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2011

Workshop on The relationship between the police and the public prosecution according to the changes in the new Law on criminal procedure

This workshop was organized and conducted by the Coalition “All for Fair Trials” in cooperation with the Academy for judges and prosecutors as part of the Corruption Trial Monitoring Programme supported by the EU Delegation in the Republic of Macedonia and the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

At 06 and 07 December, 2011 at the Academy of Judges and Prosecutors workshop was held with representatives of the relevant judicial authorities working in the field of corruption and organized crime on subject “The relationship between the police and the public prosecution according to the changes in the new Law on criminal procedure (Comparative experiences with the Republic of Croatia)”.

Present were judges from the criminal classes of the Macedonian judicial system, lawyers, prosecutors from the primary and senior public prosecution, prosecutors from the Public Prosecutor for prosecution of organized crime and corruption, officials from the Ministry of Interior (CSOSK), from the Public Revenue and Customs Administration.

As external expert participated Mr. Dragan Novosel – First Deputy Public Prosecutor of the Republic of Croatia, while domestic lecturers were Mr. Marko Zvrlevski – Public Prosecutor of the Basic Public Prosecutor’s Office Skopje, president of the Association of Public Prosecutors of the Republic of Macedonia and Mr. Mitko Cavkov – Head to combat organized and serious crime CSOSK within the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Republic of Macedonia.

Coalition “All For Fair Trials” – 08.12.2011

Workshop on Settlement of guilt in criminal proceedings

On 28.11.2011 and 29.11.2011 in the premises of the Academy for Judges and Public Prosecutors second workshop was held with representatives of the relevant judicial authorities working in the field of corruption and organized crime on the subject “Settlement of guilt in criminal proceedings.”

This workshop was organized and conducted by the Coalition “All for Fair Trials” in cooperation with the Academy for judges and public prosecutors as a part of the project monitoring of court cases related to corruption (Corruption Trial Monitoring Programme), supported by the EU Delegation in the Republic of Macedonia and the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

The role of external expert was given to Mr. Luka Ferero – Criminal Court judge in Torino, Italy, while the Professor of Law Faculty – Skopje Gordana Buzarovska and the lawyer Jakim Naumov contributed as domestic lecturers. Representatives of all relevant judicial authorities in the country, judges of the criminal department of the Macedonian judicial system, lawyers, as well as prosecutors from the primary and senior public prosecutor, prosecutors from the Public Prosecutor for prosecution of organized crime and corruption were present.

Coalition “All For Fair Trials” – 30.11.2011

Workshop on Definition of criminal association / separation from the notion of a group, gang or other criminal organization

The workshop was attended by 55 participants, representatives of: the Supreme Court of the Republic of Macedonia, Skopje Appellate Court, AC Bitola, AC Stip, Basic Court Skopje I, Public Prosecutor of the Republic of Macedonia, Gostivar Higher Public Prosecutor, HPP Skopje, HPP Stip, Primary Public Prosecutor for Organized crime, Council of Public prosecutors, Ministry of Justice, Delegation of the European Union, American Embassy, OPDAT and of course representatives of the organizers. The judge Aneta Arnaudovska, director of the Academy for judges and public prosecutors and MA Nenad Zhivanovski, executive director of the Coalition “All for Fair Trials” had the opening/welcoming speech. For better visibility the Academy split to the audience printed form of the reference materials that teachers have used for the workshop, related to topics listed on the agenda. After being introduced, the lecturers presented the agenda of today’s workshop, after what Mr. Abdulakim Saljiu, judge of the Supreme Court of the Republic had a presentation on “Legislation and case law of the Republic of Macedonia”.

At the beginning of the his presentation he stressed that because of the sensitivity of the topic of today’s workshop, that has been elaborated on several seminars, the organizer had in mind the fact that the Croats ahead in this respect and did not hide the pleasure that among the lecturers was Dr. M. Marin Mrchela judge Supreme Court of the Republic of Croatia and a representative for Republic of Croatia in the Group of States against Corruption (GRECO) at the Council of Europe.

Coalition “All For Fair Trials” – 06.06.2011

2010

Workshop on The relationship between the police and the public prosecution according to the changes in the new Law on criminal procedure

This workshop was organized and conducted by the Coalition “All for Fair Trials” in cooperation with the Academy for judges and prosecutors as part of the Corruption Trial Monitoring Programme supported by the EU Delegation in the Republic of Macedonia and the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

At 06 and 07 December, 2011 at the Academy of Judges and Prosecutors workshop was held with representatives of the relevant judicial authorities working in the field of corruption and organized crime on subject “The relationship between the police and the public prosecution according to the changes in the new Law on criminal procedure (Comparative experiences with the Republic of Croatia)”.

Present were judges from the criminal classes of the Macedonian judicial system, lawyers, prosecutors from the primary and senior public prosecution, prosecutors from the Public Prosecutor for prosecution of organized crime and corruption, officials from the Ministry of Interior (CSOSK), from the Public Revenue and Customs Administration.

As external expert participated Mr. Dragan Novosel – First Deputy Public Prosecutor of the Republic of Croatia, while domestic lecturers were Mr. Marko Zvrlevski – Public Prosecutor of the Basic Public Prosecutor’s Office Skopje, president of the Association of Public Prosecutors of the Republic of Macedonia and Mr. Mitko Cavkov – Head to combat organized and serious crime CSOSK within the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Republic of Macedonia.

Coalition “All For Fair Trials” – 08.12.2011

Workshop on Settlement of guilt in criminal proceedings

On 28.11.2011 and 29.11.2011 in the premises of the Academy for Judges and Public Prosecutors second workshop was held with representatives of the relevant judicial authorities working in the field of corruption and organized crime on the subject “Settlement of guilt in criminal proceedings.”

This workshop was organized and conducted by the Coalition “All for Fair Trials” in cooperation with the Academy for judges and public prosecutors as a part of the project monitoring of court cases related to corruption (Corruption Trial Monitoring Programme), supported by the EU Delegation in the Republic of Macedonia and the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

The role of external expert was given to Mr. Luka Ferero – Criminal Court judge in Torino, Italy, while the Professor of Law Faculty – Skopje Gordana Buzarovska and the lawyer Jakim Naumov contributed as domestic lecturers. Representatives of all relevant judicial authorities in the country, judges of the criminal department of the Macedonian judicial system, lawyers, as well as prosecutors from the primary and senior public prosecutor, prosecutors from the Public Prosecutor for prosecution of organized crime and corruption were present.

Coalition “All For Fair Trials” – 30.11.2011

Workshop on Definition of criminal association / separation from the notion of a group, gang or other criminal organization

The workshop was attended by 55 participants, representatives of: the Supreme Court of the Republic of Macedonia, Skopje Appellate Court, AC Bitola, AC Stip, Basic Court Skopje I, Public Prosecutor of the Republic of Macedonia, Gostivar Higher Public Prosecutor, HPP Skopje, HPP Stip, Primary Public Prosecutor for Organized crime, Council of Public prosecutors, Ministry of Justice, Delegation of the European Union, American Embassy, OPDAT and of course representatives of the organizers. The judge Aneta Arnaudovska, director of the Academy for judges and public prosecutors and MA Nenad Zhivanovski, executive director of the Coalition “All for Fair Trials” had the opening/welcoming speech. For better visibility the Academy split to the audience printed form of the reference materials that teachers have used for the workshop, related to topics listed on the agenda. After being introduced, the lecturers presented the agenda of today’s workshop, after what Mr. Abdulakim Saljiu, judge of the Supreme Court of the Republic had a presentation on “Legislation and case law of the Republic of Macedonia”.

At the beginning of the his presentation he stressed that because of the sensitivity of the topic of today’s workshop, that has been elaborated on several seminars, the organizer had in mind the fact that the Croats ahead in this respect and did not hide the pleasure that among the lecturers was Dr. M. Marin Mrchela judge Supreme Court of the Republic of Croatia and a representative for Republic of Croatia in the Group of States against Corruption (GRECO) at the Council of Europe.

Coalition “All For Fair Trials” – 06.06.2011

2009

Press release

The Human Rights Support Project demands efficient investigation into the case of Dobre Trajkoski

The Human Rights Support Project implemented jointly by the Coalition All for Fair Trials, Izbor of Strumica, Arka of Kumanovo, Centre for Democratic Development of Tetovo, and Centre for Civil Initiative of Prilep demands that MoI and the Sector for Internal Control and Professional Standards carry out efficient investigation into the case of Dobre Trajkoski of Prilep, who claims to have been brutally beaten by police officers.

The civil associations within the Human Rights Support Project fiercely condemn acts of use of force by police officers reminding that:

  • The international standards limit the use of force by law enforcement officials, where force may be used only if that is necessary and to the minimal possible extent depending on the circumstances.
  • The use of force which inflicts severe physical or psychological pain by state authorities in order to punish or obtain a confession is, according to international acts, an act of torture which requires strict sanctioning of perpetrators.
  • The police may limit the fundamental human rights and freedoms only in conditions and procedure laid down by the Constitution of the Republic of Macedonia and the law. When exercising police powers, the police officer shall be obligated to act humanely and to respect the dignity, reputation and honour of the persons as well as their basic human rights and freedoms (Article 32 of the Law on Police).

Concurrently the organizations invite the person who claims to have been brutally beaten by police officers to call at the free telephone number 0800 11 333 and report the case, and inform him that free legal assistance may be provided as well as financial assistance for medical documentation to confirm the injuries inflicted as well as the manner in which they were inflicted.

The implementation of the project is supported by the Foundation Open Society Institute – Macedonia and the United Nations Voluntary Fund for Victims of Torture.

www.hrsp.org.mk

Coalition “AllFor Fair Trials” – 25.11.2009

Press release

The Human Rights Support Project demands that the police carry out efficient investigation into the accusations of journalist Miomir Serafinovikj

The Human Rights Support Project demands that the police carry out efficient investigation into the accusations thrown by journalist Miomir Serafinovikj, according to whom there are suspicions that police officers have violated primary and secondary legislative acts. According to the journalist’s statement the police officer has refused to present his police ID card, wanted to apprehend him in a police station and attempted aggressively to carry him into an unmarked police vehicle.

Such behaviour on the part of the police officer raises suspicion about possible police abuse and the Sector for Internal Control and Professional Standards is obligated to act upon such findings immediately. Although the superintendant of the Kumanovo police instructed journalist Miomir Serafinovikj to file a written complaint to the SICPS, according to the Rulebook on the Operations of the Sector, this body acts upon findings, information and data that it arrives at independently.

On behalf of the Human Rights Support Project, which provides free legal assistance to citizens who complain about police abuse, we would like to stress that:

  • Law enforcement officers shall respect and protect human dignity and shall respect and safeguard the human rights of all human beings (Code of Conduct, Article 7)
  • When a police officer exercises police powers in civil clothing, he/she shall be obligated to present his police ID card first (Article 33, paragraph 2 of the Law on Police)
  • The police may limit the fundamental human rights and freedoms only in conditions and procedure laid down by the Constitution of the Republic of Macedonia and the law. When exercising police powers, the police officer shall be obligated to act humanely and to respect the dignity, reputation and honour of the persons as well as their basic human rights and freedoms (Article 32 of the Law on Police)
  • The police officer shall be obligated to notify the person of the reasons for checking his/her identity (Article 38, paragraph 3 of the Law on Police)
  • A person may be apprehended on the basis of a written warrant issued by a competent court (Article 46, Law on Police)
  • Apprehension without a written warrant may be carried out when it is necessary to establish the identity or when the person is caught performing a criminal act or committing an offence with elements of violence (Article 47 of the Law on Police)

In such a case it is necessary that the SICPS acts urgently in order to examine whether the legal provisions have been violated by the police officer, and to punish him/her if that is concluded.

The Human Rights Support Project is implemented by the Coalition “All for Fair Trials”, Roma Rights Forum – Arka of Kumanovo, Centre for Democratic Development of Tetovo, Izbor of Strumica and Centre for Civil Initiative of Prilep.

The implementation of the project is supported by the Foundation Open Society Institute – Macedonia and the United Nations Voluntary Fund for Victims of Torture.

Free telephone number 0800 11 333 www.hrsp.org.mk

Coalition “AllFor Fair Trials” – 17.07.2009

International Day in Support of Victims of Torture

Press release

The Human Rights Support Project, which is jointly implemented by the civil associations “Centre for Democratic Development” of Tetovo, “Roma Rights Forum – Arka” of Kumanovo, “Centre for Civil Initiative” of Prilep, “Izbor” of Strumica and the Coalition “All for Fair Trials”, provides free legal assistance to citizens who consider themselves to be victims of police abuse or torture and it is being implemented in 2009 too.

On the occasion of the International Day in Support of Victims of Torture (26 June) the project would like to inform the public about the cases of torture registered in the first half of 2009 and to condemn the long proceedings for exercising justice for potential victims.

Main findings:

  • In the first half of 2009 7 cases were registered where citizens complained about police torture.
  • Of the cases registered, 1 was perpetrated in 2007, 3 in the second half of 2008 and 3 in 2009. Regarding the case perpetrated in 2007, the person who considers himself/herself to be a torture victim has demanded court proceedings monitoring.
  • Of all the cases registered, 8 citizens complained about physical torture by inflicting bodily injuries, whereas one citizen complained about psychological torture by the police.
  • Of the cases registered, 3 fall within Skopje area, 2 within Prilep area, 1 within Kumanovo area and 1 within Strumica area.
  • In 2009 there are still cases in the Basic Public Prosecutors’ Office with no resolution whatsoever, as follows: Case SK 034, where criminal charges were pressed for torture in 2006 and the case is still in the phase of investigation, Case SK 070 – Although the Basic Public Prosecutors’ Office has rejected the criminal charges, the High Public Prosecutors’ Office returns the procedure upon a request submitted to examine the lawfulness of the decision, so an investigation has been initiated for a case where the person complains about torture inflicted in 2008, Case SK 076 – in March 2009 a claim for criminal liability was brought for a criminal act of torture and there is still no response from the Public Prosecutors’ Office. On this case there is cooperation with the Ombudsman, and the project has covered the costs for court and medical expert opinion, which has shown a higher number of punches than the investigation carried out by MoI, Case SK 075 – a case of beating a juvenile in 2007 and the proceedings are ongoing, Case SR 023 – the court proceedings are ongoing since 2006 and the persons complain about torture with physical and psychological injuries.
  • Based on the data presented, one may conclude that in 2009 citizens complain about torture by the police and although internal investigation rejects complaints as having no credible grounds for most of the cases, the medical documentation shows that more punches have been inflicted in order to punish or obtain certain information and findings that are of interest to the police.
  • The Basic Public Prosecutors’ Office acts slowly and inefficiently and some cases have no resolution although they were initiated in the period 2006-2007.
  • On one case (SK 070) the BPPO has made a decision to reject the criminal charges upon the request of the victim for fear there might be further consequences by the police, whereas it is a case of a criminal act prosecuted ex officio. After a claim had been brought to examine the lawfulness of the decision, the High Public Prosecutors’ Office returned the case for reviewing.

Main recommendations:

  • Government institutions should send a clear signal for zero tolerance of police torture.
  • Efficient access to justice should be provided to citizens who complain about police torture.
  • A clear definition should be developed of what use of force means in cases of arrest or prosecution of suspects.
  • The Basic Public Prosecutors’ Offices should implement investigations into police torture efficiently and timely and act in accordance with the legal grounds when prosecuting ex officio.
  • A specialised department for police abuse and torture should be formed within the PPO to efficiently and quickly act upon criminal charges received.
  • The court should respect the right to a trial within a reasonable time, without unnecessary adjournments of hearings.

Coalition “AllFor Fair Trials” – 26.06.2009

Press release

The Human Rights Support Project condemns the pressure put on the citizens of the Municipality of Petrovec by the special mobile unit ALPHI

The Human Rights Support Project condemns the pressure, intimidation and ill-treatment exerted by the police unit Alphi on the citizens of the Municipality of Petrovec.

According to the statements in the media intimidation aims at making the citizens vote for a certain candidate of a political party for a mayor of the Municipality of Petrovec. Intimidation was accompanied by blackmail where the citizens would lose their jobs unless they give their vote to the candidate in question. This pressure and intimidation were exerted in the Skopje villages of Petrovec, Dolno Konjare, Ognjanci and Rzhanichino.

The project fiercely condemns police officers’ direct involvement in election activities through pressure, ill-treatment and intimidation of the citizens of the Municipality of Petrovec.

It also invites all citizens who suffered intimidation and ill-treatment by police forces to report it at the free telephone number 0800 11 333, where they would be provided with free legal assistance.

The Human Rights Support Project is implemented by the Coalition “All for Fair Trials”, Roma Rights Forum – Arka of Kumanovo, Centre for Democratic Development of Tetovo, Izbor of Strumica and Centre for Civil Initiative of Prilep.

The implementation of the project is supported by the Foundation Open Society Institute – Macedonia and the United Nations Voluntary Fund for Victims of Torture.

Coalition “AllFor Fair Trials” – 01.04.2009

Press release

The Human Rights Support Project condemns police violence towards the Roma from the Bitola settlement Bair

The Human Rights Support Project condemns police violence towards the Roma from the Bitola settlement Bair, where both women and children have been injured.

The Bitola police have made statements for the media saying that a throng of Roma had attacked the police officers who were attempting to deprive a drug dealer of his liberty in the settlement Bair, however, it is obvious that in this event force was used excessively, particularly for women and children. The police could have crushed their resistance in a passive manner.

The project fiercely condemns the way of inflicting injuries by using weapons: one of the women was hit with a gun in the head and pushed to the ground.

The project is working actively on the case by registering the victims of police violence towards the Roma of the settlement Bair in Bitola.

At the same time it invites all other participants in this event to report police violence at the telephone of the Centre for Civil Initiative 048/400-480 or the free telephone number 0800 11 333, where they will be provided with free legal assistance as well as financial assistance for medical documentation.

The Centre for Civil Initiative of Prilep covers the region of South-West Macedonia in the area of free legal assistance provision, whereas apart from it, the following also take part in the project: Civil Association Arka of Kumanovo, Coalition “All for Fair Trials” of Skopje, Centre for Democratic Development of Tetovo and Izbor of Strumica.

The implementation of the project is supported by the Foundation Open Society Institute – Macedonia and the United Nations Voluntary Fund for Victims of Torture.

Coalition “AllFor Fair Trials” – 27.02.2009

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