Case: IT-95-11-PT


Judge Joaquín Martín Canivell

Mr Hans Holthuis

Decision of:
26 October 2004







Office of the Prosecutor:

Ms. Hildegaard Uertz-Retzlaff

Counsel for the Defence:

Mr. Predrag Milovancevic


I, Joaquín Martín Canivell, Judge in Trial Chamber I ("the Chamber") of the International Tribunal for the Prosecution of Persons Responsible for Serious Violations of International Humanitarian Law Committed in the Territory of the Former Yugoslavia since 1991 ("the Tribunal");

NOTING the Oral Decision taken during the Status Conference of 20 May 2004 setting a deadline for the submission of the Defence Pre-Trial Brief on 15 September 2004,1 reiterated in writing on 24 August 2004;2

NOTING the "Decision on Defence Motion for Extension to File Pre-Trial Brief" filed on 7 September 2004 extending, upon the request of the Defence for the accused Martic ("Defence"), the deadline for the filing of the Defence Pre-Trial Brief to 1 November 2004 ("September Decision");

BEING SEIZED of the "Defence’s Motion for Extension of Time to File Pre-Trial Brief", filed on 18 October 2004, whereby the Defence seeks a suspension of the September Decision until the Appeals Chamber has rendered a decision on the issue of the ranking of the case because "as the requests of the Defence for a proper ranking of the case and for an additional allotment are still unresolved for the reasons stated above, the Defence was unable to review the additional documents disclosed with the Prosecution’s pre-trial brief" ("Motion");3

NOTING the "Prosecution’s Response to Defence’s Motion for Extension of Time to File Pre-Trial Brief of 18 October 2004", filed on 20 October 2004, whereby the Prosecution opposes the Motion in part arguing that it opposes the open-ended extension of time requested by the Defence but accepts that since the trial is not scheduled to start soon, an extension of one or two months is reasonable;

CONSIDERING that the Defence submits arguments in support of the Motion which were already taken into consideration by the September Decision, mainly that it has not “review[ed] the additional documents disclosed with the Prosecution’s pre-trial brief" because it awaits for the Appeals Chamber’s decision on the issue of funds available to the Defence;

CONSIDERING that since the Defence does not submit any new arguments in support of its Motion, it is just requesting the Chamber to rescind its September Decision until the Appeals Chamber renders a decision;

CONSIDERING that the Defence was reminded in the September Decision of the Appeals Chamber’s ruling that when assigned counsel agreed to represent the accused, being aware of the system of remuneration for assigned counsel and that no change in the terms of representation or in the initial agreement subsequently occurred, counsel are required to fulfil their obligations to the International Tribunal;4

CONSIDERING that therefore the proceedings before the Appeals Chamber may finally result in a change in the terms of representation of Defence Counsel, but do not in any way affect the existing obligation of Defence Counsel to file his Pre Trial Brief;

CONSIDERING that the lack of compliance with the September Decision by not having “review[ed] the additional documents disclosed with the Prosecution’s pre-trial brief” and thereby not even showing an attempt to meet the deadline set by that decision is not in accordance with the fundamental professional duties Defence counsel is obliged to fulfil under the Statute, the Rules and the Code of Professional Conduct;


PURSUANT to Rules 65ter (F) and 127 of the Rules;

REJECTS the Motion;


Done in English and French, the English version being authoritative.

Dated this 26th Day of October 2004,
At The Hague,
The Netherlands.

Judge Joaquín Martín Canivell
Pre-Trial Judge

[Seal of the Tribunal]

1. Transcript, p. 144
2. Scheduling Order Setting Time for Submission of Defence Pre-Trial Brief.
3. Motion, para. 18.
4. Prosecutor v. Milan Milutinovic, Dragoljub Ojdanic, Nikola Sainovic, Decision on Interlocutory Appeal for Additional Funds, 13 November 2003, IT-99-37-AR73.2, para. 22.