KLI: Fighting corruption is not treated as one of the priorities by the justice system

Monday 29 December, 2014

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Pristina, 26 December –On Friday,  Kosovo Law Institute (KLI) with the support from the British Embassy has organised a roundtable on the “Increasing the Efficiency of Prosecutorial System for Fighting Corruption” which has served to discuss the implementation of this Action Plan from the entry into force on  November 4, 2013 until September 30, 2014.

Mr. Betim Musliu – Executive Director of the KLI presented the report “Corruption in Kosovo 3: Comprehensive assessment report on the effectiveness of prosecutorial system in the implementation of the action plan in corruption cases”  with the findings, assessments and recommendations for the implementation of Action Plan. During the presentation of the report  Mr. Musliu said that the prosecutions until this reporting period have failed to meet even half of the objectives of the Action Plan to solve cases of corruption. “If we analyze the situation of unsolved cases from the beginning and at the end, it turns out that we have not moved at all … At the beginning on November 4th  2013, prosecutions had 516 unsolved cases with 1,682 persons, while on 30 September 2014 the remaining unsolved cases was around 575 with 1,613 persons. So we are talking about the same condition. “Musliu said the Basic Prosecutions in Pristina, Mitrovica and Special Prosecution of the Republic of Kosovo have failed to solve even half of cases registered Action Plan to 4 November 2014. Mr. Musliu said that the KLI has established indicators on Action Plan to measure the implementation of it. “This indicator is based on the measurement of cases that are registered on November 4, 2013 … Prosecutors from the effective date of the plan until September 30, 2014 have solved 251 cases of this category with a total of 751 persons or 45%. So half the cases have not been solved from the Action Plan “. The biggest concern, according Mr. Musliu, remains the culture of impunity in the justice system.”.Any decision of Prosecutorial Council to hold accountable those who have failed to implement the Action Plan is not being applied. This is the best indicator of willingness for prosecutions to fight corruption in Kosovo “.

Acting Chief Prosecutor of State, Mr. Syle Hoxha, said that Kosovo Prosecutorial Council (KPC) through the Memorandum of Cooperation with KLI for external monitoring and evaluation of the Action Plan has resulted in improved transparency and accountability of prosecutorial system. “Of course you can see a highly critical and constructive report on the results of the work of prosecutors in solving cases of corruption. Even we are not satisfied with these results and we will put our effort to implement the KLI’s recommendations to increase the effectiveness and accountability of prosecutorial system in combating corruption “. In this regard, Mr. Hoxha said that the Prosecutorial Council remains committed to enhance results in fighting corruption, always in close cooperation with other agencies and institutions that enforce the law in Kosovo.

Head of Kosovo Judicial Council, Mr. Enver Peci has praised the KLI’s report emphasizing that this critical report and other reports of KLI constantly helped the justice system in identifying problems and offering solutions. “Indeed these reports are critical but are very realistic about the situation in which the justice system is. I can tell you that we are constantly trying to address with priority cases of corruption, but more remains to be done “.

Highly appreciating the KLI’s report panelists and other participants discussed the findings and assessments of the KLI’s about the implementation of the Action Plan. Speeches for the assessment of the report and implementation of the Action Plan have continued with the Ms.Laura Pula- National Anti-Corruption Coordinator, Acting chief of the Special Prosecution of the Republic of Kosovo, Mrs. Sevdie Morina, all chief prosecutors of the Basic Prosecutions in Kosovo, Deputy Director General of the Kosovo Police, Mr. Naim Rexha, Director of Anti-Corruption Agency, Mr. Preteni, Director of the Office of Disciplinary Counsel, Mr. Zef Prendrecaj and others. Participants at the roundtable and for discussions were also representatives of Kosovo Prosecutorial Council, the Kosovo Judicial Council, the Kosovo Police, Civil Society, American Embassy in Kosovo, EU Office in Kosovo and OSCE.

The findings of the KLI’s report shows that with the entry into force of the Action Plan (4 November 2013), prosecutors have had to work 516 unsolved cases with 1,682 persons while the entry into force of the plan by the end of this reporting period (30 September 2014), prosecutors have managed to solve 251 cases with a total of 751 persons or 45%. Out of these cases solved, prosecutors have dismissed criminal charges or have ceased investigations to 431 persons or 58% of them and to 320 persons or 42% of them have been directly indicted, the indictment after investigation and have proposed the imposition of punitive orders.

 

Basic Prosecution in Pristina remains to be the prosecutiostn with weakest efficiency in fulfilling the obligations of the Action Plan. Basic Prosecution in Pristina has solved cases only of the 19% persons or only of 149 of 777  persons who have been registered in the Action Plan until November 4th 2013. However, compared to other prosecutions, the Basic Prosecution in Pristina has solved most of the cases for the reporting period (July, August, September, 2014), a total of 51 persons.After Pristina, leads the Basic Prosecution in Mitrovica with non- efficiency, who has solved 31% cases of persons or only cases of  44 from 141 persons that were registered on November 4, 2014. During this reporting period prosecution has solved cases of 8 persons. KLI  anyway takes into account working conditions as a objective reasons of this prosecution for these poor results for which the KLI has asked the Prosecutorial Council to improve working conditions of this prosecution but nothing has been done in this regard. Special Prosecution of Kosovo has not managed to solve even half of those registered persons at the beginning of the Action Plan. Out of 232 unsolved cases of persons that have been registered at the beginning of the Plan, Special Prosecution has reached to solve only 108 cases of persons or 47% of them. So, during the three months of the reporting period, Special Prosecution has solved one case of one person who remains as a solved case that  was registeredon the period until November 4th 2013.More than half of the cases of persons has managed to solve Basic Prosecution in Ferizaj from whichout of 126 persons has solved 84 or 67% them. For this reporting period has managed to solve only cases of  3 persons.Basic Prosecution in Gjakovaduring this period of three months didn’t solve any case that were registered until November 4, 2013, and by the 30 of Junethis prosecution has solved 81% of cases or 52 out of 64 persons as they were at the beginning of the Action Plan . Basic Prosecution in Prizren has also managed to solve 86% of cases, 151 out of 175 persons as it had in the beginning of the Action Plan. During the reporting period only 2 registered cases of persons were solved by November 4th 2013.Basic Prosecution in Peja has managed to solve 95% of cases or 82 out of 86 persons as it had at the beginning of the plan. During this reporting period prosecution has solved one case of one person.Basic Prosecution in Gjilan has managed to solve 100% of cases registered until November 4, 2013 in the Action Plan, solving all cases, namely 23 cases with 81 persons. KLI based on the monitoring of the plan, considers that the same until this period is not treated as a matter of absolute priority set in all prosecutions and this was the basis of the results achieved, as shown above.

In addition to solving cases, the National Anti-Corruption Coordinator and Chief Prosecutors have had a series other commitments, which have failed to meet.Also for this reporting period, the KLI has received and analyzed the prosecutorial legal acts (decisions to dismiss the criminal charges, decisions on termination of investigations and indictments). Limitation of corruption cases and placement cases contrary to the provisions and deadlines, inadequate criminal provisions and procedural criminal provisions are the main problems identified by the KLI analysts. The same problems have been identified by the internal mechanisms of KPC, who analyzed the same legal acts, which demonstrates that the expertise of the KLI has been accurate to be used for identifying problems and creating adequate criminal policies to increase efficiency and effectiveness in fighting corruption.

The report contains 17 recommendations for all institutions in charge on how to improve in order to solve cases of corruption, therefore properly to implement the Action Plan. The Action Plan to Increase the Efficiency of Prosecutorial System in Fighting Corruption is a result of the implementation of the Strategic Plan for inter-institutional cooperation in combating organized crime and corruption adopted by Kosovo Prosecutorial Council. KPC on December 27, 2013 has signed a Memorandum of Cooperation with Kosovo Law Institute, which monitors the prosecutorial system in the implementation of this plan.