3 January 2013: Tribunal 2 Daily Summary

Cases heard during session:       
1. Qader Molla – 
Hearing of Defense Application for Reconsideration of Denial of Right to Call Additional Witnesses
2. Ali Ahsan Mohammed Mujahid 
– Cross-examination of Prosecution Witness #11
3. Muhammad Kamaruzzaman   – Hearing of Application for retrial

  • Qader Molla: Defense counsel requested a later hearing date for the review application filed earlier on behalf of Kader Mullah seeking reconsideration of the tribunal’s decision denying permission to produce additional defense witnesses. This request was immediately denied orally, along with a request for two hours of time to enable the Senior Counsel to appear. The Tribunal required the Defense to make its submissions instantaneously. The Tribunal then rejected the review application reasoning that the ICT rules of procedure contain no provision to allow additional witnesses. Only the Prosecution has the power to call additional witnesses. The Tribunal opined that the Defense’s application was the same as one that had been rejected earlier and that the Defense was attempting to cause delays in the proceeding. The rejection was accompanied by a sanction of 10,000 BDT imposed on the Defense for submitting repetitive applications.
  • Mujahid:  Prosecution witness PW-11, Mr Foyez Uddin Ahmad was cross examined by the defense counsel, whose core line of questioning was aimed at attacking the reliability and credibility of the witness’s testimony, suggesting that the testimony is fabricated upon the coaching by the Prosecution and that he neither knew the accused, nor was he capable of recognizing him.
  • Kamaruzzaman: The Court heard at length the application filed on behalf of Muhammad Kamaruzzam to recall the order taking cognizance of charges against him and for a full and complete retrial. The argument for retrial was based on the allegation that the Tribunal has the appearance of being biased due to the leak of the Skype and email conversations between the former Chairman of Tribunal 1 and an outside legal scholar, Dr. Ziauddin of Brussels. The Defense supported their argument that the appearance of bias is grounds for retrial by relying on international precedent.  The court denied the application and firmly stated that there was no such possibility of biasness. The Tribunal further condemned the content of the Skype and email conversations and passed an order suo moto  requiring Dr. Ziaduddin to explain, within 30 days from the receipt of this order, why contempt proceedings shall not be brought against him for his Skype conversations with the former chairman of ICT-1.  Prosecution witness PW-16 who was present expressed his inability to give testimony on that day due to his sudden illness.