13 February 2011

Trial Suspended

Due to illness of one of the defendants, the hearing has been suspended. It is expected that the hearing will resume on 21 February 2011.

Report from Day 16

Day 16 – 02 February 2011
Military Secrets

Hans Lodder, Captain of the Dutch frigate “Tromp”, who gave evidence on 26 January is back for cross examination.

First, the judge wants to know how much ammunition was used. Lodder is rather vague – yes, it's recorded somewhere but he doesn't know. “Probably one small box” is all he is willing to say. And another 2 boxes from the helicopter.

The defence asks about the detention of the Somali men. It turns out they were constantly chained to the deck, unless they went to the toilet. At night they slept on a mattress, still chained with one hand to the deck.

These questions relate to the fact that one of the detainees managed to jump over board and had to be captured. The defence wants to know whether that was before or after the interrogation. The judge intervenes at the word interrogation. It was after the 'voluntary interview', that he jumped over board. It is revealed that officer de Vind, who gave evidence the day before, took part in the interviews, although he wasn't part of the team.

10 February 2011

Report from Day 15

Day 15 – 31 January 2011

The Dutch navy officer de Vind is giving evidence today. But the hearing starts late because the prisoner transport is stuck in traffic.

During all the previous court hearings several people had been sitting between the press bench and the public gallery, observing the proceedings. They are neither lawyers, nor court officials, nor prison guards. We have long suspected that they are non-uniformed police. Today they made sarcastic remarks about one of the defendants not having eaten for days. Then they ask us if we knew who the person was who called the judge an arsehole at the last hearing.  We're pretty sure now.