Institute for War and Peace Reporting | Giving Voice, Driving Change

Judges Want Seselj Indictment Slashed

(TU No 467, 11-Sep-06)
The judges said that the prosecutors should report back to them by 21 September on how they intend to shorten the case.

Seselj, leader of the Serbian Radical Party, has been charged with crimes allegedly committed in Bosnia, Croatia and Serbia from 1991 until 1995. He is accused of participating in a joint criminal enterprise whose purpose was the "permanent forcible removal" of non-Serbs from "approximately one-third of the territory of Croatia, large parts of Bosnia and from parts of Vojvodina in the Republic of Serbia", in order to make these areas "part of a new Serb-dominated state".

The trial chamber noted that the current indictment contains 14 counts relating to ten different municipalities, with testimony from approximately 100 witnesses. Since the scope of the accusations indicate that the trial could last for a very long time, the judges asked the prosecution "to propose means of reducing the scope of the indictment by at least one-third".

If the prosecution fails to do so, judges may implement a rule adopted on June 30 this year allowing them to order the prosecutors not to bring evidence on some of the counts in the indictment.

Seselj's trial should start in October.

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