21 November 2011

Day 57 - Court Report 15 November 2011

Today a school group attends the trial. The judge declines more applications to hear defence witnesses with the usual standard arguments: the address was not clear, it would cost too much, it is unclear, whether the witness would be prepared to travel to Hamburg, or if interviewing someone on the phone the court couldn't be sure who they were talking to. The defence points out that the court did not have these reservations when trying to track down the Sri Lankan crew member of the Taipan. The judge spoke to the wife of the witness, without knowing for sure who they were talking to. The defence accuse the court of not wanting to hear any witnesses the defence puts forward and that the court was leaving it up to the defence alone to establish facts.
One of the lawyers for the three under-age defendants applies for a severance of the case against the three from the adults because the remainder of the proceedings didn't affect the three and that they were suffering psychologically from the long time they've been on remand. However, the lawyers of the two others reserve their decision whether or not to join this application. This prompts the lawyer of another (adult) accused to ask for severance of his case as well, because his client had already admitted being involved in an act of piracy. The prosecution opposes both motions.

The lawyer of another accused apply to have two academics heard, one from the University of Mogadishu, the other from the Asia-Africa-Institute at the Hamburg University.