Pristina’s District Court postponed without any explanation Tuesday's session in the Klecka case trial.
A Kosovo court was expected to decide on Tuesday whether the “Klecka case” can be sustained without the testimony of the key witness, which the defence counsels argue was taken illegally.
However, the hearing has been postponed without any official explanation.
Two years after he initiated the investigation, the Special Prosecutor of EU rule of law mission to Kosovo, EULEX, Maurizio Salustro, will have to explain to the court, whether the diaries of the deceased witness Agim Zogaj will continue to form the foundation of his case or if he has other evidence.
Sources from EULEX have unofficially told BIRN that the trial has been postponed because the panel of judges needed more time to assess Salustro’s response.
The source said that the trial should resume next week, “most probably on Monday.”
Ten former Kosovo Liberation Army fighters, including their commander Fatmir Limaj, have pleaded not guilty to charges of war crimes against Serbs and Albanians at the Klecka detention centre committed in 1999.
Limaj’s lawyer accused the prosecutor of having gathered all the evidence in the Klecka case illegally, and argued that Maurizio Salustro was not authorized to raid the house of his client for war crimes.
In April 2010, EULEX raided the ministry of transport during Fatmir Limaj’s tenure as minister. That investigation relates to road construction tenders issued between 2007 and 2009.
Limaj’s defence team claims that the prosecutor abused the legal process during the raid by confiscating photos of the war, and the military uniform of Fatmir Limaj, without a proper court warrant relating to the suspicion of war crimes.
The case, heard in front of Pristina’s District Court, rests mainly on the testimony of the deceased Zogaj, who killed himself last September in Germany.
Zogaj, known as “Witness X”, was a prison guard at the Klecka prison during the Kosovo war in 1999, and made notes in his diary about events there. The notes have provided the key testimony in the war crimes trial against his alleged commander Fatmir Limaj and nine other defendants.
Fatmir Limaj has already been tried and acquitted by the Hague Tribunal in 2007, for war crimes committed in another prison camp.
Pristina's District Court is expected to decide later this month whether or not the testimony of Agim Zogaj is relevant to the trial.
This article is Premium Content. In order to gain access to it, please login to your account below if you are already a Premium Subscriber, or subscribe to one of our Premium Content packages.
Our Premium Service gives you access to exclusive content published on Balkan Insight, including analyses, investigations, comments, interviews and more. Subscribe to Balkan Transitional Justice Premium or to Full Premium Access and get unparalleled in-depth coverage of the Western Balkans.
If you have trouble logging in or any other questions regarding you account, please contact us