Discussion: How a person skipped a trial on murder charges

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Justice in Kosovo broadcast a programme about how someone accused of attempted murder was released by the police without charge.

Questions covered included: What happened to farmer Rifat Thaçi on the day he decided to go out for a picnic with his family? Why did the defendant, 72-year-old Ramë Rama, allegedly try to kill Mr. Thaçi? How it is possible that even after such a serious crime, the prosecution released Mr. Rama from detention?

What is the opinion of the parties involved in this process? When the prosecution failed, was the imam of the village successful in resolving the conflict? Finally, what did the chief district prosecutor for Mitrovica say about this decision?

To discuss these and related issues, researcher Petrit Kryeziu interviewed:

  • Rifat Thaçi,
  • Hajrie Thaçi,
  • Izet Hajrizi and
  • Avdyl Ramaj – the injured parties;

  • Fadil Idrizi – the village imam;

  • Shyqyri Syla – chief prosecutor from the District Prosecution in Mitrovica; and

  • Kadri Begolli – acting director of the Office of the Disciplinary Council.

The report started with Mr. Thaçi, who spoke about what happened during a picnic with his family, which turned into a crime scene: when they arrived at the planned place for picnic, they encountered a barrier fence. Mr. Thaçi broke the fence in order to walk across land belonging to his friend, where trouble broke out.

Contrary to Mr. Thaçi, Mr. Rama claims that the fence that was broken was in his land. A fight broke out, which ended when Mr. Rama fired two bullets, injuring Thaçi in the leg and head.

This case was passed on to the judicial bodies in Mitrovica. The suspect was put in detention. The district prosecutor proposed extending detention for two months, but after ten days the same prosecutor asked to substitute house arrest for detention, on the grounds that the parties had settled the dispute between themselves.

Regarding this, Mr. Thaçi said “I don’t know how the prosecutor concluded that we have agreed with Rama. Who said to her that we have agreed? Due to Rama’s release, my family feels victimised again. In order to avoid fights and troubles, we have moved here, to Prishtina!”

Similarly, Mr. Hajrizi said “I don’t know what kind of prosecutor this is, who releases a person who has committed such a crime, and at the same time points out that the families have agreed – which did not happen at all.”

“I have tried to help these two families reach reconciliation. However, after a month, I did not contend with it any longer,” said Mr. Idrizi, a village imam.

Mr. Syla said “there was a technical mistake made by the prosecutor, who asked to substitute the [detention] measure, because the sentence that highlighted the fact that the families had agreed was left in the computer from previous proposals.”

He went on to say that “this mistake is nothing compared to the [other] mistakes that happen due to the working conditions within the prosecutor[’s offices].”

Video: http://www.jetanekosove.com/drejtesia/959/Alb