Testifying at the trial of Radovan Karadzic, Tomasz Blaszczyk, Hague Prosecution investigator, says he personally took over the materials confiscated in the apartment of Ratko Mladicâ€™s wife, adding he was responsible for transferring them to the Hague Tribunal.
Blaszczyk explained that the Ministry of Internal Affairs, MUP, of Serbia searched Bosiljka Mladicâ€™s apartment in December 2008 and February this year, saying he personally took over the materials that were confiscated during the course of the search, and transferred them to the Hague.
â€œThe material was in my possession and I was the only one who had access to it from the moment I received it from the War Crimes Prosecution in Belgrade until I handed it over to the Evidence Section at the Hague,â€ Blaszczyk explained.
The Hague investigator said that Manojlo Milovanovic, former Deputy to Ratko Mladic, confirmed that 17 confiscated diaries had been personally handwritten by Mladic.
â€œGeneral Milovanovic had enough time to review the scanned diaries. He confirmed that most pages contained notes handwritten by Ratko Mladic. We consider this sufficient, because he worked with Mladic on a daily basis and attended most of the meetings, so he was familiar with his handwriting,â€ Blaszczyk explained.
Mladic, former Commander of the Republika Srpska Army, VRS, Main Headquarters, has been on the run for more than ten years. The Hague Prosecution charges him, among other things, with participation in a joint criminal enterprise, together with Radovan Karadzic and other Bosnian Serb leaders, with an aim of persecution the non-Serbian population.
The trial of Karadzic, former President of Republika Srpska and Supreme Commander of VRS, who is charged with genocide, crimes against humanity and violation of the laws and customs of war committed from 1992 to 1995, began before the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, ICTY, at the Hague in October last year.
While it examined witness Blaszczyk, the Hague Prosecution presented several video recordings taken during the course of the war, showing Ratko Mladic writing down notes in various notebooks. The witness said those were the same notebooks found in Bosiljka Mladicâ€™s apartment.
During the course of cross-examination Karadzic asked the witness if he was familiar with the fact that human rights of Hague Tribunal indicteesâ€™ families were violated and if he was aware of â€œthe arbitrariness of investigatorsâ€â€. Blaszczyk responded by saying he did â€œnot have information about it, except for the information published by the mediaâ€.
Karadzic did not deny the authenticity of Mladicâ€™s handwriting, accepting the fact these were wartime diaries, but he said the translation into English was â€œincompleteâ€.
â€œMladicâ€™s notes and sentences are not complete. I can see the translation was not always done properly. We shall have to solve many issues, as many misunderstandings could emerge from short, syntactically incorrect notes,â€ the indictee said.
The next hearing is due to take place on September 6, following a two-week break, approved by the Trial Chamber in order for Karadzic to be able to review the materials and evidence found in the apartment of Ratko Mladicâ€™s wife.
Trial Chamber Chairman O-Gon Kwon said a status conference, at which the parties would discuss â€œthe past course of the trial and the ways for more expeditious trial managementâ€, would be held on September 3 this year.