torsdag 27 januari 2011

"Del Ponte office destroyed evidence"

"Del Ponte office destroyed evidence"

27 January 2011 | 09:58 | Source: B92, Blic, Tanjug
BELGRADE -- An adviser to the current chief Hague Tribunal prosecutor says it was Carla Del Ponte's office that destroyed evidence in the Kosovo organ trade case.
The once yellow house near Burrel, painted white in the meantime (Blic)
The once yellow house near Burrel, painted white in the meantime (Blic)
"It would likely be easier had we kept the material. That was an unfortunate decision," Frederick Swinnen told Belgrade's Blic daily.

The media dubbed the investigation the Yellow House case, after one location in northern Albania described in Del Ponte's book published three years ago.

It was there that evidence into the alleged crimes that involved KLA's kidnapping of Serb and other civilians and removal of their vital organs was collected.

Council of Europe Rapporteur Dick Marty, whose report provided the basis for a resolution adopted this week, criticized the Hague Tribunal for destroying the evidence.

Swinnen said the order came in 2005 from the office of then chief Prosecutor Del Ponte, and that the material contained "several bottles and a number of syringes, which was photographed before it was destroyed".

According to him, the decision came once the Hague investigators "concluded the evidence could not be used and that it was impossible to find more witnesses".

Swinnen noted that he did not hold his current position at the time, and said the responsibility for destroying the evidence did not fall on Del Ponte. He also stated that the photographs of the evidence were given to the Serbian War Crimes Prosecution.

The Blic newspaper also claims in its report that Dick Marty has many pieces of evidence, but that he will not forward it or name of the witnesses until he has received guarantees that their lives will be protected.

"Marty is asking for guarantees for the security of the witnesses. He does not wish to reveal their names, so that they do not end up like witnesses in the case against Ramush Haradinaj, who paid with their lives for their readiness to testify. If Marty receives these guarantees, he is ready to personally take part in the investigation," claims the daily.

According to the article, the Swiss senator himself has been assigned "heavy security".

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