NOVEMBER 10 2011 22:18h
If the verdict was to be read to Ivo Sanader from the pages of Croatian gazettes, the one could say that the former PM is buried. The judge Ivan Turudic wouldn’t have much work to do, as the newspapers suggest, he only would have to read and justify the sentence and the executioner could already sharpen the ax. However, the impression from the first two days of a trial to the former PM for allegedly taking bribe from the Hypo bank (in order to arrange the deal so Croatia could take a loan from that very bank to buy the embassy), don’t imply everything is over. On the contrary.
The witnesses that were brought to the judge by the State Attorney on the first day of a trial, at the beginning of the spectacular trial process were far away from the spectacle and stringency. Not a single word was said by those witnesses who confirmed the theory of the State Attorney that Sanader snitched the first cash 17 years ago when he took advantage of circumstances. It is possible that everything was the same in detail as the accusation claims, but they should approve those statements in the courtroom. But, Bajic’s big opening didn’t imply trust that this would have happened, and the verdict without the evidence (that is about to be brought just because someone did something so the public expects he will be punished for the act) doesn’t compromise only the judge that decides on verdict but the entire legal state.
Therefore, not only Mladen Bajic did not show the firm foundations for the trial in Hypo affair during this grand opening of the process, but he allowed Sanader the absolute dominance over the selection of the first few witnesses. Ivo Sanader ruled the courtroom from his defendant’s seat as he was an emperor, not the man who will maybe grow old behind the bars. As very concentrated with the firm voice, he was psychically ‘’killing’’ the witnesses who were supposed to ‘’kill’’ him. That, of course, doesn’t mean that Sanader will finalize this trial for Hypo affair as a winner and as an unfairly accused but will take the righteous step out of the courtroom as a free man. But the last thing man could expect from the truly grand trial for the corruption of war profiteering, is for the presenters of ‘’public’’ to be so inferior compared to the man who robbed this nation, as people claim.
What can one bring out of it? Whether Mladen Bajic wasn’t completely prepared to enter the processes so he simply jiggles with the subject he has, whether he is making tactics and wants to leave the impression of un-prepared so the opponent could get a false confidence, and then, Bajic will beat him with some incredibly strong evidence (or witness) in the moment of the opponent highest strength.
Let’s get this straight; no one claims that Sanader is innocent and that he didn’t take the money. However, this crime has to be proved. If the State Attorney is going to keep lining the witnesses that Sanader will ‘’eat in one bite’’, the public, in the name of whom the Sate Attorney pressed charges, can only say it is a shame of every tax dime spent on that farce. If there is a public trial to the man for war profiteering, to a man who was the most powerful person not while ago, than the public representatives should be dominate, they should bite, line up the evidences and bring witnesses whose every word would be a bullet. Not vice versa.
There shouldn’t be some confused witnesses brought to the witnesses bench by the State Attorney at the very begging of a trial, as example, one confused and scared lady who once saw, many years ago, Sanader and the boss of the Hypo bank sat in the lobby of one hotel (in public) over a cup of coffee. What does that, for God’s sake, prove? Sanader verbally knocked her down, of course. Even someone less skillful would manage to do such thing. Or, why did they bring the former prime-minister Nikica Valentic as the witness of the State Attorney when they knew he could say that Sanader didn’t sign the contract with Hypo bank since he wasn’t authorized to do so as the deputy of the minister of foreign affairs. And the one who was authorized was his former boss, the minister of foreign affairs Mate Granic. Or this trial was arranged to Sanader just to force out the truth about Granic’s business?! Why on earth did Valentic testify in the case where they want to prove Sanader is the war profiteer? Or the statement of Sanader’s former adviser who said he had invited the boss of Hypo bank for a few times for a meeting with Sanader in the Ministry of foreign affairs. Does this prove Sanader got a provision, or as the matter of fact, bribe in order to arrange the great deal to that small bank of Koruska? Once more, this was not the defense of Ivo Sanader but logical examination that points out something was wrong in the approach of this very trial.
Although he is in a bad position, Sanader still leads the game, and this is exactly a situation Malden Bajic shouldn’t have allowed to happen. Things look schizophrenic. The newspapers publish articles on a daily bases where the reporters illegally quote the witnesses’ statements, presenting Sanader as the sleaziest guy ever, unscrupulous politician who manipulated even the parents of his own wife. Sanader has earned to end at gallows according to the newspapers’ headlines. However, those interpretations don’t stand in the courtroom. In the courtroom there should be evidence. Because if there is no evidence, Sanader would have point when saying how his right to a fair trial was violated and that he has been arbitrated by a political trial.