Defence and chief of the Main Staff," as well as the subject which is

12     "analysis of work of the military police," a reference is made.  I stated

13     what the analysis of mine was based on.  That was based on the order of

14     the chief of the Main Staff of the 8th of September, 1995, ordering that

15     such anlayses be provided, in order for a final analysis to be conducted

16     at the level of the Main Staff.  I believe it was subsequently done.

17             This was supposed to be material for that analysis that was to be

18     conducted at the level of the ministry and the staff on Operation Storm.

19     I believe it was done towards the end of September.  I probably have that

20     in my notes, and I was probably present at such a meeting.

21        Q.   Okay.  Well, just generally speaking then.  Let me put it a

22     different way.  If there was a problem and the military police had been

23     unable to ensure law and order in the liberated territories from the 4th

24     of August to the 16th of September, you would have put that in this

25     report somewhere.  Correct?

Page 15495

 1        A.   Mr. Misetic, again you are putting questions which -- well, I

 2     won't call them hypothetical.  But we are -- we should stick to the

 3     facts.  We have this report.  I signed it and sent it on.  There are

 4     stipulations contained therein which I can confirm as mine, and I had

 5     verified them.  Had some other circumstances prevailed, other things

 6     would have been mentioned, but we have what we have.  I confirm that this

 7     is my report sent to the addressees mentioned in the course of

 8     preparation for an analysis to be conducted at the level of the ministry

 9     and the Main Staff.  Fourteen years down the road, I no longer remember

10     whether I wanted to add something but did not, or whether I skipped

11     something.  This is the only copy we have.  I no longer have my working

12     copies, and this report stands as a fact, full stop.

13        Q.   I understand.  What I'm basically interested in knowing is your

14     position on the following question:

15             In this document, your conclusion was that the military police

16     was able to maintain law and order.

17        A.   The only thing we can find in the document is that the military

18     police was performing those tasks.

19        Q.   Okay.  Mr. Lausic, let me turn your attention then to --

20             JUDGE ORIE:  Could I ask a few clarifying questions here,

21     Mr. Lausic.

22             We've seen this meeting where Mr. Budimir reports that, apart

23     from the first four or five days, that incidents of -- of torching did

24     not occur after that.  That would bring us somewhere to 10th of August,

25     approximately.

Page 15496

 1             Of course, this Chamber has received quite a bit of evidence, and

 2     to say that no arson or torching was ever in this evidence after the 10th

 3     of August would, I think would not be correct.

 4             Now, Mr. Budimir says everything under control in the area of

 5     responsibility of the 72nd Military Police Battalion.  In your report

 6     here, you use different language.  You say:

 7             "In larger villages and towns and along major roads, constant

 8     beat patrols ensured law and order."

 9             Now you can look at it in two different ways.  Fine, everything

10     is under control, more or less in line with what Mr. Budimir said.  You

11     also could read it that, although matters may be under control in larger

12     villages and towns and along major roads, that the same might not be true

13     in smaller villages and on the minor roads.

14             I'm trying to interpret your words here.  Do I have to read in

15     6.3 everything is fine; or should I also read in 6.3, Well, we exercise

16     control in major villages and towns, but we have to limit it to that

17     because the same is not true for smaller villages and for roads not

18     mentioned here.

19             Could you clarify.

20             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The term used, "in larger

21     settlements and cities and along roads," should include the areas of our

22     activity.  As to whether the beat patrol services went to remote villages

23     or hamlets is something I cannot tell you.  I have to remind you, though,

24     that the area was extensively mined and our movements had to be limited

25     to the areas which were safe for traffic.  That is probably why I used

Page 15497

 1     the terminology "in larger settlements along roads," et cetera,

 2     et cetera.  This was a newly liberated area contaminated with mines and

 3     explosives, unsafe for movement --

 4             JUDGE ORIE:  I stop you there.  I do understand that due to the

 5     situation with mines that you might not have been able to go everywhere.

 6     Nevertheless, one of the by-products of arson and torching is smoke.  So

 7     even if you don't come that close, you can observe sometimes that you see

 8     smoke at a distance and, of course, could be a haystack that went on

 9     fire.  But sometimes you have indications.

10             Now what I would like it know:  Did you have any indications at

11     that time as whether or not the areas you didn't come closer that

12     torching and arson may well have occurred, or at least that fires

13     occurred where you couldn't come close enough to establish whether it was

14     arson or whether it was fire by other causes.

15             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.  In the reports I received

16     daily from the duty service, such events were recorded, to the effect

17     that patrols noticed smoke drills but that they were unable to access the

18     area in order to establish what the situation was.  One of the most

19     common reasons was that patrols stipulated that the areas were dangerous

20     because of the mines and minefields present there.  Sometimes in the

21     reports one would find sentences to the effect that patrols, in the

22     course of the night, noticed fires.  But given the fact that they did not

23     have vehicles, they could not go to investigate.  Frequently they also

24     lacked means of communication to be able to report that to a superior

25     level.  In a number of circumstances, also the human factor, that is

Page 15498

 1     fear, caused the lack of activity, in order to go and try to establish

 2     what was going on.

 3             JUDGE ORIE:  I'm asking you this because in this report and, for

 4     example, in paragraph 6.3, it's very positively phrased, Look at what we

 5     do.  Or, Look at what we've done.  Whereas now you say, Well, the job

 6     hadn't finished yet; the report is not only looking back.  And also, from

 7     what you tell us now, the situation was not to be interpreted as

 8     positively as perhaps the language here suggests.

 9             Is that a fair interpretation of this type of reporting?

10             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] After the events that were recorded

11     in the course of the first few days, by the point when this draft --

12     report was drafted, things were being brought under control and

13     improving.  The security situation was being improved from one day to the

14     next.

15             This report also has that overtone, in the sense that we were

16     doing our best to improve the situation, which has been -- had been

17     improved by that point already.  However, one cannot be completely

18     satisfied as a policeman, ever.

19             JUDGE ORIE:  But if Mr. Budimir reports that after the first

20     four, five days, similar occurrences could be prevented, I do understand

21     that you would not share that optimistic view that such things didn't

22     occur anymore after the first four or five days, although you said the

23     situation improved.

24             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. President, this report covers

25     the entire 8.000 square kilometres of the newly liberated area, with all

Page 15499

 1     of the characteristics which prevailed and which can be seen from the

 2     analysis we received from our colleagues from the Ministry of the

 3     Interior.

 4             The report mentions the various police administrations in which

 5     the situation differed.  If we look at the statistics on arson,

 6     explosions, scene of crime investigations, and the structure of

 7     perpetrators, we have all that data there.  By virtue of my analysis, I

 8     tried to unify all of the information to cover the entire newly liberated

 9     area.

10             JUDGE ORIE:  [Previous translation continues] ... a rather long

11     question, and even if Mr. Budimir may have limited him to the area of

12     responsibility for the 72nd Military Police Battalion, I do understand

13     from your answers that you certainly, for the whole of the activities of

14     the military police covered by this report, that you wouldn't confirm

15     then nothing happened anymore after the first four or five days.  Is that

16     correct?

17             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Correct, Mr. President.

18             JUDGE ORIE:  Please proceed, Mr. Misetic.

19             MR. MISETIC:  Thank you, Mr. President.

20        Q.   Actually, I think -- concerning this document, let me just take

21     you to the proposals which are on page 10.  Although you have now stated

22     that by this time the situation was in fact improving and had improved by

23     that point already.

24             MR. MISETIC:  Page 9 in the original, I believe.

25        Q.   Your first recommendation is about having meetings with

Page 15500

 1     commanders with the Ministry of Interior, et cetera.  And you have

 2     testified that -- actually it says, "which would be held in the coming

 3     period," but there was a proposal that you made for purposes of

 4     coordination.  Is that correct?

 5        A.   Yes, it is, Mr. Misetic.

 6        Q.   And is this proposal similar to the proposal that you made -- or,

 7     I'm sorry, order that you made on the 18th of August where you wanted

 8     your military policemen to get the telephone numbers of commanders.  You

 9     said it was for the purpose of knowing where units might be and having

10     better information about movements.  Was that the purpose of having

11     commanders attend these meetings?

12        A.   No, Mr. Misetic.  In this proposal, it is proposed that the most

13     senior commander; that is to say, the Military District Commander, as

14     well as an officer of the SIS and an officer from political affairs, at

15     the highest level, should meet with the assistant ministers; that is to

16     say, Mr. Moric, and Mr. Benko, in all districts of the -- of the Croatian

17     army covering the area -- newly liberated area in its entirety in order

18     to take on responsibility for the behaviour of HV members as well as to

19     use the chain of command to supervise the movement of those members.  I

20     believe two days ago that I told you that, as far as I know, such

21     meetings were not held.

22        Q.   Okay.  Now, in your witness statement at paragraph 251, which is

23     at page 52 in the English version.

24             MR. MISETIC:  And that is Exhibit P2159.

25        Q.   You -- in the -- in the middle of that paragraph you say:

Page 15501

 1             "During the course of Operation Storm and its aftermath, I had no

 2     contact with General Gotovina about any crimes or problems with the

 3     military.  I have never had any conversation with General Gotovina about

 4     problems that occurred after the operation."

 5        A.   Could you please tell me again what the number of the

 6     paragraph in the statement is.

 7        Q.   Paragraph 251.  And, again, it's in the -- beginning around the

 8     middle of the paragraph.

 9             Can you find it, Mr. Lausic?

10        A.   Yes, I did.

11        Q.   It's also on the screen.

12        A.   It's easier for me to read it in my copy.

13        Q.   Was that statement true?

14        A.   I would have to refer to the stenogram, the transcript of my

15     suspect interview.  Perhaps this is just a brief form of the same, but I

16     see nothing that would be in dispute.

17        Q.   Okay.  Now --

18        A.   As far as I recall, the investigator's question was whether I

19     visited the area of the Split Military District and Knin specifically,

20     and I think this was my answer, that I did not go to that area but to

21     some other area.

22        Q.   Now we've seen many documents that you are, for example, issuing

23     orders and sending directly copies to the Split Military District

24     command.  If necessary, I can show you other documents -- and I'm sure

25     you probably have recollection that there would, on occasion, be direct

Page 15502

 1     communication between you and General Gotovina about, for example, the

 2     use of the anti-terrorist platoon.  Do you recall that General Gotovina

 3     would approach you about being able to use the anti-terrorist platoon and

 4     asking that it be subordinated to him?  For example, in your diary, I

 5     believe in April 29, you can see an entry where General Gotovina's

 6     request was approved?

 7        A.   The 29th of April?

 8        Q.   Yes.

 9        A.   That was before Operation Storm.

10        Q.   Let me not confuse you.  In the course of your career and

11     General Gotovina's career, you had direct communications with each other

12     when necessary.  Correct?

13        A.   When we came across each other, be it officially or unofficially

14     or by chance or as agreed upon.

15        Q.   But you could also have direct correspondence with each other if

16     it was necessary?

17        A.   Correct.

18        Q.   Now, my question to you is:  If you felt there was a problem in

19     the line of command of General Gotovina concerning criminality, and you

20     felt that he could do something about it -- let me ask the preliminary

21     question.

22             Did you feel that there was a problem in the line of command of

23     General Gotovina?

24        A.   No more or less compared to all other Military District

25     Commanders.  In other areas, we had identical situations basically,

Page 15503

 1     judging by the daily reports as we did in his area.

 2        Q.   Okay.  If there was something specific that needed to be

 3     addressed by General Gotovina that was urgent, you would have and could

 4     have written to him directly and proposed some specific measure.

 5     Correct?

 6        A.   If I had received a notification from my battalion commander and

 7     when the forward command post of the MP administration headed by

 8     Major Juric was still in existence, pointing to the fact that there were

 9     problems in the area of responsibility of a given Military District

10     Commander, for example, that he rejected our proposals or behaved of his

11     own free accord, then I would have done something but through the

12     Main Staff, or at least with them being informed.

13        Q.   Did you ever receive a note official from the battalion commander

14     or Major Juric about General Gotovina rejecting your proposals or

15     behaving of his own free accord?

16        A.   I had no such reports.

17             MR. MISETIC:  Mr. President, this might be a good time for a

18     break.

19             JUDGE ORIE:  Yes, could I ask one clarifying question before we

20     go to the break.

21             We have dealt with -- Mr. Misetic has dealt with your notes about

22     this meeting where Mr. Moric and -- where you write down that Mr. Moric

23     said that they should know the truth, and you said, Well, I formed an

24     opinion about it as well.  So apparently whether misreporting or for

25     whatever other reason, you were both were concerned about the military

Page 15504

 1     command structure not knowing the truth.

 2             Did you ever consider to communicate with Mr. Gotovina or anyone

 3     in his line of command to say, Whether you misunderstand our reports or

 4     whatever it may be, but please be aware this and this is the case.

 5             I think that Mr. Misetic is asking whether such direct

 6     communications whether they ever were there and whether you have ever

 7     considered.  Because apparently from what I read, that was of great

 8     concern to you, to you both.

 9             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. President, my point of contact

10     was the chief of the Main Staff of the armed forces, assistant minister

11     for security, and the minister of defence.  Had it been mentioned in the

12     report of Major Juric or from the commander of the 72nd Battalion that

13     the Military District Commander had from his level resisted such

14     proposals and everything else that would call for the higher level to

15     intervene, of course, I would have, through the chief of the Main Staff,

16     made that contact.

17             JUDGE ORIE:  You would not have directly contacted, if there were

18     any concern in this respect, with Mr. Gotovina.

19             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I always tried to honour the chain

20     of command, i.e., to make sure that the higher level was always aware of

21     the problem before the problem itself reached the level which would have

22     been duty-bound to report on that problem.  That was what I always tried

23     to observe in the reporting system.

24             JUDGE ORIE:  Thank you for that answer.

25             We'll have a break and resume at 11.00.

Page 15505

 1                           --- Recess taken at 10.33 a.m.

 2                           --- On resuming at 11.04 a.m.

 3             JUDGE ORIE:  Before we continue, and perhaps totally superfluous.

 4     Mr. Tieger, the deadline for applications for protective measures, if

 5     needed at all, under in -- in relation to the decision on 92 quater

 6     witnesses, the deadline, today's the last day.

 7             Please proceed, Mr. Misetic.

 8             MR. MISETIC:  Thank you, Mr. President.

 9             If we could go back to D567, please.

10        Q.   While we're getting that up on the screen, Mr. Lausic, I want to

11     give you an opportunity.  The Presiding Judge asked you a question about

12     if -- if there was fire after Operation Storm spotted, for example, in an

13     outlying village and how the military police might react.

14             Could you give us a brief explanation as to the relationship and

15     authorities of the civilian police after Operation Storm, and the

16     military police, as you understood it, after Operation Storm.  What was

17     the job of the civilian police on the liberated territory; and what was

18     the job of the military police?

19        A.   Definitely on the day that Minister Jarnjak publically stated in

20     Knin at a press conference, or at any rate, over the media, that the

21     civilian authority has become operational in the newly liberated area and

22     that all the various civilian structures are functional in the liberated

23     area.  It is also stated that the ministry of the interior was the one

24     that had the competence to maintain public law and order and to prevent

25     all sorts of crime.  It was primarily charged with maintaining a state of

Page 15506

 1     security in the newly liberated area.

 2             However, in view of the fact that there was a large presence of

 3     the HV units in the area at that time, it was only natural that the

 4     military police force would have and maintain a larger presence in the

 5     area.  As one could see in all the documents presented, in all our

 6     contacts, we, as services in charge of the security of the Republic of

 7     Croatia and as part of the security system of the Republic of Croatia,

 8     tried to do the maximum given our human and materiel resources to bring

 9     the security level in Croatia as high up as possible.

10             In answer to your question, or, rather, the question of the

11     Presiding Judge, that a military police patrol may have spotted a fire,

12     well, in that case, had that been the case, they would have and, of

13     course, we have to keep in mind that the area was mined, made sure to

14     check up on what had had happened.  If the patrol in that case caught

15     red-handed either a member -- members of the military police or

16     civilians, it would have been duty-bound to act.  If the police came

17     across civilians committing that crime, they would keep them in custody

18     and notify the civilian police which would have taken over the criminal

19     investigation.

20             If it caught red-handed the HV members, then the military police

21     would carry out its own investigations, notify all the necessary levels

22     and process the case.

23             The same would apply if a civilian police patrol caught either HV

24     members or civilians perpetrating an offence.  They would be duty-bound

25     to take the same steps.  If the perpetrators are soldiers, then they

Page 15507

 1     would notify the military police which would then take its further steps;

 2     and if the perpetrators were civilians, then the civilian police itself

 3     would do its job.

 4        Q.   Thank you for that answer.

 5             MR. MISETIC:  Madam Registrar, if we could go to paragraph 6.3

 6     again.  Page 8 in the English.

 7        Q.   Now, above paragraph 6.3, in your report you note that:

 8             "The anti-terrorist platoon of the 72nd VP Battalion continued

 9     its engagement in combat operations under the direct command of the Split

10     Military District commander and participated in Operation Maestral."

11             This report -- first, you were aware that obviously that the HV

12     was conducting military operations in Bosnia at the time of the writing

13     of this report?

14        A.   Correct.

15        Q.   And you were aware at the time of the writing of this report that

16     it was General Gotovina who was commanding those operations in Bosnia at

17     the time of this report.  Correct?

18        A.   Correct.

19        Q.   Now, if I could take you to your diary, which is P2166, B/C/S

20     page 35, English page 39.  Which is your entry for August 10th.

21             I want to, again, make sure that I understood your testimony

22     before the break correctly.  You never received any information that

23     there was a problem with General Gotovina in the Split Military District.

24     Correct?

25        A.   Do you mean personally from General Gotovina, that I should have

Page 15508

 1     received reports about problems from him?

 2        Q.   What I'm saying is, I think you testified before that neither

 3     from Mr. Budimir or Mr. Juric did you receive any indication that there

 4     was a problem with General Gotovina's command in the Split Military

 5     District.  Correct?

 6        A.   Correct.  Correct.

 7        Q.   Now, just to clarify a matter - and if we can scroll down - and

 8     you were asked about there by Mr. Tieger on direct.

 9             This is on the 10th at 2100, and it was in relation to this

10     incident in Gospic but your -- it says:  "Informed the commander of the

11     Gospic Military District Staff Brigadier Mirko Norac ordered the arrest

12     of a larger group of members of one battalion of the 118th Brigade."

13             And if we could turn the page, please.

14              "Home Guard Regiment who refused to follow orders."

15             And then it says:

16             "Following consultations with the Main Staff of the HV staff

17     Brigadier Mato Obradovic and personally with staff Brigadier Mirko Norac,

18     it was decided not to carry out the arrests, but instead to let the

19     tension die down."

20             Now that's one example of you having a direct communication with

21     a Military District Commander where there was a problem.  Correct?

22        A.   Yes.  But previously, with the person number one of the

23     Main Staff.  The way the Main Staff worked was that the operation centre

24     and the duty officer of the operation centre of the Main Staff would be

25     replacing the chief of the Main Staff during his shift, and he would be

Page 15509

 1     officer number one of the Main Staff at the time.  I may have talked to

 2     the duty officer of the operation centre with the duty officer Staff

 3     Brigadier Obradovic and conveyed to him the information I received from

 4     the commander of the 71st Battalion.  And upon consultations with him, it

 5     was decided that the most appropriate course of action, in view of the

 6     problem that had arisen, that I should make contact with the commander of

 7     the Gospic Military District Brigadier Mirko Norac, and try and resolve

 8     the problem to make sure that the tensions eased and to avoid the use of

 9     measures that might have far-reaching consequences.

10             But let me state again that before talking to the Gospic Military

11     District Commander, I talked to the Main Staff.  And that's what I said

12     earlier on, that the first contact and the main level was that of the

13     Main Staff.

14        Q.   Okay.  Now, first, are you aware that in that period when in your

15     diary you're talking with Mr. Moric, being, let's say, around the 10th of

16     September to the 16th of September, that General Gotovina, at that time,

17     was in Bosnia conducting Operation Maestral?

18        A.   I can't state with any precision if I was aware of the dynamics

19     of the various operations in Bosnia, which were led by General Gotovina

20     and with his participation.  But, of course, I knew that operations were

21     under way, and that the commander of these operations was

22     General Gotovina.  However, I can't pinpoint the exact periods or dates.

23        Q.   Okay.  Now, if there was a problem that required

24     General Gotovina's attention at that time or that he returned from

25     Bosnia, you would have similarly gone to the Main Staff, whether in

Page 15510

 1     writing or orally, and potentially then also tried to talk to

 2     General Gotovina personally if, in fact, you had any information that

 3     there was a problem.  Correct?

 4        A.   It is not necessary for the Military District Commander to be

 5     made contact with.  The Military District Commander has his own command

 6     and deputy.  The Deputy Commander of any level and precisely thus, that a

 7     deputy is supposed to stand in for all the functions that the commander

 8     has, unlike the assistant commander, who is in charge of only one segment

 9     of the areas covered by the commander himself.

10             Therefore, had there been any need for that, which would have

11     been expressed in a report either of the commander of the 72nd Battalion

12     or that of Commander Juric, I would have first contacted the Main Staff

13     and then the command of the Military District.  Whether that would be the

14     commander of the district himself or his deputy or a member of the

15     command, that would depend on the requirements of the particular

16     situation.

17        Q.   To the best of your recollection, do you ever recall there having

18     been that need and you making such a contact with anyone in the Split

19     Military District command?

20        A.   No.

21        Q.   Thank you.

22             MR. MISETIC:  Madam Registrar, if we could have, please, have

23     Exhibit D595.

24        Q.   Now, these are the notes of meeting in Plitvice that was held on

25     the 15th of September, between the representatives of the MUP and the

Page 15511

 1     military police.

 2             MR. MISETIC:  And if we could turn to page 4 to the top.

 3        Q.   This is -- Mr. Budimir was present at this meeting in Plitvice.

 4     And in this meeting with Mr. Moric and the members of the MUP and the

 5     military police here's what, on the 15th of September, Colonel Budimir

 6     said -- is reported to have said that, He called attention to the

 7     spatially large area of responsibility covered by the 72nd --

 8             Mr. Lausic, are you looking for your -- are you looking for your

 9     copy?

10        A.   No.  I'm looking for the notes from my diary because I will be

11     referring to what the minutes have to say on the last page.

12        Q.   Okay.  Well, what Mr. Budimir said was, He called attention to

13     the spatially large area of responsibility covered by the 72nd Military

14     Police Battalion and did not agree with opinions that there was not

15     enough manpower.  The cooperation with the MUP was disturbed but only in

16     some individual cases.  The state of security, public order, and road

17     traffic safety reached the satisfying level.  And with the return of the

18     civilian population in Knin, a problem with disposal of rubbish occurred.

19             MR. MISETIC:  And if we can turn the page in English, please.

20        Q.   First let me ask you this:  Do you recall that that's what

21     Mr. Budimir said at that meeting on the 15th?

22        A.   Yes.  The entry for the 15th of September, in my diary, beneath

23     the headline "Colonel Budimir's intervention, the 72nd Battalion," I have

24     only three entries.  First one, the number of military policemen is

25     sufficient.  So the minutes actually have an inaccurate recording.  For

Page 15512

 1     the area of Knin, 12 criminal reports were filed.  And thirdly, public

 2     law and order and the safety of road traffic are currently satisfactory,

 3     in contrast to the early days in the wake of the liberation.  This is

 4     what my diary says, and some of it is contrary to what the minutes have

 5     to say.

 6        Q.   Okay.

 7             MR. MISETIC:  If we could go to the next page in the English

 8     where it's reported what you said at the meeting.

 9             It says:

10             "General Lausic concluded the reports of the Military Police

11     Units' commanders.  Members of the MUP and the military police are the

12     promotors of the state policy, and the only people responsible for its

13     implement indication are present at this meeting."

14             Now my first question is:  What was the state policy as you

15     understood it?

16        A.   In my view, the state policy was reflected in the order which I

17     received as early as -- at first meeting on the 2nd of August in the war

18     conference room.  This was a meeting with Minister Susak in preparation

19     of Operation Storm which said that the military police must be more

20     energetic in their activity and prevention.

21             The state policy was also mirrored in all the efforts made by us,

22     the military police, and by the Ministry of Interior, which can be seen

23     from all the various documents with a view to preventing and hindering

24     the commission of criminal offences and to process all the perpetrators,

25     regardless of their provenance.

Page 15513

 1             The state policy was also reflected in my proposals which were

 2     contained in my reporting to the higher levels of the Ministry of Defence

 3     and the armed forces, which had to do with the orders issued down the

 4     chain of command, the implementation of which would have -- or would

 5     prevent the commission of criminal offences which were not recorded on

 6     the ground.  And that's what I mean by the state policy.  I also refer to

 7     that same state policy in my final report.

 8             JUDGE ORIE:  Mr. Misetic, may I seek one point of clarification.

 9             You said, Mr. Lausic, that - let me find it - that you had only

10     three entries in your notebook.  And you said, "first one, the number of

11     military policemen is sufficient."

12             And you said:  "So the minutes actually have an inaccurate

13     recording."

14             Now, what I see in the minutes is that Mr. Budimir says that he

15     did he not agree with opinions that there was not enough manpower, which

16     suggests that he said, We have sufficient have men.

17             Now, I have difficulties in understanding that you say this is

18     inaccurate apart from the negative formulation.  But, for me, it comes

19     down to approximately the same, that, well, whoever says that we haven't

20     got enough men, we have.  So I do not see the inaccuracy there, apart

21     from the exact formulation.  But could you explain to me what you meant.

22             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Could you please scroll down the

23     part that Mr. Budimir was talking.

24             JUDGE ORIE:  [Previous translation continues] ... on the top of

25     the page in your language.  And in English it's also the top of the page.

Page 15514

 1             THE INTERPRETER:  Scroll down, the interpreter's correction.

 2             THE WITNESS:  [Interpretation] Mr President, in my diary, the

 3     first comment I have next to what Mr. Budimir had to said was, "the

 4     number of military policemen was sufficient."  That is consistent with

 5     what the commander of the 72nd said and which was noted down by the

 6     note-taker.  That regardless of the fact that the area of responsibility

 7     covered by the 72nd Battalion was extensive and large, he did not agree

 8     with what was being said, that the manpower levels were insufficient.

 9             JUDGE ORIE:  So, therefore, I do not see the inaccuracy in the

10     reporting here because your notes state, although not in exactly the same

11     wording, approximately the same as we find in the notes.

12             This being clarified, please proceed, Mr. Misetic.

13             MR. MISETIC:  Thank you, Mr. President.

14        Q.   Mr. Lausic, I also wanted to ask you about the second portion of

15     that sentence that's ascribed to you, where you said in reference to the

16     state policy:  "The only people responsible for its implementation are

17     present at this meeting."

18             You were referring there to the representatives and officials of

19     the MUP and the officials of the military police.  Correct?

20        A.   Yes, absolutely.

21        Q.   Thank you.

22             MR. MISETIC:  Madam Registrar, if I could have Exhibit P895,

23     please.

24        Q.   Now, we've seen Mr. Budimir's assessments from the 7th of

25     September, going into the 15th of September.  I'd like to show now an

Page 15515

 1     ECMM report of a meeting that was held between General Gotovina and

 2     representatives of the ECMM on the 20th of September.

 3             MR. MISETIC:  And if we could -- there we go.

 4        Q.   And here's what it is reported General Gotovina to have said at

 5     this meeting.

 6             "Asked about the ongoing looting arson and harassment, the

 7     General's opinion is that the police has to control the situation, and

 8     Croatia is still a nation with constitution law and order.  Any person

 9     committing crimes will be charged.  However, a war is always followed by

10     disasters, and now things are under control."

11             Now, you've already talked about this this morning, and you,

12     yourself, said that by the time of your report on the 16th, you felt the

13     situation had improved.  But at the time General Gotovina is said to have

14     made this statement, the assessment from the military police, in fact,

15     was that the situation was now under control.  Correct?

16        A.   That the situation was improving.  I think that that was the

17     answer I gave to Mr. President.

18             MR. MISETIC:  Now, if we could go to Exhibit D978, please.  It's

19     page 9 in the English version, please.  This is not the version I wanted.

20     There it is.

21             If we can go to the paragraph above the section numbered 1.1.4,

22     which I believe is the next page in B/C/S.  There.

23        Q.   Now this is your annual report for 1995 that was issued in

24     January of 1996.  And I'm just going to ask you if you still believe this

25     to be an accurate description.  It says:

Page 15516

 1             "The control and command system at the level of the military

 2     police administration and the daily operations command at the level of

 3     the commanders of the Military Districts, the Croatian navy, Croatian air

 4     force, and anti-aircraft defence functioned perfectly and received the

 5     highest assessment mark in the Flash, Summer 1995, Storm, Maestral, and

 6     Southern Stretch offensive operations ..."

 7        A.   Yes.

 8        Q.   Is that an accurate description of command and control and the

 9     daily operational command functioning perfectly?

10        A.   That assessment mark was assigned during the analysis of

11     Operations Flash and Storm by the commanders reporting on the execution

12     of their respective tasks in the course of the operations.  Also, that

13     was the assessment mark of the MP administration from our level.

14        Q.   If you go to the next paragraph, it says "coordination."  And:

15             "In 1995, commands of military police units compiled work plans

16     in close coordination with commands of the Military Districts, the navy,

17     the air force, and the anti-aircraft defence, garrisons, and other

18     factors influencing the implementation of military police tasks, which

19     enabled effective cooperation in the implementation of tasks, especially

20     during offensive operations of the armed forces of the Republic of

21     Croatia."

22             Can you explain what type of coordination is referred to there.

23        A.   As we can see from the report, in item 1.1.4, "coordination," it

24     is stressed that the commanders -- the commands of MP units drafted their

25     work plans in close cooperation with the commands of the Croatian army

Page 15517

 1     Military Districts, Croatian navy, Croatian air force, garrisons,

 2     et cetera, as well as with other factors influencing the implementation

 3     of military police tasks which enabled effective cooperation in the

 4     implementation of tasks, especially during offensive operations.

 5             In the second paragraph of item 1.1.4, I make note of certain

 6     problems, as regards the coordination of tasks at the level of MP units,

 7     as well as certain sections and departments of Military Districts, the

 8     navy, the air force, and certain administrations of the Main Staff, as

 9     well as certain administrations of the Ministry of Defence, logistics

10     bases, et cetera.  It was happening because of certain individuals which,

11     by that time, had not grasped the structure of the military police, as

12     well as the prescribed chain of reporting and their obligations towards

13     MP units.  I also mentioned that MP units are not part of the

14     Military Districts, navy, the air force.  However, it was still the

15     mobilisation development stage of those factors.

16             In the bolded third passage, we express our desire that in 1996,

17     by way of coordination, it should be ensured that the administrations of

18     the Ministry of Defence, of the Main Staff, as well as chiefs of branches

19     and services in the units of Military Districts, the navy, and the air

20     force, it should be ensured that they implement their supervisory role

21     and provide professional help and expertise in order to contribute to the

22     development and work of certain branches and professions within the units

23     of the military police, rather than to merely ask for the implementation

24     of tasks from the scope of work of the military police.

25             In my discussions with the investigators, I used a figure of

Page 15518

 1     speech, whereas I said that there was such situations at all levels in

 2     which commanders of the HV in their relation to MP units within their

 3     area of responsibility, sometimes they behaved as mothers, sometimes as

 4     step-mothers.  We mentioned something three days ago.  It had to do with

 5     the case involving the commander of the southern theatre, who used -- or,

 6     rather, tried to demobilize a -- a MP unit, which refused his order.  In

 7     order to further corroborate what I'm talking about in item 1.1.5, which

 8     has to do with the supervision of work, in the third bolded passage, I

 9     stress that there was no supervision of the work of MP units from the

10     level of district -- Military District commands, the command of the navy,

11     and the command of the air force, as well as the professional

12     administrations of the Main Staff, and there was no -- there were no

13     inspections carried out by the main inspectorate of the Ministry of

14     Defence.

15             JUDGE ORIE:  Before we continue, the witness now referred to the

16     third bold paragraph of 1.1.4, which does not appear on our screen and is

17     not uploaded in e-court.  We now move to 1.1.5 which is also not

18     uploaded, at least not in translation into e-court.  So I have great

19     difficulties in following the explanation of paragraphs which I can't

20     read in English.

21             MR. MISETIC:  I agree, Mr. President, I was asking him about one

22     portion, and it was a 65 ter exhibit that this translation included, so I

23     guess we will have to ask for the entire translation of the document.

24             JUDGE ORIE:  Yes.  Well, it's' a very lengthy document from what

25     I'm aware of, so I'm not insisting on having the whole of the document

Page 15519

 1     translated, but at least the paragraphs in relation to which the witness

 2     gives evidence.

 3             MR. MISETIC:  Yes.

 4             JUDGE ORIE:  And I'm a bit puzzled anyhow, because this piece of

 5     translation is -- as it is uploaded in e-court at this moment, which is a

 6     -- I have one -- there's a full translation uploaded of the -- of the

 7     table of contents which follows a three pages of kind of cover pages, so

 8     it's a six-page document.  And I'm just trying to find ... the original

 9     uploaded is in e-court, 54 pages.  And then we have another -- oh, no,

10     suddenly the ... yes, and then we have the three pages translation which

11     I can now access in e-court going up to and including 114 which was

12     previously not accessible to me.  So it is an incomplete record.

13             MR. MISETIC:  Yes, thank you, Mr. President.  We will get a

14     translation of those sections as well uploaded into e-court.

15        Q.   Mr. Lausic, let me turn your attention again to Exhibit P2189,

16     please.

17             THE WITNESS:  [Interpretation] I apologise, Mr. President.  Could

18     I be permitted to complete the sentence I began while quoting

19     paragraph 1.1.5 of this annual report?  I believe it to be important.

20             JUDGE ORIE:  Yes.  Our problem is that we have no paragraph 1.1.5

21     available.  If you think that paragraph 1.1.5 is of great importance,

22     then Mr. Misetic is invited to at least take care that 1.1.5 is

23     translated as quickly as possible so that can you revisit it.  But the

24     Chamber has difficulties in receiving evidence and comment on a document

25     which is -- which the Chamber can't read.

Page 15520

 1             But Mr. Misetic has an opportunity to -- before you leave, to

 2     address the matter.

 3             Please proceed, Mr. Misetic.

 4             MR. MISETIC:  Thank you, Mr. President.

 5        Q.   This, again, is the Operative Action Varivode.  We saw that on

 6     Wednesday together.

 7             Let me -- you -- as we recall, you put together a team of people

 8     to begin conducting investigations about allegations of murder.

 9             First, I note that in Operative Action Varivode, this was a

10     coordinated action with the MUP.  Is that correct?

11        A.   It is.

12        Q.   Is it also correct to say that at no time in Operative Action

13     Varivode was it suggested that you needed to have General Gotovina

14     participate in assisting in the investigation?

15        A.   As far as I recall, I did not receive it from the Chief of Staff

16     of Operation Varivode, to the effect that there was a need for such a

17     thing.  The staff or the headquarters was well capable of efficiently

18     organising and implementing the action.

19        Q.   Okay.  With respect -- that is -- was a specific question for

20     Varivode.  Generally speaking, the MUP and the military police had the

21     compatibility of officially -- efficiently implementing investigative

22     actions without having to involve the military in any investigation.

23     Correct?

24        A.   Only partially.

25        Q.   Well, are you saying that the -- the military police and the

Page 15521

 1     civilian police were not capable in their entirety of conducting and

 2     implementing investigative actions?

 3        A.   In any case, if an investigation is underway against HV members

 4     for which there is reasonable doubt that they had perpetrated without

 5     close cooperation with their commanders who would make available to those

 6     included in the investigation the space they need for work, as well as to

 7     have the perpetrators available, then that cannot be efficient.

 8        Q.   I didn't mean to suggest that you wouldn't need the cooperation

 9     of military people in a military investigation.  What I'm saying is that

10     in terms of leading an investigation, the military police and the

11     civilian police were capable of leading and organizing investigative

12     actions without having to involve the military in organizing an

13     investigative action, generally speaking.

14        A.   What do you include in the term "organisation"?  If I am carrying

15     out a crime investigation because there are reasonable grounds to believe

16     that the members of a concern unit are the perpetrators of a certain

17     crime, then it is only normal to expect that the commander as well as all

18     of the officers of that unit cooperate closely with the officers and

19     investigators.

20             In that way, I introduce them as active participants in the

21     investigation itself.

22        Q.   Let me use your language.  You, in the military police, carry out

23     the investigation, and then you seek the cooperation of military

24     commanders in carrying out your investigation.  Correct?

25        A.   Yes.  If there is indicia that the perpetrators come from a unit

Page 15522

 1     or another organisational part of the Croatian army.

 2        Q.   Yes.  Thank you.

 3             MR. MISETIC:  Madam Registrar, we're going to stick with

 4     OA Varivode for a few minutes.

 5             Mr. Registrar, if I could have - or Madam Registrar, I'm sorry -

 6     Exhibit D802, please.

 7        Q.   And you can flip through this, if you wish, Mr. Lausic.  This is

 8     pursuant to your order of the 6th of October, which we just had on the

 9     screen.  Here is one of the reports coming back in the action team about

10     what they had done in the actions that were undertaken together with the

11     MUP.  It is sent directly to your attention, and if you flip through

12     this, there are meetings are identified in point 1 to coordinate the

13     work.

14             You can turn the page.

15             Check-points are being set up.

16             MR. MISETIC:  Turn to the second page in English, please.

17        Q.   Now let me take a step back here so there's no confusion.

18     Operative Action Varivode was not just an investigation of the killing at

19     Varivode, was it?  It was a broader investigation.  Am I correct?

20        A.   I could not provide you with a precise answer.  I would have to

21     go back to the transcript as well as my witness statement, in which I

22     answer that precisely.  Since I was able to prepare myself, I answered

23     therein how it was that the operative action Varivode came about.  I

24     believe it was because of the initiative of Mr. Benko who was Assistant

25     minister of the interior in charge of the crime investigation police.  He

Page 15523

 1     advised me of the case, but I cannot tell you anything on top of that

 2     without referring to the transcript itself.

 3        Q.   I think if we can take a look at this report and it might give

 4     you an indication about the scope of what OA Varivode was about.

 5             MR. MISETIC:  So if we can go to page 3 in the English, please,

 6     which is -- and we're referring to numbered paragraph 3 in the original.

 7     Actually you can see the intro into paragraph 3 says:

 8             "Based on the presentation and overview of how the units were

 9     engaged, tasks were issued for a 12/12 work schedule.  The formation of

10     14 duty patrol cars, daily visited by monitoring directing teams.

11             Then if we go to section 3.

12             "These are the results of OA Varivode from 0600 hours on 7

13     October to 2200 hours on 10 October:

14             "Search the identification papers of 1282 HV members.  1050 HV

15     vehicles were searched.  17 men were searched.  Breakdown of HV members

16     brought in for looting property.  Broken it down by the various units in

17     that three-day period."

18             If we turn the page in English, please.

19        Q.   The identity of 69 civilians was established.  28 were removed

20     while attempting to steal property.  11 were warned.  9 were turned over

21     to the MUP as persons caught perpetrating the criminal offence of

22     stealing property.  Confiscation of items.  15 disciplinary reports were

23     submitted against HV members.

24             Now, if I can ask you there, that's because one of the duties of

25     the military police when you are able to identify a soldier whose engaged

Page 15524

 1     in some disciplinary offence whether at a check-point or someplace else,

 2     the military police completes a report and submits it to that soldier's

 3     commander to take disciplinary measures.  Correct?

 4        A.   It is.

 5             MR. MISETIC:  If we can go to the bottom.  There is much more

 6     detail throughout this, and I won't take the time to go through all of

 7     it.

 8        Q.   But it's clear -- the bottom of page 4, for example, which is the

 9     second paragraph -- right.  They're both on the screen now.

10             "The engagement of the crime investigation military police to

11     shed light on these serious criminal offences began on 2 October 1995,

12     when the first working meeting was held at 0830 hours attended by the

13     administration of the RH MUP and military police administration staff.

14     It was at that meeting that this service received its first information

15     of the murders, based on which it then acted.  Namely, the crime

16     investigation military police was informed of 11 cases in which one or

17     more civilians were murdered by unknown perpetrators."

18             MR. MISETIC:  If we can turn the page, please.

19        Q.    "Special emphasise" --

20             MR. MISETIC:  I'm sorry, I think I'm working from a different

21     copy; I apologise.  If we scroll to the top of this page, please.  To the

22     top of the English page, please, and back in the original document, I

23     think.  I apologise.  My mistake.  It is numbered page 5 in the English

24     at the top and -- correct.

25             Can we scroll up further on top of the English page, please.

Page 15525

 1     Okay.  I guess it's one page back then.  Yes, I'm sorry.  And if we can

 2     now go back one page in the B/C/S as well.  There we go.

 3        Q.   It says:

 4             "Namely the crime investigation military police was informed of

 5     11 cases in which one or more civilians were murdered by unknown

 6     perpetrators.  Special emphasise was placed on cases with justified

 7     indications that the possible perpetrators or witnesses of a murder could

 8     have been members of the HV.

 9             "In only two cases information of a low level of verification

10     concerning the participation of HV members was presented."

11             And then it identifies the two --

12             MR. MISETIC:  If we could turn the page, I'm sorry, in Croatian

13     and in English.

14        Q.   "In the two that had some low level of verification were in" --

15     it says Gosic, but I believe the village is actually Gosic and Zrmanje.

16             And then the conclusion was:

17             "All other information pertaining to these or other murder cases

18     pointing to possible involvement of HV members were of a much lower level

19     of verification and did not warrant the involvement of military police

20     crime investigators."

21             Now, my question is:  First, is it your recollection that the

22     first time that the crime investigation military police received

23     information about murders in the newly liberated areas was at a meeting

24     on the 2nd of October, 1995?

25        A.   I believe I can confirm that.  One of my basic remarks in my

Page 15526

 1     discussion with Mr. Benko, the Assistant Minister of the interior, was

 2     that we cannot act upon events of which we had not been notified.  Later

 3     in the assessment of this operation, I also stressed the importance of

 4     acquainting the military police with certain events that we can act upon

 5     and in which we can get some results together in cooperation our

 6     colleagues from the Ministry of Interior.

 7             MR. MISETIC:  Now, if we can turn the page in English, please, to

 8     the bottom of page 6.  Okay.

 9        Q.   Now, after operative action Varivode was launched, and three or

10     four days into this operation, the conclusion was:

11             "We conclude that after processing the crimes and undertaking

12     other action under our jurisdiction and based received information of a

13     low level of confirmation, we cannot talk about well founded indications

14     that the perpetrators of unsolved murders were from the HV."

15             And if we turn the page, you can see that it is signed and

16     stamped by Colonel Damir Kozic.

17             Now, do you recall as of 11 October 1995, was it the position of

18     the military police crime investigation section that, in fact, "we could

19     not talk about well-founded indications that the perpetrators of unsolved

20     murders were members of the HV"?

21        A.   I'm not quite clear on your question.  Do you want me to confirm

22     the report?

23        Q.   What I'm asking you is based on this report, which went to you,

24     as of 11 October 1995, was it the conclusion of the military police

25     administration with the information it had at that time that the

Page 15527

 1     allegations of -- that the perpetrators of unsolved murders were from the

 2     HV were not well founded?

 3        A.   I can't state in any precise terms about what I was thinking

 4     about it or the administration was thinking about it when we received the

 5     report.  Since the report was submitted by one of the chiefs of one of

 6     the administrations of the military police, Colonel Kozic, as one of

 7     those who were in charge of Operation Varivode, of course, he was fully

 8     trusted.

 9        Q.   Now, another question is:  This type of information about ongoing

10     investigations of crime being committed by HV members, this report goes

11     only to you, doesn't go to military commanders.  Why doesn't it go to

12     military commanders?

13        A.   Which military commanders do you have in mind?

14        Q.   Well, I guess I'm particularly concerned about a certain Military

15     District Commander.  So let me ask you about Military District

16     Commanders.  Why didn't it go to them?

17        A.   If we can go back to the order establishing the staff of

18     Operative Action Varivode, then I'd like to go back to that document,

19     please.

20        Q.   Sure.

21             MR. MISETIC:  It's Exhibit P2189, please.

22        A.   This is my order to the 71st and 72nd Battalions and to the

23     chiefs of the military -- of the departments of the military police

24     administration which contains quite precise and specific tasks about who

25     the staff of the operative action will comprise, the modus operandi of

Page 15528

 1     the forces, the reserve forces, the reporting system.

 2             If we could go on to the next page, please.

 3             The order was sent to my higher up in the Ministry of Defence;

 4     the Assistant Minister of Defence; the minister of security; and to the

 5     minister of the interior, Mr. Moric.  That was my chain of command.

 6             MR. MISETIC:

 7        Q.   Okay.  That's understood.  My question or let me put to you.

 8     This information about ongoing investigations didn't go to

 9     General Gotovina because there was no need for that information to go to

10     General Gotovina.  Correct?

11        A.   Nothing prevented the commanders of the 71st and 72nd Battalions,

12     in their turn, to report in their own reports on the course of the action

13     because it was supposed to say in what way they were using the human and

14     materiel resources.  And they were supposed to say what sort of results

15     they achieved because they were very interesting to us.  We saw that in

16     the report, and this is something that a commander should definitely be

17     interested in.

18        Q.   Well, let me -- what somebody wasn't prevented from doing isn't

19     the issue here.  The issue is what you ordered, and if you felt that it

20     was important that General Gotovina be involved in this operation and get

21     information about this information -- about this operation, you would

22     have put in the order that this information should be copied to

23     General Gotovina.  Right?

24        A.   That's one way of interpreting it.  However, the operative action

25     is taken over a certain territory, with a certain objective, and with

Page 15529

 1     certain forces.  Primarily the individual who ordered such an action is

 2     the one to be reported to.  However, since this task was to be

 3     implemented in the areas of responsibility of the 71st and 72nd

 4     Battalions, the commanders, in their daily reports, had to inform their

 5     own levels of command in their Military Districts both about the results

 6     and the course of the action.  I believe that looking at the daily

 7     reports of the 72nd Battalion, one would actually see that all the

 8     actions and events would be indicated there, as were indicated here,

 9     concerning the check-points and the arrested members of the HV and so on

10     and so forth.

11        Q.   You just walked into my question next, Mr. Lausic.  Because I

12     don't think the daily reports actually reflect that.  And we can take a

13     look at P2183, which is the daily reports in October.  And my next

14     question to you was going to be why, in the daily reports, you don't have

15     the results of the Operative Action Varivode.

16             MR. MISETIC:  If we can go to the first page, please.

17        Q.   "Criminality" --

18             And, again, this is similar to what we saw yesterday was in the

19     daily reports.  A motor vehicle was stopped; somebody verbally and

20     physically assaulted a Mr. Rajcic; a pistol was confiscated, et cetera.

21             Go to the next point.  Four soldiers got into a fight with a

22     civilian.  Zupanic sustained serious injuries in his stomach area and was

23     hospitalised.

24             We can flip through these.  Mr. Lausic, but these type of reports

25     aren't the results of Operation Action Varivode being reported to the

Page 15530

 1     Split Military District Command about what your criminal police was

 2     investigating and the results.

 3             So let me put to you again.  The information about ongoing

 4     criminal investigations was something that was being reported up to the

 5     military police administration.  Correct?

 6        A.   My apologies, but, first of all, I have to say that you read out

 7     the events which transpired on the 1st and 2nd October, and the report we

 8     were looking at was a summary report concerning the period between 6th

 9     and 10th of October, I mean the report submitted by Colonel Kozic.

10        Q.   I can get you those dates as well.  And while we're pulling that

11     up, let me ask you the next question I was going ask you which is,

12     something -- have you ever seen a daily report in the military police

13     said, We have a suspicion that somebody -- some HV soldier committed a

14     crime, but we don't know what to do.

15        A.   I don't understand the question.  A query addressed to me from

16     whom?

17        Q.   These reports are reports of what happened after the military

18     police took action.  Correct?

19        A.   Correct.

20        Q.   There is an system and a procedure prescribed by rules and law,

21     once a perpetrator has been entered into the system by the military

22     police.  Correct?

23        A.   Correct.

24        Q.   There is nothing for a commander to do on the basis of this

25     report except wait for the process, the system to run its course, whether

Page 15531

 1     it's the criminal justice system, the disciplinary courts, et cetera,

 2     unless a disciplinary complaint has been brought to the attention of the

 3     commander, as I indicated to you earlier this morning, that the military

 4     police would also send a report to the commander to ask him to take

 5     action to -- to assert a disciplinary measure.

 6        A.   I apologise, Mr. Misetic, but I personally believe you are

 7     completely wrong.

 8             Let us go back to one event we can see on our screens, under

 9     item 3.

10             "On the 2nd of October, 1995, at 0400 hours soldiers

11     Stipica Babic member of the military post 2136 Split brought to the

12     dormitory of the barracks of Saint Nikola in Split a civilian "MM," aged

13     19 from Split.  And by use of physical force, commented rape on the same

14     person.

15             A patrol of the 72nd Military Police Battalion soldier Babic in

16     and took him into custody.  And the officers of the criminal

17     investigation department of the military police of the 72nd Military

18     Police Battalion, Split, will bring the perpetrator before an

19     investigating judge with a criminal report.

20             One always starts from the causes preceding the commission of a

21     crime.  If we're talking about this particular case, the circumstances

22     favourable to the commission of this crime is that -- the violation of

23     rules prescribed by the military police.  One of them being the

24     unauthorised entry into the barracks of --

25             JUDGE ORIE:  It seems that we're moving far away from what the

Page 15532

 1     question is about.  What Mr. Misetic, from what I understand, would like

 2     to know is, to what extent these reports, if they would be sent to the

 3     military command structure, what -- whether these reports were to require

 4     them to take any follow-up action, rather than just see how the process

 5     that had started would make further progress, just an observing position

 6     rather than any action to be taken upon.

 7             Now, it may be that the beginning of why a crime was committed

 8     that this is a matter of lack of discipline which may have consequences

 9     in general for restoring discipline.  But on these specific cases if you

10     would send them to the military commanders, you wouldn't expect them to

11     do anything apart from reading it and say, Oh, okay, is what happened,

12     and what will happen next in the proceedings.

13             That's what Mr. Misetic would like to know, whether you would

14     agree with that.

15             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.  I've

16     just answered Mr. Misetic's question by telling him that I believe him to

17     be completely wrong.

18             The cause of the criminal offence and the processing is the

19     violation of the rules of service of the armed forces.  On the basis of

20     this first report, the commander is entitled to --

21             JUDGE ORIE:  [Previous translation continues] ... let me stop you

22     here for a second.  Because, otherwise, we are at risk to move far away

23     from the question again.

24             You say Mr. Misetic is wrong.  So if this would be sent to a

25     military commander, then he would have to take some action.

Page 15533

 1             Now, what action would you expect -- take one of the examples,

 2     what action should be taken by a military commander if he would have

 3     received the information about, for example, the rape you just mentioned?

 4     What would he have to do on the basis of this report if he would have

 5     received it?

 6             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.

 7             He would have to designate the officer who would be in charge of

 8     the disciplinary investigation, or, rather, scene of crime investigation.

 9     The officer would take all the actions required to establish the facts of

10     the case; that is, whether the rules of service or some other rules of

11     the armed forces were violated, that officer would submit a report to the

12     commander on the disciplinary investigation that was conducted.  And on

13     the basis of that report, if the investigation were to indicate that

14     there was a breach of discipline involved, he would be duty-bound to

15     impose disciplinary measure.  But if the investigation were to show that

16     the -- a major breach of discipline was involved, the disciplinary

17     charges would be brought against that soldier before a disciplinary

18     court.  The upshot of that could be that the soldier, if he is an active

19     serviceman of the Croatian army, could be dishonourably discharged,

20     et cetera.  All these actions can be taken without awaiting the end of

21     the court proceedings initiated for that particular criminal offence.

22             MR. MISETIC:

23        Q.   Mr. Lausic, now, you have said that I'm completely wrong; and I'm

24     going to say that you're completely wrong.

25             JUDGE ORIE:  Well, that's one to one.  Yes.

Page 15534

 1             MR. MISETIC:

 2        Q.   Look at Article 15 of the rule, Mr. Lausic.  Let's stick to the

 3     rules.

 4             Now what the military police is supposed to do -- if we could

 5     have P880 on the screen please.  Article 15 says:  "The military police

 6     has the following powers."

 7             MR. MISETIC:  Page 8 in the English, please; page 7 in the B/C/S.

 8     And it's subsection 3.  It should be the next page in the Croatian.

 9        Q.   Now:

10             "Members of the military police submit a disciplinary report

11     against military personnel who violate military discipline and a criminal

12     report against persons who commit a crime that falls within the

13     jurisdiction of a military court."

14             Now the question I put to is, on the basis of the daily report if

15     a -- if it's a disciplinary infraction that led to the criminal activity,

16     then it was your military police that was responsible for submitting the

17     criminal report and the disciplinary report to the relevant commander.

18     The commander doesn't have to look at the daily report and assume that

19     your military police didn't do what it was supposed to do under the

20     rules.

21        A.   I must admit that I don't find the question clear.  The reporting

22     of the commander on such an event which would contain these facts,

23     wouldn't that fulfil the requirements under the rule to submit

24     disciplinary -- a disciplinary report or bring disciplinary charges?

25     Well, of course, a report on the event ...

Page 15535

 1             MR. MISETIC:  Mr. President --

 2             JUDGE ORIE:  Again, there seems to be a lot of confusion.

 3             Let focus on the example of the rape, as we find it, under item 3

 4     in this October report.

 5             You were asked what the use would be of sending this report to a

 6     military commander, what follow-up would they have to give to that?  You

 7     explained that he had to take action so that it would be investigated by

 8     someone designated to do a disciplinary investigation.  Were the -- was

 9     there any violation of the rules of discipline?

10             Now -- so that would have been the purpose of sending it to the

11     military commander, who, as you said, doesn't just sit back and wait what

12     happens, but you said he would have to take action.

13             Now Mr. Misetic takes you to this rule which says that if there's

14     a violation of military discipline and in cases it amounts to a crime, it

15     is the military police who will investigate and will report, take the

16     case to the extent necessary to the investigating judge and bring them to

17     the -- into the military judicial system, and report on the violation of

18     discipline to the commander.  Clearly indicating that Mr. Misetic

19     disagrees with you that the commander who receives a report like this one

20     would need it take any action because he doesn't have to designate anyone

21     to do the investigation for disciplinary proceedings because the report

22     on that violation of -- of the rules of discipline, he would receive that

23     anyhow without taking any action because it was the task of the military

24     police.

25             So that seems to keep the both of you apart.  Mr. Misetic says

Page 15536

 1     that's exactly what the military police does:  They take care of both

 2     follow up in terms of criminal procedure of bringing the case to court,

 3     and they would also take care of reporting to the commander about the

 4     violation of rules of discipline.

 5             Now you say, no, nevertheless it would be useful to receive this

 6     report because you have to take action in view of preparing whether any

 7     disciplinary measures have to be taken.  No, says Mr. Misetic, that's

 8     done by the military police as well.  They just deliver their results of

 9     their investigations to the commander.

10             Could you, please, comment where Mr. Misetic, if I have

11     understood you well, is wrong and why you are right.

12             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.

13             The disciplinary proceedings are always conducted by the

14     commander either through a disciplinary investigation at the end of

15     which, if a minor breach of discipline, disciplinary measure is imposed,

16     or where a major breach of discipline is involved, then there are

17     disciplinary charges brought.  It -- and this is always conducted by the

18     commander of the unit, the member of which is a suspect of having

19     breached the rules of service.  And it is the officers of the criminal

20     investigation department of the military police who carry out the

21     investigation, at the end of which they report the results to the

22     commander, and send a copy of the -- send to him a copy of the criminal

23     report that they had sent to the military -- to the relevant competent

24     military prosecutor.

25             JUDGE ORIE:  Mr. Misetic, wouldn't it be a good time for a break.

Page 15537

 1             MR. MISETIC:  Yes, Mr. President.

 2             JUDGE ORIE:  We will have a break, and we'll resume at five

 3     minutes to 1.00.

 4                           --- Recess taken at 12.35 p.m.

 5                           --- On resuming at 12.57 p.m.

 6             JUDGE ORIE:  Before we continue, Mr. Misetic, I'd like it put on

 7     the record that the Chamber was informed by the OTP that there would be

 8     no applications for protective measures for the 92 quater statements

 9     which were admitted in the decision of the 16th of January of this year.

10     And similarly, that -- but that's after seven months and 14 days that the

11     same would be true for the 92 quater statements that were admitted on the

12     16th of June of last year.

13             Mr. Tieger, is that correctly understood?

14             MR. TIEGER:  That is my understanding, Your Honour.  I hope you

15     don't think we rushed things.

16             JUDGE ORIE:  No concerns about that at this moment.

17             Well, I introduced the matter, so perhaps that it was totally

18     superfluous to remind you of the 14 days, but perhaps it was not totally

19     superfluous.

20             Please proceed, Mr. Misetic.

21             MR. MISETIC:  Thank you, Mr. President.

22        Q.   Mr. Lausic, we have found these October daily reports but let me

23     just refresh everyone's recollection by taking you to Exhibit D802 first.

24             MR. MISETIC:  Madam Registrar, can we go to page 3 in the

25     English, which is page 3 in the B/C/S.

Page 15538

 1             MR. KAY:  I think we've got a LiveNote -- well ...

 2             MR. MISETIC:  Yes.

 3        Q.   Yes.  Now, we can do these totals, but this is again OA Varivode

 4     from 0600 hours on 7 October to 2200 hours on 10 October.  Then the

 5     fourth indented point is "HV members brought in for looting property,"

 6     and there are the different units.  And if we turn the page in English

 7     and scroll down in the Croatian, it says that 36 HV members, which is the

 8     total, were brought there for looting property.

 9             MR. MISETIC:  Now, if we turn the page in Croatian, please.

10        Q.   Now, there's an entry there.  You see it says:  "15 disciplinary

11     reports were submitted against HV members."

12             Now, why does the military police submit disciplinary reports?

13        A.   Are you perhaps hinting at the possibility that commanders have

14     -- that they can initiate disciplinary proceedings, and commanders alone?

15             Well, yes, in that case that would be --

16             THE INTERPRETER:  Interpreter's correction it is up to the

17     military police according to the rules of work of the military police.

18        A.   It is the military police that can submit disciplinary reports.

19     If there are reasons to suspect that there were breaches of discipline or

20     rules of service, that is an obligation on to itself for the commander to

21     initiate disciplinary proceedings, as well irrespective of what kind of

22     information he received from the military police in the specific case of

23     rape.

24        Q.   [Previous translation continues] ... It was just a general

25     question first, Mr. Lausic.

Page 15539

 1             Now, I want to get to the 36 soldiers brought in for looting

 2     between the 7th and the 10th October.  And you raise the issue of daily

 3     reports, so let's take a look at those.

 4             MR. MISETIC:  Madam Registrar, please, it is P2183, beginning at

 5     page 10 in the English and page 6 in the B/C/S.

 6        Q.   I'm going to ask Madam Registrar to flip through the entries in

 7     the daily reports for the 6th -- for the 7th, 8th, 9th.  And 10th.  And I

 8     want to tell me where, if you think you see report being these 36

 9     soldiers being brought in for looting.

10             So, for example, the 7th of October, in paragraph 2, a member of

11     a unit from Zagreb under the influence of alcohol got into a verbal and

12     physical fight with his wife.

13             MR. MISETIC:  Can we turn the page, please.  In English as well,

14     please.  Scroll at the top it may be a entry -- there we go.  And also in

15     the English, please.  It's the 6th, so if we can scroll down, pleases.

16        Q.   On the 8th under the section criminality, soldier Milosevic for

17     reasons that have not yet been established fired one round from a

18     semi-automatic rifle in the direction of Sergeant Vagner.

19             MR. MISETIC:  If we can turn the page in English, please.

20        Q.   On the 7th of October at an intersection, conscript Josip Stimac

21     in the company of civilians intercepted civilians from Zagreb, and while

22     threatening them with a kitchen knife, misappropriated 140 Kunas and five

23     audiotapes."

24             On the 8th at 1920 in front of the Kvaternik barracks in Gospic,

25     a soldier by -- Balenovic [phoen] while heavily intoxicated intentionally

Page 15540

 1     fired one round from an automatic rifle issued to him into his left shin.

 2             Now, if you wish, I can go on and on with these types of

 3     examples.  But there's no entry here for the 36 soldiers who were brought

 4     in for looting.

 5             Now, can you explain why those 36 soldiers wouldn't have been in

 6     a daily report?

 7        A.   First of all, Mr. Misetic, you are showing a daily summary report

 8     of security-related events drafted by the service duty of the MP

 9     administration.  This is not a daily report of the 71st or the 72nd

10     Battalion, depending on where the incidents occurred.

11             As can be seen from the report of Colonel Kozic, there were

12     dozens of controlled check-points established.  The duty service and this

13     daily summary security report in the categories contained, reports to the

14     highest instances on the most important events pertaining to crime,

15     breaches of discipline, security of military traffic, and other

16     security-related events.  I think those were the items.

17             Based on the reports of MP units, the duty officer extracts the

18     most important events, given their modus operandi, or the victim, or the

19     perpetrator, or with a view to establishing certain other circumstances.

20        Q.   [Previous translation continues] ... is it your suggestion that

21     the bringing in of 36 soldiers for looting in a four-day period wasn't as

22     important as a soldier shooting himself in the shin?  Why wouldn't 36

23     soldiers being brought in for looting over a four-day period be

24     significant enough to be in this report?

25        A.   As a single item, yes.  But they came in successfully, as they

Page 15541

 1     were being caught with misappropriated property throughout the

 2     time-period and at various locations.  The value of the property varied

 3     as well, as well as some other circumstances.  In order for me to give

 4     you a precise answer, I would have to go through all of the reports of

 5     the 71st and 72nd MP Battalions in relation to this period in order to be

 6     able to respond to the question which was, whether the daily reports

 7     encompassed these events as Mr. Kozic did in his summary report when he

 8     sent it to me, reporting on the four days and summarizing the results of

 9     Operative Action Varivode.

10        Q.   Mr. Lausic, if necessary, I'll take you through a different

11     example, but you've now indicated that you think maybe there's different

12     daily reports for the 72nd MP Battalion.

13             Let's spend some time on this, since it was the subject of your

14     direct examination, but ... let's look at the daily reports of the 72nd

15     MP Battalion for the 8th of August.

16             MR. MISETIC:  Which is, Madam Registrar, 65 ter 6974.

17        Q.   This is the report that would go, again, to Military District,

18     the prosecutors, military court.

19             If you read through that.  There is a shooting from an automatic

20     rifle in Zadar.  Military police came to the scene.

21             MR. MISETIC:  If we can turn to the next page, please.

22        Q.   "Breaches of the provisions of the rules of military discipline,

23     no events reported."

24             That's on -- if we can turn the page, unless there's -- there

25     might be something else in there that you might want it take a look at.

Page 15542

 1             But it's a traffic accident again.  This's the daily report of

 2     the 8th.  And I would also like you to take a look at --

 3             MR. MISETIC:  Mr. President, again, the same procedure, I tender

 4     it, unless it's on the Prosecution's bar table submission.

 5             MR. TIEGER:  It is it on the bar table submission, Your Honour.

 6             JUDGE ORIE:  Then it's understood there's no objections against

 7     admission.

 8             Please proceed.

 9             MR. MISETIC:  Thank you.

10             Now, if we could, Madam Registrar, take look at the daily report

11     for the next day, on the 9th, which is 65 ter 6961, please.

12             The 9th, criminality -- crime, I should say, nothing to report.

13     Breaches of the provisions of the rules of military discipline, nothing

14     to report.

15             Other events.  Somebody was driving at a high rate of speed and

16     hit a pedestrian.

17             So these are those daily reports of the 72nd MP Battalion that

18     you reference.  Now, I'd like to turn your attention to Exhibit D866,

19     please.

20                           [Defence counsel confer]

21             MR. MISETIC:  I apologise, Madam Registrar, I made a mistake.  It

22     should be D868.

23        Q.   Now this is a list of temporarily confiscated items at

24     check-points in the zone of responsibility of the 5th Company of the

25     military police, Sinj, which is part of the 72nd MP Battalion, and it's a

Page 15543

 1     report for the -- from the 8th of August.

 2             MR. MISETIC:  If we could turn the page, please.

 3        Q.   Now, this is a report of all the items that are seized at the

 4     check-point.

 5             MR. MISETIC:  If we can turn the page again.

 6        Q.   TVs, videos, refrigerators, et cetera.

 7             Now my question for you is:  Items are being seized at

 8     check-points, the military police is taking action to confiscate items,

 9     but that is not reflected in the daily reports.  My question is, why?

10        A.   I will be very cautious in my answer, given the terminology I

11     intend to use.

12             Because, unfortunately, then a daily report would resemble a

13     phone book.  By that I mean the sheer amount of things that had to be

14     encompassed by any given daily report.  The daily report mentions the

15     most specific events from the point of view of the categories envisaged,

16     the breaches of discipline, road traffic safety, et cetera, et cetera.

17             As for any action like this one, a report was surely submitted to

18     the unit commander to which that particular soldier belonged to.  We can

19     see that the military police administration and its duty service was

20     always compiling reports of nine different MP battalions, which, in turn,

21     made summary reports from each of their respective 50 different

22     organisational elements.  Only the most important events are mentioned,

23     be it from the point of view of the way that offences were committed or

24     if there were victims or the perpetrators were of a certain nature, that

25     goes into the summary, and that's why it's called summary of

Page 15544

 1     security-related events in the past 24 hours.  I neither confirm nor deny

 2     that the commander of that particular unit involved was informed on each

 3     and every single event or was not informed.

 4             As for in what way and form, that I can't say.  That would be my

 5     answer.

 6        Q.   Okay.  But my question to you is:  Do you agree that just because

 7     something wasn't in a daily report wouldn't be reason for someone to

 8     conclude that the military police wasn't doing its job in terms of other

 9     activities?

10        A.   It would be extremely unfair to say that the military police did

11     only what is contained in the summary of daily events.

12        Q.   And the military police did many other activities that wouldn't

13     be in the daily reports.  Correct?

14        A.   Yes, it is.  Yesterday there was an example of this.  You showed

15     us a copy from the duty service register of the 4th Company of the

16     72nd Battalion, if I'm not mistaken.  We saw a few entries, reflecting a

17     whole spectrum of activities which one could not find in the daily

18     summary report of the 4th Company.

19        Q.   Okay.  Thank you, Mr. Lausic.

20             JUDGE ORIE:  Could I ask one or two additional questions, in

21     relation to this.

22             MR. MISETIC:  Yes.

23             JUDGE ORIE:  This list dated the 8th of August of items that were

24     temporarily confiscated, would that be the result of one day activity, or

25     would it be for more days?

Page 15545

 1             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I apologise, Mr. President.  I

 2     would have to see the introductory part of the document.

 3             JUDGE ORIE:  Could we move to the cover page.  It reads that it's

 4     "report on items temporarily confiscated at check-points in the zone of

 5     responsibility of the 5th Company of the military police, Sinj."

 6             More days?  One day?

 7             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If I may, I'd like to draw your

 8     attention to the following.  This report bears the date of the 8th of

 9     August.  In the first paragraph, those submitting the report state the

10     following:

11             "By authorised officials and as of the points when the offensive

12     operation ceased and the occupied territories were liberated in the area

13     of responsibility of the 5th Company of the military police of Sinj, the

14     following objects were temporarily seized."

15             This means that -- it includes the preceding three or four days.

16     Three, I suppose.  I cannot be more precise than that.

17             In any case, given the date of the report and the first

18     paragraph, I believe it includes at least three days of work at the

19     check-points.

20             JUDGE ORIE:  Yes.  Although -- do we have that in our

21     translation?  It seem that just a portion is missing, or am I --

22             MR. MISETIC:  It's missing.  And, again, I do recall this being a

23     65 ter so -- and there's an OTP number on the bottom.

24             JUDGE ORIE:  Yes.  Again, someone has translated, but didn't

25     consider it important enough to translate this portion as well,

Page 15546

 1     apparently.  It's not one word, it's three full lines which explains the

 2     document.

 3             MR. MISETIC:  Yes.

 4             JUDGE ORIE:  Could we --

 5             MR. MISETIC:  [Overlapping speakers] ...

 6             JUDGE ORIE:  I beg your pardon.

 7             MR. MISETIC:  We'll get it corrected and uploaded in e-court,

 8     sir.

 9             JUDGE ORIE:  Yes.  I have one or two more questions on this

10     document.  Temporarily confiscating, could you explain what is, in fact,

11     meant.  This Chamber has heard evidence that not always the documents

12     that were confiscated or temporarily confiscated were always kept in

13     possession of those who had confiscated them, that sometimes it was left

14     in the hands of those from whom it was confiscated.

15             Could you comment on that.

16             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. President, the military police

17     took over its model of activity from the civilian police, as well as

18     certain forms, printed forms used by the civilian police.  By the same

19     token, we printed the form entitled "Temporarily Confiscated Items."

20     Those forms are made in three copies, in triplicate, irrespective of what

21     the object concerned is, in this case, it would be different types of

22     property starting with vehicles and -- down to house appliances or tools.

23     However, some of these objects can also be the objects with which crimes

24     had been perpetrated, as well as illegal substances, narcotics.  All of

25     that is entered in the form which is then signed by --

Page 15547

 1             JUDGE ORIE:  Mr. Lausic, you give a lot of details on who signed

 2     and from the back of the page.  What I was interested in is, were all

 3     these well over 200 items, as you see them here, would all those items be

 4     handed over to those who temporarily confiscated them?  Or was there any

 5     chance that some were left in the hands of those who carried those goods

 6     when they were confiscated?

 7             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I thought you were

 8     asking me to clarify the word, "temporary" or "temporarily."  That is why

 9     I began with a comprehensive answer.

10             JUDGE ORIE:  Yes.  Could you then now continue with the other

11     part of my question, whether they were actually taken in the hands of

12     those who confiscated the items.

13             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Very well.  The objects were taken

14     away.  In keeping with my order, which is in the documents, if the

15     objects concerned could be used in military units, they were handed over

16     to the logistics departments of military units or another organisational

17     structure of the Croatian army.

18             If the objects concerned could not be used by the armed forces,

19     they were handed over to civilian authorities.

20             JUDGE ORIE:  Civilian authorities being who, in this case?

21             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The civilian authorities in the

22     newly liberated area were the municipal services or government

23     commissioners designated to certain areas and their competent services

24     and departments.

25             JUDGE ORIE:  You want to say if there was no need for these goods

Page 15548

 1     to use them by military authorities, they were passed on to the civilian

 2     authorities for using them.

 3             Could I imagine a television set to be given to a welfare

 4     service, so as to provide it to -- to an elderly home or something like

 5     that?  Is that how I have to understand it?

 6             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That would be one way of

 7     understanding it, Mr. President.

 8             JUDGE ORIE:  What would be the other way?

 9             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In the sense that the civilian

10     authorities have such items handed over by the military police at their

11     disposal to make use of them as they see fit.  They could also be handed

12     over to the families of displaced persons whose homes need furnishing,

13     et cetera.

14             We did not really go into the ways in which the civilian

15     authorities would be making use of such items.  Our priority was to make

16     sure that we disposed of such items as they would constitute a burden a

17     given MP unit.

18             JUDGE ORIE:  So they were not stored for further -- further

19     proceedings, but they were distributed military if for -- if there was

20     any military need to use them; civilian, if the remainder would be useful

21     for the civilian services.

22             Could I then ask you, cars, vehicles, motor vehicles, were they

23     usually used by the military; or were they often passed to the civilian

24     authorities?

25             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Can I first be allowed to answer

Page 15549

 1     the question that was put to me first?

 2             In order to ascertain the -- who the owner of the appropriated

 3     item was -- well, this had to be done because one always had to know who

 4     the aggravated party of a given crime of theft was.  That was the

 5     precondition in order to initiate proceedings for that particular crime.

 6             In the cases, such as this one, complaints we received from --

 7     or, rather, the information we received from the persons who were in

 8     possession of these items was that they collected them on the way, that

 9     the items had been discarded, and so on and so forth.

10             Now to answer your latter question, there were such instances

11     where the vehicles concerned remained in possession of the Croatian army

12     for their purposes.

13             JUDGE ORIE:  Yes.  Now, we see a lot of cars and a lot of

14     equipment.  For cars, were they ever returned to the rightful owners?

15             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In the follow-up actions aimed at

16     identifying the owners of these cars, we tried to ascertain who they

17     were, and if an owner was identified, efforts were made at returning the

18     vehicles to the rightful owner.

19             In the years following 1995, especially once the authorities

20     resumed control of the entire liberated area in 1997, many of the

21     citizens who had fled the region and which were covered by Operation

22     Storm and returned to the Republic of Croatia, filed and many of them are

23     still filing requests for some of their property to be returned to them.

24     In most cases, since it is impossible to return their rightful property

25     to them, they receive compensation.

Page 15550

 1             JUDGE ORIE:  Yes.  Now, how many cars are you aware of were

 2     returned to the civilian owners from which they had been taken or stolen.

 3             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I wouldn't be able

 4     to give that you information.  I can see under number 1 here, Mercedes

 5     truck with the UN licence plates.  In other words, a vehicle used by the

 6     forces of UNPROFOR.  I believe that that particular vehicle was returned.

 7             JUDGE ORIE:  And my question was not about UN vehicles but about

 8     civilians.

 9             Are you aware of one single car taken from a civilian or stolen

10     from a civilian person that was returned to that person?

11             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I do have information to that

12     effect, but I wouldn't be able to tell you anything specific, in terms of

13     the location involved or the individual involved.

14             JUDGE ORIE:  And, similarly, for cars taken or stolen, are you --

15     could you give us any detail on one case where compensation has been paid

16     to that person.

17             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.  A returnee of Serbian

18     ethnicity who returned to the Republic of Croatia filed a request for

19     indemnity listing all the items that were taken away from him.  And the

20     judicial bodies of the Republic of Croatia, who were seized of his

21     lawsuit, resolved the case in -- in a positive way.  That's to say, in

22     favour of him being paid an indemnity.

23             Let me tell you how it is that I came to know this.  I'm

24     referring to the period up until 2003, at which time I was the chief of

25     the military police administration.  The judicial bodies would be seeking

Page 15551

 1     information from both the military police and the civilian police about

 2     whether any of the items that the injured party listed as having been

 3     taken away from him at the location where he resided, had been

 4     confiscated.  Alternatively, they were seeking to receive information

 5     about the units that were in combat in that area.

 6             JUDGE ORIE:  Could I -- one additional question.

 7             How many of these requests, approximately, you dealt with until

 8     2003?  10, 100, 1.000, 20 -- something, give -- if you could, could you

 9     give me a rough figure of --

10             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can't be precise.  In the early

11     days, such requests or such lawsuits were few and far between, and then

12     they grew in intensity.  There were dozens of them.  And according to the

13     latest information I have, something I learned from the grapevine was

14     that the situation was such that the justice administration is flooded

15     with such indemnity claims in relation to the items that had been taken

16     away.

17             JUDGE ORIE:  My question was:  How many such requests you dealt

18     with until 2003.  You said I can't be precise.  I asked you to give a

19     rough figure.  Was it 10?  Was it more than 10?  Was it less than 10?

20     Was it only the one you just mentioned?  Could you please give me an

21     estimate.

22             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] There were up to a dozen cases at

23     the time when I was still active as the chief of the administration.

24             JUDGE ORIE:  You mean over those eight years since 1995 until

25     2003?

Page 15552

 1             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. President, it grew in frequency

 2     as of 2000.  I don't recall there having been as many such claims before

 3     that.

 4             JUDGE ORIE:  My question simply was when you say up to a dozen

 5     cases, I'm just verifying with you if that was, as you said, when you

 6     were still active as the chief of the administration, is it correct that

 7     that was in 2003.  So that was between 1995 and 2003.  Thank you for

 8     those answers.

 9             No, I have one additional question.  We see for a couple of days

10     - may have been they or four - well over 200 items.  The days the reports

11     that followed, were they of similar length?  Or did they contain more

12     items per three or four days?  Or were they reported on a daily basis?

13             Could you give us a indication.

14             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The activity aimed at preventing

15     the commission of such crimes and confiscating the items that had been

16     taken away definitely continued.  Between late September and through to

17     the end -- through to October, the number dwindled.  One can provide

18     summary information only once he's got information from his colleagues of

19     the Ministry of the Interior, since our presence in the area was

20     gradually reduced as the civilian police increased their presence.

21             JUDGE ORIE:  Let me stop you there.  I must admit, I do not know

22     the English word "to dwindle."  Could someone help me out so that I -- is

23     it reduce?

24             MR. MISETIC:  Yes.

25             JUDGE ORIE:  That's what I thought.  But I didn't know the word.

Page 15553

 1             Would I then have to understand that by late September and

 2     through October that then the frequency reduced?  Is that how I have to

 3     understand your answer?

 4             I am aware, Mr. Misetic, that I took up more than 15 minutes of

 5     -- well, not of your time, but of the time available.

 6             MR. MISETIC:  That's all right.

 7             JUDGE ORIE:  But we have to stop for the day.

 8             MR. MISETIC:  If I could just note -- advise the Chamber for the

 9     record.  In terms of the daily reports for the -- you had asked about

10     whether this was a summary for three days.  Those daily reports are also

11     on the Prosecution's bar table submission, and I can tell you that I

12     don't think that you'll find that they're any different than the ones

13     that you've already seen today.  But the Chamber will be able to examine

14     them.

15             JUDGE ORIE:  Yes.  Yes.

16             MR. KAY:  You Honour will recollect that they are part of the

17     stipulation made between the Prosecution and the Cermak Defence team

18     during Mr. Theunens's testimony.  I produced them in cross-examination to

19     him.  We made a stipulation, and then we have submitted to the Court

20     those documents that we were able to obtain in the EDS system on the same

21     matter.

22             JUDGE ORIE:  That's documents, of course, I asked the witness

23     about what his recollection was, and I asked him to give further

24     information about it.

25             Then if there is no other urgent further procedural matter, then,

Page 15554

 1     Mr. Lausic, I'd like to again instruct you not to speak with anyone about

 2     your testimony, whether already given or still to be given, and I'd like

 3     you to follow Madam Usher because I will just put one or two questions to

 4     the parties.  And we'd like to see you back on Monday morning.

 5             We expect you back on Monday morning, 9.00.

 6             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] As I expected.

 7             THE INTERPRETER:  Interpreters can't hear the witness.

 8             JUDGE ORIE:  Whether to restart.  It certainly was not part of

 9     his testimony, so let's ...

10                           [The witness stands down]

11             JUDGE ORIE:  Mr. Misetic, I'd like to know where approximately

12     you are.  Of course, the Chamber is aware that getting short concrete

13     answers is not easiest thing to achieve with this witness, but could you

14     give us an indication as where we are.

15             MR. MISETIC:  I would certainly think I will be finished by the

16     end of the first session on Monday, and hopefully earlier.

17             JUDGE ORIE:  Yes.

18             Is there any change in the assessment made by the other parties?

19             MR. KAY:  No, Your Honour.  One day.

20             MR. MIKULICIC:  No, Your Honour.  One section at least -- at

21     most.

22             JUDGE ORIE:  Yes.  Then the Chamber has an impression how we

23     could proceed.

24             We will adjourn, and we will resume on Monday, the 2nd of

25     February, at 9.00 in the morning, Courtroom I.

Page 15555

 1                            --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.50 p.m.,

 2                           to be reconvened on Monday, the 2nd day of

 3                           February, 2009, at 9.00 a.m.