Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 436

1 Thursday, 23 September 2004

2 [Status Conference]

3 [Open session]

4 [The accused entered court]

5 --- Upon commencing at 3.03 p.m.

6 JUDGE KWON: Could the Registrar please call the case.

7 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honour. Good afternoon, Your Honour.

8 This is the Case Number IT-03-69-PT, the Prosecutor versus Jovica Stanisic

9 and Franko Simatovic.

10 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.

11 Will both parties make their appearances.

12 MR. GROOME: Good afternoon, Your Honour. For the Prosecution

13 Dermot Groome assisted by Skye Winner.

14 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. And for the Defence, please.

15 MR. KNOOPS: Good afternoon, Mr. Geert-Jan Knoops and

16 Mr. Wayne Jordash for Mr. Stanisic.

17 MR. JOVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honour,

18 lawyer Zoran Jovanovic. I'm Defence counsel for the accused Simatovic.

19 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Mr. Jovanovic.

20 This is the first Status Conference, the last one being the one

21 that was held at the same time at the provisional release hearing. And

22 there are several pending matters in front of the Chamber that are

23 currently being reviewed by the Chamber. Two motions of which is related

24 to the protective measures which is sought by the Prosecution. That

25 decision will be rendered in due course.

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1 And another matter which is related to some financial matters on

2 the part of the Defence which has nothing to do with the Prosecution is

3 also looked into by the Trial Chamber. I think that's all for the pending

4 motions. Is there anything to raise from the parties in relation to

5 pending motions?

6 MR. GROOME: Not from the Prosecution, Your Honour.

7 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Knoops.

8 MR. KNOOPS: Your Honour, I respectfully draw the attention of the

9 Trial Chamber to the fact that the Defence --

10 JUDGE KWON: Trial Chamber III -- oh yes, II, yes.

11 MR. KNOOPS: II, oh yes, II.

12 I respectfully draw the attention of the Trial Chamber to the fact

13 that the Defence in the case of Mr. Stanisic files a request to the

14 Chamber to ask for an extension of time to file a reply to the registry's

15 response in the remuneration case.

16 JUDGE KWON: We are aware of the motion, too.

17 MR. KNOOPS: Thank you.

18 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Jovanovic.

19 MR. JOVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. At

20 yesterday's conference with respect to 65 ter, the Defence counsel of the

21 accused Mr. Franko Simatovic joined in that request putting in a new

22 motion which will be the subject of your decision making following a

23 motion from the Prosecution. We still haven't received that material that

24 the Prosecution has termed a sensitive sources. So we would like that

25 deadline to be extended as well for us to be able to deal with that part

Page 438

1 of the disclosed material once it is disclosed and then we can conduct an

2 investigation therein.

3 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Jovanovic, you are referring to the pre-trial

4 brief?

5 MR. JOVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, yes, precisely.

6 JUDGE KWON: We'll come to that matter later.

7 Well, why don't we deal with it directly. There's a request from

8 Mr. Stanisic's Defence that -- for the extension of time in filing the

9 Defence's pre-trial brief up until the 1st of March. Is it correct?

10 MR. KNOOPS: It is correct, Your Honour.

11 JUDGE KWON: Given that the pre-trial brief of the Prosecution has

12 been filed -- was filed in July -- on 15th --

13 MR. GROOME: On the 19th of July, Your Honour.

14 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.

15 And then the Defence was given about four months from then. And

16 there are still about -- almost two months from now up until 15th of

17 November. Is it not a bit too early to speak about the extension at this

18 moment?

19 MR. KNOOPS: Thank you for this question, Your Honour. Maybe.

20 The Defence is aware that the request was filed early. But on the other

21 hand, as things look now we expect that we will not be able to comply with

22 the time limit Your Honour sets due to, firstly, our own investigations

23 which shed new light on certain new issues and certain other issues which

24 are raised in the pre-trial brief extension motion. And on the other

25 hand, we also draw the attention to the fact that we would not like to

Page 439

1 pose the Trial Chamber nor the Prosecution with a request for an extension

2 of time limit very shortly before the limit expires which Your Honour has

3 set. And with all due respect, I think it's a fair estimation the Defence

4 has elaborated on in the motion itself. So we also think it's a matter of

5 due diligence to already request for it now and not confront Your Honours

6 and the Prosecutor with a request shortly before the time limit expires.

7 Also in view of the fact that Your Honour may be thinking of scheduling at

8 some moment the trial itself. So with all due respect, we don't think

9 that the request is made too early before the time limit.

10 And we reviewed the materials of the Prosecutor in the pre-trial

11 brief and as Your Honours have noticed the pre-trial brief expands twice

12 the normal size, so that means quite a task lies ahead of us. And, which

13 you already see in our motion, it's the intention of the Defence in the

14 case of Mr. Stanisic to file as much as possible a complete pre-trial

15 brief where we intend to address all the issues. That's also one of the

16 reasons that we seek more time than initially estimated by the Defence.

17 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Mr. Knoops.

18 And I understand, as was put by Mr. Jovanovic, Mr. Simatovic's

19 Defence team is joining in the same request of -- for an extension of

20 time?

21 MR. JOVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. Yes, I wanted

22 to address that matter. Thank you.

23 JUDGE KWON: Considering that I was sort of lenient in allowing

24 extension of time on the part of the Prosecution the previous time and

25 that some materials have yet to be disclosed -- but before that,

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1 Mr. Groome, do you have anything to say in relation to this?

2 MR. GROOME: Your Honour, it was my intention to respond in

3 writing to the Defence motion. I'd still appreciate an opportunity to do

4 that. Since there is no definite trial date, the Prosecution would have

5 no objection of the Court using its discretion to manage when the brief is

6 done. But I would add that I think that once the Prosecution is in

7 possession of at least a provisional Defence trial brief, the sooner we

8 have that, the sooner we can begin the process of identifying which issues

9 really aren't at issue in the trial and we can begin to narrow the scope

10 of the trial. So I think there is great benefit into -- at least

11 having -- at least a provisional trial brief before us on schedule or

12 soon thereafter so we can begin that process.

13 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Mr. Groome.

14 Considering the two points I mentioned earlier, I'm minded to

15 allow some extension of time, not in full as requested. I'm minded to

16 give one more week after the winter recess. That will be until the 18th

17 of January, which means the Defence team has been given about six months

18 from the date the Prosecution's pre-trial brief was filed. I think that

19 would be enough. So if you could do your best to comply with that

20 deadline.

21 MR. KNOOPS: Thank you very much, Your Honour, for your

22 appreciation.

23 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.

24 Then I will deal with some disclosure matters briefly. I

25 understand that Rule 66 disclosure are almost complete, with the exception

Page 441

1 of those witnesses for whom the protective measures are being sought. Is

2 that right?

3 MR. GROOME: Your Honour, that is correct with one exception. It

4 was discovered this morning that a witness statement for a B179 was --

5 fell through the cracks as it were because the witness was reclassified

6 from a sensitive source to a nonsensitive source at the last minute. That

7 has been disclosed to both counsel today. So at this stage now they are

8 in possession of all the witness statements that we are obliged to turn

9 over.

10 JUDGE KWON: And also I was informed that there are four witness

11 statements where translations are outstanding together with two audiotapes

12 and the interviews of Mr. Todorovic and Vasiljkovic.

13 MR. KNOOPS: That's correct, Your Honour. We anticipate that we

14 will have those translations and those audiotapes duplicated in the next

15 two weeks.

16 JUDGE KWON: Can I ask: did Mr. Vasiljkovic appear in another

17 trial didn't he?

18 MR. GROOME: Yes, Your Honour.

19 JUDGE KWON: But at that time the B/C/S version was not disclosed.

20 What was there?

21 MR. GROOME: Your Honour, they have the English -- the English

22 transcript of all of that was disclosed. I believe it was a problem in

23 the duplication of the audio/videotape so that they had -- that the

24 Defence is in possession of a B/C/S version of prior statements.

25 JUDGE KWON: Okay. And in relation to exhibits, most of them are

Page 442

1 also disclosed with some exceptions, which will be disclosed in due

2 course, very soon.

3 MR. GROOME: Yes, Your Honour. Predominantly all the exhibits

4 have been disclosed. Ms. Winner is in the process of doing an audit to be

5 sure that all translations -- that there were no mistakes made. But at

6 this stage all the exhibits have been disclosed on a single DVD.

7 JUDGE KWON: However, there are translations of 215 autopsy

8 reports which are outstanding and they are remaining a low priority.

9 MR. GROOME: Yes, Your Honour.

10 JUDGE KWON: Am I correct?

11 MR. GROOME: Yes, Your Honour. Given the workload that CLSS is

12 now facing, these autopsy reports are mostly comprised of just names of

13 the person, when they went missing and different material that -- it's

14 actually easy to understand what the document says without being

15 translated. And I think of all the documents or all the translations that

16 we are endeavouring to complete, that it would be of the lowest priority

17 of them.

18 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.

19 The Prosecution has five expert witnesses?

20 MR. GROOME: That's correct, Your Honour.

21 JUDGE KWON: And the reports -- four reports of whom are

22 disclosed.

23 MR. GROOME: Your Honour, at this stage the reports of four of

24 those experts now have been disclosed or filed. In yesterday's 65 ter

25 Conference I informed the senior legal officer that we intended to

Page 443

1 formally file the -- those reports of the four experts and it was agreed

2 among the parties that in lieu of that that it would be understood that

3 our disclosure would place Defence counsel on notice and they have in fact

4 filed their response to those expert reports. There was one outstanding

5 addendum to Mr. Nielsen's report that was filed yesterday. So now all

6 four of the experts -- all of their work is before the Chamber. The only

7 outstanding one is Ms. Ewa Tabeau, which she is currently fully engaged in

8 completing reports for other cases that have definite trial dates and some

9 even have trial dates early in the new year. I've spoken with her, she

10 believes that she can complete her work in this case prior to the

11 Christmas break. For the most part her work will be simply a subset of

12 the report which she filed in the Milosevic case, which has been disclosed

13 to counsel. There are some new statistics from Croatia which she will be

14 supplementing and creating an addendum. So there will be some different

15 material but predominantly it is the exact same material and her findings

16 are exactly the same as the report already in the possession of counsel.

17 JUDGE KWON: Given that the Defence is to file their pre-trial

18 brief by 18th of January, is it not possible for her to shorten the

19 preparation time for her report?

20 MR. GROOME: Your Honour, I've discussed this with her. I mean, I

21 think part of the problem that the Office of the Prosecutor is now facing

22 is that many people are leaving and with a hiring freeze we are unable to

23 hire people to replace them. Especially with somebody whose expertise in

24 this particular field -- I can always ask her to do her best to complete

25 the work as soon as possible. She works very hard, and I know she will do

Page 444

1 that. But it is a matter of cases -- that she is under very strict

2 deadlines so that they can begin the trials in January. But of course I

3 will convey the Court's wish that it be done sooner than December.

4 JUDGE KWON: What is suggested by the Prosecution is the basic

5 structure and the main content will be remaining the same as the one which

6 was tendered in Milosevic trial.

7 MR. GROOME: Exactly the same. As I explained to Defence counsel

8 yesterday, if they simply draw a line through those municipalities which

9 are not part of this indictment, they will virtually have the exact --

10 they will have the final report but it will have a different caption on

11 it. And then the additional piece which is what she needs to work on is

12 just the information -- it's new information that's available about

13 internally displaced persons from Croatia which was not part of the

14 Milosevic report.

15 JUDGE KWON: Having heard that, what would you say that if I put a

16 deadline on Dr. Tabeau's report as 15th of December so that the Defence

17 will work on the pre-existing draft and then have one month to edit

18 anything if anything appears on the new report.

19 MR. GROOME: We would be grateful for that, Your Honour, and

20 perhaps it would assist counsel if as soon as she has a draft of that

21 report I will forward that so they can begin their work and they will have

22 some preview of what her final report will be.

23 JUDGE KWON: Do you have any say, Mr. Knoops or Jovanovic, on this

24 matter?

25 MR. KNOOPS: No, Your Honour, thank you.

Page 445

1 MR. JOVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour, no.

2 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.

3 And there are some several supporting materials to be disclosed as

4 well.

5 MR. GROOME: There are some supporting materials for the

6 disclosure of the expert reports which we are putting together and will

7 forward to Defence counsel as soon as possible. Mr. Nielsen's first

8 report, 80 per cent of the material has now been disclosed. We will

9 disclose the remainder on EDS -- on the electronic disclosure system as

10 soon as it is available and Mr. Nielsen's addendum to his report we are

11 currently having translations made of those documents. And as soon as

12 they are received we will forward them. Ms. Tabeau, there is an addendum

13 to -- that was provided because she is a witness provided -- regarding her

14 work on the Galic trial. Although we were legally obliged to disclose

15 that, it really has no relevance for this case. If Defence counsel are

16 able to indicate to us which, if any, of the source material that the

17 experts rely on is of greater interest to them, we can of course shift the

18 priority so that material gets translated -- and to them first. So it

19 would be of assistance to us to know which reports or which material upon

20 which those reports were based is of the greatest assistance to them in

21 preparing their pre-trial brief.

22 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Mr. Groome. Defence must have heard that.

23 In relation to pre-trial brief, Prosecution suggested they are

24 minded to use the Rule 92 bis in the presentation of their evidence. How

25 many of them, could you remind them?

Page 446

1 MR. GROOME: Yes, Your Honour. Essentially the Prosecution will

2 endeavour to use Rule 92 bis or 89(F) wherever it is possible. So in the

3 Prosecution pre-trial brief we had proposed that 11 witnesses be taken

4 completely viva voce, that 49 witnesses be taken completely under Rule 92

5 bis, and that 55 witnesses be taken partially under 92 bis or 89(F). That

6 would be a total of 120 witnesses.

7 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. But the parties didn't find the time to

8 discuss about the matter or 92 bis or agreed or adjudicated facts yet.

9 MR. GROOME: That's correct, Your Honour.

10 JUDGE KWON: I would encourage you to find the time, suitable

11 time, to discuss it.

12 In relation to experts on any other matters, there will be --

13 there are many witnesses which will be related to both of the accused. So

14 I wonder whether the Trial Chamber could expect some kind of coordinations

15 between the Defence team of the two accused, for example in certain

16 cross-examination which Defence to go first or whether is there be some

17 common factual base. So I would encourage that, but before trial begins,

18 even in pre-trial cases, in submitting pre-trial briefs there may be some

19 common grounds which is common to both of the accused. So can I expect

20 that such coordination between the Defence team?

21 MR. KNOOPS: Your Honour, as far as the Defence of Mr. Stanisic

22 concerns, there is no reason to --

23 JUDGE KWON: In order to avoid some repetition and also

24 concentrate on more specific, important issues. Yes.

25 MR. KNOOPS: Of course, we're willing to share our ideas.

Page 447

1 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.

2 Is there any other matters to be dealt with today? Mr. Groome.

3 MR. GROOME: Your Honour, there is one matter with respect to Rule

4 68 material which I feel obliged to bring to your attention. Much of the

5 Rule 68 material now will be placed in the electronic disclosure system.

6 As of today, approximately 50 per cent of the material that will be placed

7 in that system is there now and is searchable by Defence counsel. It will

8 be another six weeks, perhaps a little bit longer, before 100 per cent of

9 the search material will be in that system. So until that time, as

10 Defence counsel don't have full access to the collections or the

11 searchable collections of the Office of the Prosecutor and I wanted to

12 bring that to your attention.

13 JUDGE KWON: So you're confident that it will be completed in six

14 weeks time from now.

15 MR. GROOME: I have very little confidence in any deadline, Your

16 Honour, given that the dire circumstances under which we find ourselves

17 these days.

18 JUDGE KWON: No observation from the Defence on that matter.

19 Any matters to raise from the Defence. Mr. Jovanovic?

20 MR. JOVANOVIC: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour. The Defence is

21 already selecting the material that it can access on the Prosecution's

22 side. So that's what we're doing at the moment. Thank you.

23 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Jordash.

24 MR. JORDASH: Could I just go back very briefly to the issue of

25 the Rule 68 material just to --

Page 448


2 MR. JORDASH: -- just to raise the issue now that clearly what goes

3 into our pre-trial brief may be subject to what we find within the Rule 68

4 material. There is a huge amount which needs to be gone through. So

5 simply just to flag up that what is in that pre-trial brief, lest it will

6 be our Defence in some detail, will obviously be subject to what is or may

7 be discovered within the overall Rule 68 material.

8 JUDGE KWON: Okay. We shall see what will come up later.

9 Mr. Stanisic, is there anything you would like to raise now?

10 THE ACCUSED STANISIC: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour, nothing.

11 Thank you.

12 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.

13 Mr. Simatovic?

14 THE ACCUSED SIMATOVIC: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour, nothing.

15 Thank you.

16 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.

17 So I officially put on record that the Prosecution's expert

18 reports, four of them, are filed officially, and the Defence responded

19 that they are going to -- that they wish to cross-examine all of them.

20 And I think that concludes the Status Conference for today. And I was

21 informed that the next Status Conference, the deadline for it is the 21st

22 of January next year. I am going to have it on Thursday, 20th of January,

23 if the courtroom is available, but I will let you know. That is the time

24 that we got in our hand the brief from the Defence. The hearing is

25 adjourned.

Page 449

1 ---Whereupon the Status Conference

2 adjourned at 3.29 p.m.