APPEAL TO THE ICTY PROSECUTOR SERGE BRAMMERTZ TO START THE REVISION OF THE PROCESS AGAINST GENERAL PERISIC

267 Signatures Goal: 1,000

Untill 28 February 2014 there is a possibility for the Prosecutor of Yugoslavia Tribunal in The Hague to request the revision of the process against general Momcilo Perisic. The decission of Sierra Leone Tribunal in the case against Charles Taylor shows that theAppeals Chamber in Perisic case has misinterpreted the law.

With this petition we will urge Mr Serge Brammertz to request the revision of the case Perisic.

(see also below, legal analyses by Marko Attila Hoare)

In the case of Perisic, the essence of the disagreement between the Trial Chamber majority and the Appeals Chamber majority was that the first considered that ‘under the VRS’s strategy there was no clear distinction between military warfare against BiH forces and crimes against civilians/and or persons not taking active part in hostilities’, while the latter argued that ‘the VRS was not an organisation whose actions were criminal per se; instead, it was an army fighting a war’, albeit one that also engaged in criminal activities. Thus, the Trial Chamber considered that there was no clear distinction between the VRS’s lawful and its criminal actions, while the Appeals Chamber considered that there was.

Furthermore, the Trial Chamber ruled that though it could not be proven that the military assistance provided by Perisic to the VRS was specifically intended by him to support its criminal as opposed to its legal activities, nevertheless, since he clearly knew that his assistance would be used for criminal activities at Sarajevo and Srebrenica, as well as for legal military purposes, he was therefore guilty of aiding and abetting its criminal activities. The Appeals Chamber, by contrast, ruled that since it could not be proven that that he intended his military assistance to be used for criminal as opposed to legal military purposes, he could not be held to have criminal intent and therefore be held culpable for aiding and abetting the VRS’s crimes.

In other words, there is little disagreement between the two Chambers regarding facts of the case (so far as the Bosnian part of it is concerned) but principally over what conclusion should be drawn from them. The disagreement is not equivalent to that between the Trial Chamber and Appeals Chamber in the case of Gotovina and Markac, when the two chambers fundamentally disagreed over what the facts were; i.e. over whether the Croatian Army had deliberately shelled civilian targets with the intent of bringing about the removal of the Serb population from the so-called Krajina region. In the case of Perisic, the Appeals Chamber was not throwing out an unsafe conviction based upon a highly spurious interpretation of events, as was the case with the acquittal of Gotovina and Markac. Rather, it was expressing a different judgement on the nature of culpability to that of the Trial Chamber.

In this disagreement, my own sympathies are entirely with the Trial Chamber, and I applaud the dissent from the Appeals Chamber majority opinion of Judge Liu Daqun, who argued that by acquitting Perisic, the Appeals Chamber was setting the bar too high for convictions on grounds of aiding and abetting. However, personal sympathies aside and on the understanding that judges are supposed to be wholly impartial, the conclusions of either Chamber could legitimately be drawn from the facts. Unfortunately, the more conservative type of conclusion of the Appeals Chamber is the one I would have predicted judges at the ICTY usually to reach. My colleague Florian Bieberhas made the reasonable point that ‘arguing that not all [the VRS's] activities were criminal is about as convincing as stating that the Mafia is not only involved in criminal activities and thus supporting it does not mean that one is “aiding and abetting” criminal activities.’ Following that analogy, Perisic could be compared to a powerful businessman who donates money, vehicles and properties to a charity known to be acting as a front for Mafia activities. Even if he clearly knew the charity’s true purpose, convicting him might not be so easy for the courts. Al Capone was, after all, only convicted for tax evasion.

This brings us to the ultimate reason for Perisic’s acquittal: the Prosecution’s case against him, resting as it did on a model of culpability that was judicially controversial, was not a strong one.The Prosecution was unable to prove his intent to commit crime, or that the assistance he provided to the VRS was intended to further its crimes. It was unable to link him directly to any specific crime. It could merely prove that he aided and abetted an army – the VRS – that he knew was engaging in criminal activities, but which was also engaging in lawful military activities.

http://greatersurbiton.wordpress.com/2013/03/05/why-was-momcilo-perisic-acquitted/





1

Highlight

January 25
We are now live!

Is there a cause you really care about? Start a free petition like this one and make a real difference.

  • Omer Softic
    Omer Softic Belgium
    Feb 05, 2014
    Feb 05, 2014
    Denying the truth about Serbian involvement in genocide in Bosnia is = to saying there was no holocaust or Jasenovac. We need the truth to move on.
  • Rille Hashimagic
    Feb 03, 2014
    Feb 03, 2014
    ratne zlocince i profitere na dozivotnu robiju...
  • Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Feb 03, 2014
    Feb 03, 2014
    No comment
  • Sabina Brankovic Pašić
    Sabina Brankovic Pašić Bosnia and Herzegovina, Sarajevo
    Feb 03, 2014
    Feb 03, 2014
    nikad nije kasno i nikad nije malo , što god da se učini u ime žrtava genocida u BH
See More
267

Signatures

  • 3 years ago
    Denijal Kararic United States
    3 years ago
  • 3 years ago
    thomas sacha Germany
    3 years ago
  • 3 years ago
    sacha zumreta
    3 years ago
  • 3 years ago
    Vesna Nenadic Serbia
    3 years ago
  • 3 years ago
    Alison Sluiter Bosnia and Herzegovina
    3 years ago
  • 3 years ago
    Omer Softic Belgium
    3 years ago
  • 3 years ago
    vera Croatia
    3 years ago
  • 3 years ago
    Ermin Mehmedspahic Bosnia and Herzegovina
    3 years ago
  • 3 years ago
    samir Bosnia and Herzegovina
    3 years ago
  • 3 years ago
    Rille Hashimagic Sweden
    3 years ago
  • 3 years ago
    avdic bego Austria
    3 years ago
  • 3 years ago
    Zlatan Mujagic Netherlands
    3 years ago
  • 3 years ago
    Sabina Brankovic Pašić Bosnia and Herzegovina
    3 years ago
  • 3 years ago
    Mujaga Ahmeljinović Bosnia and Herzegovina
    3 years ago
  • 3 years ago
    Izet Mujkanovic Germany
    3 years ago
See More