''Mirno in dostojanstveno, vendar odločno in nepopustljivo''

Podpri odbor 2014

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Prvi shod Odbora 2014 pred sodiščem bo 12. oktobra!

13.09.2017

Dragi vztrajnice in vztrajniki! Prvi shod Odbora 2014 po počitnicah pred Vrhovnim sodiščem bo 12. oktobra 2017! Že sedaj lepo vabljeni! Jesen je tukaj in novo vztrajniško leto se je začelo. Čaka nas ogromno dela, saj se krivice, oškodovanja ter zlorabe sodne in politične moči vrstijo. Kot veste smo bili dogovorjeni, da bomo imeli 14. 9. prvi shod v novem vztrajniškem letu. Verjamem, da se prvega shoda vsi veselimo! A letošnji september je neverjetno poln aktivnosti in dogodkov, ki so že vnaprej določeni in so povezani predvsem s predsedniškimi volitvami in referendumom o enem tiru. Organizacijsko vodstvo Odbora 2014 in jaz osebno smo v te aktivnosti polno vpeti, zato prosim, da z razumevanjem sprejmete odločitev, da je prvi shod Odbora 2014  pred Vrhovnim sodiščem v novem vztrajniškem letu prestavljen na četrtek 12. oktobra 2017, ob 17.00. Vem, da je to za veliko večino med nami žalostna informacija, če ne kar šok. Tudi sam sem jo težko sprejel, a enostavno je načrtovanih aktivnosti preveč, da bi lahko shod pripravili tako kot smo navajeni. Se vidimo 12. oktobra ob 17.00 pred Vrhodnim sodiščem! Kot vedno: mirno, kulturno in dostojanstveno, a odločno in nepopustljivo v zavzemanju za resnico in pravico.

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Pravosodni trk v ledeno goro

25.04.2017

23. 11. 2014 | Bogomir Štefanič ml. | Slovenski čas Dr. Damir Črnčec, predsednik Odbora 2014 Obramboslovec in politolog dr. Damir Črnčec je v javnosti znan kot profesor na Fakulteti za državne in evropske študije, sodelavec izobraževalnega programa Slovenske vojske, dvakrat (2005 in 2010) je bil direktor Obveščevalno-varnostne službe Ministrstva za obrambo, v letih 2012 in 2013 direktor Slovenske obveščevalno-varnostne agencije, je predsednik društva Evropska Slovenija, pisec številnih strokovnih in publicističnih prispevkov, zlasti s področja mednarodne in nacionalne varnosti. Slovenski čas ga je k pogovoru povabil v drugi vlogi: kot predsednika Odbora za varstvo človekovih pravic in temeljnih svoboščin – Odbora 2014, ki si, spodbujen z zadevo Patria, prizadeva za korenite spremembe slovenskega pravosodja.Pogovarjava se ob 25. obletnici padca berlinskega zidu. Takrat ste bili stari šele šestnajst let ...Tako čas padca berlinskega zidu kot potem ves proces pred osamosvojitvijo leta 1991 sem res spremljal še precej mlad, a sem se dobro zavedal, da so to prelomni dogodki. Seveda pa me je najbolj zaznamovala slovenska osamosvojitev.Ali ste pričakovali, da boste 25 let po začetku procesa demokratizacije protestirali, ker ste prepričani, da ima samostojna slovenska država ta čas spet na vesti politične zapornike – obsojence v zadevi Patria?Vsekakor tega ne bi mogel pričakovati, pa saj takrat o tem, ker sem bil le premlad, nisem niti razmišljal. Vaše vprašanje pa natančno zadene občutke starejših kolegov, ki so z nami v odboru za varstvo človekovih pravic in temeljnih svobodiščin, Odboru 2014, in so bili ob koncu 80. let v prvih vrstah v prizadevanju za demokratizacijo, spremembo političnega sistema, kot so Alenka Puhar, mag. Drago Demšar, David Tasič … V pogovorih so večkrat dejali, da si, ko smo dobili svojo državo, ki naj bi temeljila na spoštovanju človekovih pravic, nikakor niso predstavljali, da bo potrebno 25 let pozneje ponavljati “vajo iz demokratizacije”.Zakaj je bilo potrebno za Janšo, Krkoviča in Črnkoviča povzdigniti protestniški glas? V pravni državi, kar naj bi Slovenija bila, obstajajo pravne poti, po katerih naj bi imel vsakdo možnost prej ali slej dokazati nedolžnost.Za Slovenijo je napisano, da je socialna država, da je pravna država … Besede na ustavnem papirju dajejo slutiti, da so naši protesti res nekaj nepotrebnega. Ko pa od blizu pogledamo zadevo Patria, kaj vse se je dogajalo s tem procesom na različnih sodnih stopnjah, pridemo do drugačne ugotovitve. Javnost dobro pozna številne kritike, ki so jih o tej sodbi izrekli ugledni pravniki, tudi trije ustavni sodniki v ločenih mnenjih k sicer zavrnjeni prvi zahtevi za varstvo zakonitosti. V tem procesu ni dokazov, kaj, kje, kako, za kakšen denar naj bi se nekaj storilo. Nič oprijemljivega, vsa kozlovska sodba temelji na indicih, na frazi “naj bi”, torej na neki kafkansko-orwelovski novelistični zgodbi …Če pa k temu dodamo, kdo so akterji te zgodbe, se pojavijo dodatni pomisleki. Na čelu vrhovnega sodišča imamo človeka, ki je v prejšnjem režimu dokazano kršil človekove pravice, v našem odboru pa smo na podlagi odločitev ustavnega sodišča dokazali, da je sodeloval v senatih, ki so kršili človekove pravice tudi v demokraciji. Na vrhu tožilstva imamo človeka, ki je preganjal duhovnike, ki so v 70. letih blagoslovili križ in molili ob prikritem grobišču – in to je človek, ki je v demokraciji predstojnik najvišje tožilske instance, ki je vodila postopek zoper Janeza Janšo in soobtožene. Tudi zaradi takih stvari se ne moremo znebiti vtisa, da je to politično montirani proces, v marsičem podoben tistim, ki jih je uprizarjala nekdanja komunistična oblast, ki so ji bili prej omenjeni akterji zelo blizu oziroma so bili celo njen del.Slovenska posebnost?Da. Letos septembra smo v društvu Evropska Slovenija organizirali mednarodno konferenco o pravni državi in izzivih, s katerimi se soočajo demokracije, ki so zamenjale politične sisteme. Kolegica, profesorica prava s prestižne berlinske univerze, je povedala, da so v vzhodnem delu Nemčije po letu 1990 umaknili ne le vse kazenske sodnike, temveč so s fakultet odstranili tudi nekdanje profesorje, ker je prevladala ocena, da niso ne eni ne drugi sposobni procesirati prava demokratične države in družbe. Ko so se odstranjeni pritožili, je tudi nemško ustavno sodišče potrdilo, da niso kompetentni, da sodijo v demokraciji. Podoben primer se je nedavno znašel pred Evropskim sodiščem za človekove pravice (ESČP). To je jasno zastopalo stališče, da nekdo, ki je deloval v nekdanji totalitarni varnostni službi, v konkretnem primeru gre za romunsko Securitate, ne more zasesti javne funkcije v demokraciji. Če neki zakon to prepoveduje, je ustrezen in ni v nasprotju z evropsko konvencijo o človekovih pravicah.Že slišim ugovor slovenskih sodnikov, češ, saj je edino lustracijsko določilo doletelo prav nas, in sicer v zakonu o sodniški službi, ki ni dovoljeval, da bi bili v trajni mandat izvoljeni sodniki, ki so v prejšnjem režimu pri sojenju kršili človekove pravice.A kot dobro veste, se ta zakon v praksi sploh ni izvajal. Ali bi bil ob dosledni uporabi tega določila sedanji predsednik vrhovnega sodišča sploh lahko sodnik?! Tako pa je vso bedo vrha vrhovnega sodišča naplavil prav postopek izločitve Branka Masleše iz zahteve za varstvo zakonitosti v zadevi Patria. Občna seja vrhovnega sodišča je bila prvič nesklepčna, ker so bili sodniki poleti na dopustu, ko so se po dopustu spočiti vrnili, pa so večinsko ocenili, da je Masleša lahko predstojnik senata, ki je odločal o pritožbi Janeza Janše – torej o pritožbi nekoga, ki je javno in argumentirano nasprotoval temu, da bi Masleša sploh zasedel ta položaj. Imamo cel kup dokazov, da je njegovo sojenje vprašljivo. Z vidika prakse ESČP je njegovo imenovanje v senat popolnoma v nasprotju z načelom poštenega sojenja in nepristranskosti sodišča. Pri tem me je najbolj presenetilo to, da so skoraj vsi vrhovni sodniki – če se ne motim, so bili proti le štirje – podprli, da se Masleše ne izloči iz odločanja v zadevi Patria. Ko bo sodba zoper Janšo padla na ustavnem sodišču ali ESČP, se bo jasno pokazalo, da velika večina vrhovnih sodnikov ne razume, kaj pomeni vladavina prava, kaj pomeni pošteno in nepristransko sojenje.Ali so prizadevanja Odbora 2014 osredinjena le na obsojence v zadevi Patria? Tudi sedanji pravosodni minister vam očita, da radikalizirate razpravo o stanju v pravosodju le zaradi enega “politika v zaporu”.V odboru smo predstavili številne statistične podatke, ki kažejo na splošno stanje v pravosodju. Ti podatki so res grozljivi in nimajo pred seboj le enega človeka. Prof. Lovro Šturm je v svoji študiji ugotovil, da so slovenska sodišča v zadnjih 15 letih v različnih sestavah in senatih najmanj 613-krat kršila človekove pravice, kar izhaja iz odločitev slovenskega ustavnega sodišča. Verjemite, da je bilo kršitev še precej več, a zaradi različnih razlogov vseh podatkov še nimamo. Drugi podatek: slovenska sodišča so v skoraj 300 primerih izgubila proces pred ESČP zaradi kršitev človekovih pravic. Slovenija je po tej statistiki glede na število prebivalcev na neslavnem tretjem mestu med vsemi državami Sveta Evrope – slabši sta le Turčija in Rusija. Naslednji zgovorni podatek: študija Svetovnega ekonomskega foruma je ugotovila, da je Slovenija na 91. mestu po zagotavljanju pravne države, študija Svetovne banke pa, da so slovenska sodišča in celotno pravosodje na 122. mestu glede učinkovitosti reševanja sodnih sporov. Tudi varuhinja človekovih pravic ugotavlja, da so pritožbe zoper delovanje pravosodnih organov, ki pridejo pred njen urad, v 7,4-odstotnem deležu upravičene.Nabor teh podatkov jasno kaže, da pri kritičnem presojanju pravosodja ne gre le za primer Janeza Janše in drugih obsojenih v zadevi Patria, temveč da je slovenska tretja veja oblasti tudi v demokraciji velik kršitelj človekovih pravic. Ne nazadnje: samo četrtina prebivalcev Slovenije zaupa takšnemu pravosodju. Zaradi vseh nas je skrajni čas, da se teh problemov lotimo resno in temeljito. Primer Patria je le vrh ledene gore in je bil sprožilec, ki je pripeljal do tega, da smo sistematično odprli to rakavo rano slovenske družbe.Statistika, ki ste jo predstavili, je nekakšna “diagnoza” te rane, “terapijo” pa prinaša peticija za pravično družbo in državo vladavine prava, ki ste jo javnosti ponudili v presojo in podpis v začetku novembra. Kaj so temeljne zahteve te peticije?Celotno peticijo je mogoče prebrati in jo tudi podpisati na naši spletni strani www.odbor2014.si. Naj peticijo v njenih predlogih, kako naprej, na kratko povzamem. Prva in ključna zahteva je preglednost in popolna javnost sojenja in sodnih odločitev. Zahtevamo javni prenos sojenj razen v izjemnih primerih, kot so sojenja, v katerih sodelujejo mladoletne osebe. Želimo izvedeti imena sodnikov, ki so kršili človekove pravice. Za 613 primerov kršenja človekovih pravic, ki sem jih že omenil, smo po zakonu o dostopu do informacij javnega značaja že zahtevali podatke, kdo so bili sodniki, ki so sodelovali v teh senatih, sedaj pa še zahtevamo, da se razkrije, kako so glasovali posamezni člani senatov. Žalostno je, da lahko izvemo, kako so glasovali sodniki ustavnega sodišča (ti lahko napišejo tudi ločena mnenja), ne moremo pa izvedeti, kako so glasovali v senatih vrhovnega sodišča, višjega sodišča … Prav nobenega razloga ni, da tega ne bi smeli videti in vedeti. Vpogled v to bi nam omogočil, da jasno povemo, kateri sodnik je odgovoren za kršitve. Zato tudi zahtevamo, da ocena sodniške službe postane javna. Tu se srečujemo z anomalijo sodnega sveta, v katerem je premalo zastopana javnost. Sodni svet odloča o morebitni prekinitvi trajnega mandata sodnikov, čeprav jih imenuje državni zbor. Po našem mnenju to ni prav: tisti, ki te imenuje, naj te tudi razrešuje, pri tem pa naj bo postopek javen in pregleden, zakaj in kako je prišlo do imenovanja ter zakaj in kako je prišlo do razrešitve. Videti želimo celoten življenjepis sodnikov in njihove letne ocene, ki se pišejo znotraj sodstva, a ostajajo javnosti zaprte. Le zakaj, če pa so sodniki funkcionarji, kot so poslanci in ministri. O poslancih in ministrih vemo skorajda vse, o sodnikih pa je na primer greh vedeti, kakšno je njegovo premoženje …Ali terjate tudi odgovornost za napačne sodniške odločitve?Zahtevamo jasen sistem odgovornosti, ki bo omogočal presojo, ali je šlo v nekem primeru le za posameznem strokovno napako ali pa se pri določenem sodniku srečujemo z vzorcem ravnanj, ko je teh napak precej več, kot bi bilo še dopustno na podlagi normalne statistike. Ne govorimo le o sodnikih, temveč vsaj še o tožilcih.Ali prav razumem: Pravosodju, ki vztraja v slonokoščenem stolpu nedotakljivosti, želite dati obraz?Res je. Državljani imamo pravico videti ta obraz, vedeti, kaj kdo v pravosodju počne, slišati, kako to počne. Saj ne zahtevamo nič posebnega. Javnost delovanja sodne veje oblasti je trend in praksa tudi drugod na Zahodu.Težave, na katere opozarjate, seveda niso od včeraj. Ali se kdaj spomnite nemškega sodnika Normana Doukoffa, ki je leta 2003 v času slovenskega pridruževanja Evropski zvezi postavil podobno diagnozo: da je sodni sistem v Sloveniji neučinkovit, čeprav imamo sorazmerno zelo veliko sodnikov, ki pa se pri nas bolj ukvarjajo s ščitenjem lastnih privilegijev in plač kot s čim drugim ... Ko je javno predstavil to kritiko, je “padlo” po njem – podobno kot po Odboru 2014.Seveda se spomnim teh ugotovitev. Nesrečni zgodbi o slovenskem pravosodju lahko dodamo tudi finančni vidik, na katerega opozarjate: imamo največ sodnikov glede na številko prebivalstva v Evropski zvezi, to pomeni, da imamo najdražji sodni sistem (dvakrat dražji, kot je povprečje v povezavi), ki je pa hkrati najmanj učinkovit. Gospodarski sodni spori v povprečju trajajo skorajda štiri leta in so dokazano škodljivi za slovensko gospodarstvo.Ob kritičnih ugotovitvah tujih raziskav, ki se vrstijo že več kot desetletje, se nisem mogel ubraniti smehu, ko sem v enem izmed številnih mainstream medijev, ki skušajo zagovarjati oblastna stališča, prebral, kako so dobili neko novo raziskavo, po kateri naj bi se ugled našega pravosodja bistveno dvignil. Takšne stvari bomo v trobilih tipa Delo ali Dnevnik v prihodnje zelo verjetno brali vedno pogosteje. Bralcem svetujem, naj se na to propagando ne ozirajo; verodostojno ogledalo nam postavlja tujina. Odločitve ESČP, ocene Svetovne banke in Svetovnega ekonomskega foruma so neizprosni pokazatelji, kje smo in kam gremo.Še to: od takrat, ko je nemški strokovnjak Norman Doukoff predstavil kritični pogled na slovensko pravosodje, so šle stvari le še na slabše. Pa saj se tudi sodniki sami – vsaj tisti, ki premorejo kanček samokritičnosti, vem, da je takih kar nekaj – tega dobro zavedajo. Poslanec državnega zbora je na spletnih portalih objavil zapis neke sodnice, ki je sama ocenila, da imajo sodniki premalo dela, da imajo premajhen pripad zadev. Enako velja za tožilstvo. To povedo tudi meni. Hkrati pa poslušamo, da je v pravosodju zaposlenih premalo ljudi.Nastavljanje kritičnega ogledala slovenskemu pravosodju je naporno opravilo, ampak pri tem bomo vztrajali, kot smo doslej – že 140 dni (pogovor je bil posnet 6. novembra; op. B. Š.), odkar imamo edinega političnega zapornika v Evropski uniji.Ali je to protestniško vztrajanje že rušenje neodvisne tretje veje oblasti, kot vam očitajo?To so tragikomični očitki pravosodne oblastniške vrhuške. Najprej so nam govorili, da sploh ne smemo demonstrirati, potem so nam povedali, da ne smemo kritizirati njihovih sodb. Pa saj prav to počne denimo predsednik ZDA v svojih nagovorih kongresu. ESČP je v svojih sodbah jasno povedalo, da so gospe in gospodje sodniki tretja veja oblasti, da so torej funkcionarji, plačani iz državnega proračuna, in da zato lahko javnost kadar koli kritizira njih in njihovo delo – skorajda tako, kot kritizira politike: parlamentarce in ministre. Kaj smo dosegli v 140 dneh? Da danes nihče, kdor je vsaj malo demokrata, več resno ne postavlja vprašanja, ali sploh smemo protestirati pred vrhovnim sodiščem in javno kritizirati sodbe. Nekaj se je torej že premaknilo ...Pogovarjava se neposredno po tem, ko je vrhovno sodišče – sicer spet s pregovorno zamudo – objavilo razsodbo v zahtevi za varstvo zakonitosti v zadevi Patria. Neuradni podatek o zavrnjeni zahtevi je zdaj tudi uraden. Ali ta odločitev kakor koli spreminja prizadevanja Odbora 2014?Ne. Peticija, o kateri sva se prej pogovarjala, je spodbuda, imperativ za nadaljnje delo. V Odboru 2014 bomo na tej podlagi pripravili predlog normativnih sprememb. Peticija je torej širši strateški okvir, ki se bo konkretiziral s spremembami zakonodaje, ki bo omogočila vse to, kar predlagamo. Kar zadevo sámo odločitev vrhovnega sodišča v zadevi Patria, pa: moje mnenje je bilo vsekozi, da je pod vodstvom Branka Masleše žal nemogoče pričakovati pošteno, nepristransko odločitev. Upam, da bo zdaj ustavno sodišče zmoglo sprejeti odločitev na podlagi tega, kar je večina ustavnih sodnikov že zapisala, ko so zavrgli prvo pritožbo – namreč da so v sodbi znaki hujših kršitev človekovih pravic, ki so jih določneje opredelili trije ustavni sodniki v ločenih mnenjih. Če prej ne, se bo to izkazalo na ESČP. Od tam je danes prišla nova klofuta: pet sodb, v katerih je Sloveniji očitano kršenje pravic zapornikov.Te dni ste se odločili za internacionalizacijo svojih prizadevanj. Z demonstracijami v Ženevi je Odbor 2014 pospremil nastop ministra za pravosodje Gorana Klemenčiča, ki je na zasedanju medvladne delovne skupine Sveta Združenih narodov za človekove pravice v Ženevi predstavljal stanje človekovih pravic v naši državi. Kaj si obetate od takšnih akcij v tujini?Ozaveščanje mednarodne javnosti teče že od začetka naših dejavnosti, v zadnjem času smo jo le intenzivirali. A kaj dosti niti ni treba opozarjati, kajti ključni odločevalci v demokratični Evropi vedo, kaj se pri nas dogaja, seznanjeni so tudi s statistiko, o kateri sva prej govorila. In ko temu dodamo še slab gospodarski položaj, je vsem jasno, da država, ki je bila včasih zgled uspešne tranzicijske države in je s pohvalami leta 2008 predsedovala Svetu Evropske unije, ni več to, kar je bila. Postali smo bolnik Evrope. Iz evropske Slovenije vse bolj postajamo balkanska Slovenija. Pri čemer balkanizacijo v duhu Slovarja slovenskega knjižnega jezika razumem kot neurejenost – pravno in še kakšno.Morda še en primer, kako nas vidijo iz tujine. Dekan finske pravne fakultete, ki je bil na konferenci, ki sva jo že omenila, je bil v prispevku na nacionalni televiziji zmanipuliran glede tega, kar je dejansko govoril na posvetu. Ko je naslednji dan ugotovil, kaj se je zgodilo, je tvitnil nekako tako: Da razumeš Slovenijo, torej postkomunistično državo in njeno pravo, moraš razumeti tudi to, da v komunizmu ni bilo prava. Prišel je z eno percepcijo naše države, odšel pa z drugačno, resnično – slabo. Ni bil edini, ki je to doživel.Pravosodni minister, tako se zdi, ni bil najbolj srečen, ker ste ga v Ženevi pospremili z demonstracijami. Hkrati pa je ob dnevu pravosodja, ki s(m)o ga praznovali 4. novembra, na nacionalni televiziji trdil, da se niste pripravljeni srečati z njim v osebnem pogovoru, čeprav naj bi vam menda odprl vrata svoje pisarne.Zelo smo zadovoljni, da se je pravosodni minister končno uspel odzvati na naše pobude, čeprav se je odzval pričakovano – oblastniško arogantno in z zavajanjem. Vabila za srečanje nam doslej še ni dal. Govoril je v slogu, češ če bomo v odboru izrazili interes za pogovor, nas bo sprejel. V odboru smo ministra javno pozvali k podpisu peticije, ki smo jo pripravili. Upamo, da bo minister, v dobro nas vseh, zmogel pripraviti predlog ukrepov, kot jih predvideva peticija.Ali v sedanji oblasti sploh vidite pripravljenost za uresničitev sprememb, ki jih predlagate?Iskreno povedano: ne. Po vsej verjetnosti bi bilo mogoče potencial za take spremembe zbrati le okoli nečesa, kar bi lahko imenovali Demos 2.0 – v novi opoziciji, ki bi črpala iz demokratizacijskih korenin poznih 80. in začetka 90. let prejšnjega stoletja in bi kot prvi Demos povezovala široko demokratično pahljačo. V tistem času je to bilo šest strank in enajst posameznikov, ki se je podpisalo pod ustanovitev Demosa.A ob tem ne smemo pozabiti nečesa, na kar je hote ali nehote opozoril dolgoletni ideolog Socialnih demokratov dr. Igor Lukšič, ko je v nedavnem intervjuju govoril o temeljnem merilu, po katerem kontinuitetni vplivneži ravnajo v slovenskem političnem prostoru: ni namreč važno, iz katere stranke je kdo, ki leze na površje, “samo da ni iz stranke Janeza Janše”, dokler pa Janša ni bil glavni igralec, pa je bilo pomembno, “da ni bil iz cerkvene stranke”. Ker Janša, ki so ga spravili v zapor, ne more biti več sovražnik številka ena, se sprašujem: Ali bodo zdaj spet prvi nasprotnik “cerkvene stranke”?! Torej lahko pričakujemo, da bomo tarča znova mi, kristjani?! To je diskurz, ki je sam po sebi grozljiv, nesprejemljiv za moderno evropsko državo. Dobro upravljanje evropske Slovenije izključuje take manipulacije, pa tudi to, da se kazenski pregon in druga kazenska sredstva uporablja kot orodje političnega boja.Če je srečanje s pravosodnim ministrom še vedno nekoliko “v zraku”, pa ostaja dejstvo, da ste se srečali denimo s predsednico sodniškega društva, varuhinjo človekovih pravic. Nekateri so vam vendarle pripravljeni prisluhiti.Sprejel nas je tudi predsednik republike. Z vsemi želimo biti v dialogu in zahvaljujemo se vsem, ki to željo spoštujejo in se z nami pogovarjajo. Ampak saj veste, kaj pravi ljudska modrost: besede so poceni. Pričakujemo, da prijaznim nasmeškom sledijo tudi dejanja. Predsednica sodniškega društva je dejala, da se bodo aktivno odzvali na naše pobude. Mi potrpežljivo čakamo. Mimogrede: na sestanku je povedala, da so tudi oni predstavniki civilne družbe, na kar sem ji lahko le odvrnil, da je 24 ur na dan, sedem dni v tednu in 365 dni v letu sodni funkcionar, ne pa predstavnica civilne družbe.Tudi na Odbor 2014 leti očitek, da niste prava, neodvisna civilna družba, temveč privesek ene stranke. Kakšno je razmerje odbora do političnih strank?V odboru delujemo ljudje različnih svetovnih nazorov in političnih prepričanj. Očitki, ki jih omenjate, so bili zelo glasni denimo tri tedne pred volitvami, ko so zaprli voditelja opozicije, češ da je prizadevanje odbora le del predvolilne tekme. Z vztrajanjem dokazujemo, da so bili očitki zlonamerni in zlagani. Nam gre za stvar: za primer obsojenih v zadevi Patria in za to, da se v pravosodju stvari korenito spremenijo na bolje. Kajti tako, kot je, preprosto več ne gre naprej. Samozadostnost in samopašnost tretje veje oblasti se mora enkrat nehati.Kako se financirate?Delo odbora temelji le na prostovoljstvu in prispevkih naših podpornikov. Za razliko od številnih civilnodružbnih organizacij v tej državi ne dobivamo državnih sredstev ali sredstev iz državnih podjetij. Zanje nismo zaprosili in tudi ne bomo. Zahvaljujem se vsem, ki nas podpirajo z udeležbo kot vztrajniki na shodih, nam pišejo spodbudna pisma, darujejo sredstva ... Doslej nas je bilo na različnih shodih pred vrhovnim sodiščem in pred desetimi okrožnimi sodišči že 60.000. Podpirajo nas tudi Slovenci, ki živijo v tujini: v ZDA, Kanadi, Avstraliji, Avstriji, Italiji, Švici, Nemčiji in drugih državah. Hvala vsem!Čim dlje vztrajate, tem večje je tveganje, da boste tarče osebnih diskreditacij.To velja zlasti za vas in kolega Aleša Primca, sicer voditelja Civilne iniciative za družino in pravice otrok. Ne bi bili prvi, ki bi vas doletel “medijski umor” ...S kolegom Alešem sva morda res najbolj izpostavljeni figuri sicer heterogene, a hkrati dopolnjujoče se ekipe, v kateri ni nihče nenadomestljiv. Že sva bila deležna “posebne” obravnave: v medijih so nama šteli delovne ure, preverjali, kdaj hodiva na dopust ... Navsedanje je to prav, saj hočeva tudi midva biti pri svojih prizadevanjih popolnoma pregledna. No, včasih pa stvari le gredo predaleč, ko nas recimo kakšen “prominentni” pravni strokovnjak (tj. penolog Dragan Petrovac; op. B. Š.) razglasi za zametek drhali. Našle bi se še kakšne podobne stvari. Diskreditacije oziroma kar metode specialne vojne iz udbaškega arzenala nas spremljajo že od prvega dne. To smo ne tudi pričakovali, a nas ne ovira, da ne bi nadaljevali svojih prizadevanj: mirno in dostojanstveno, a vendar odločno in nepopustljivo.Omenili ste Udbo. Ali se motim, če trdim, da ste postali izrazito “moteči” predvsem po tem, ko ste spomladi 2013 Arhivu Republike Slovenije, ko ga je še vodil Jože Dežman, vi pa ste bili takrat šef Sove, izročili gradivo SDV? Dotaknili ste se nedotakljivih, dregnili v temna početja in interese še vedno vplivnih elit ...Tri dni, preden sem odšel z direktorskega mesta v Sovi, smo arhivu predali več kot sto škatel gradiva, ki jih na Sovi, če bi moji predhodniki spoštovali zakonodajo, več ne bi smelo biti. V tem gradivu so zelo konkretni dokazi o tem, kaj je počela politična policija. Ne nazadnje: v teh škatlah je bil “primer Crnogorac”, ki je pozneje postal tako znan. Najbolj žalosten in razočaran sem bil, ko sem letos ugotovil, da je stranka, ki ima korenine v pomladanski opciji, zagovarjala, da se tudi to gradivo zapre. Prepričan sem, da se lahko le iz razjasnjenih napak preteklosti naučimo, česa ne smemo ponavljati v prihodnosti. Popolna odprtost in preglednost arhivskega gradiva je nujni pogoj, da se bodo stvari začele izboljševati. Po uveljavitvi novele arhivskega zakona pa se jasno kaže, da prepričevanje o tem, kako z njo arhivsko gradivo ne bo zaprto, temveč kvečjemu še bolj dostopno, nima stvarne podlage. Arhiv je zaprt, gradivo, ki ga dobivajo raziskovalci, pa je velikokrat popolnoma počrnjeno oziroma tako “anonimizirano”, da je v veliki meri neuporabno. To je velika škoda za celotno nacijo in sramota za tiste, ki so takšno stanje podprli.Ali ni zgodba o slovenskem pravosodju pa tudi o nekaterih drugih oblastnih segmentih, kot so obveščevalne službe, v veliki meri ponesrečena zaradi “perpetutiranja” miselnosti in kadrov iz prejšnjega sistema v sedanjega; v njej namreč manjka ostra zareza med totalitarnim in demokratičnim. “Slovenija je država, katere pravo temelji na revolucionarnem pravu in ne na tradiciji zahodnoevropske pravne misli,” ste tudi sami ugotavljali na mednarodnem srečanju, ki ga je priredilo društvoEvropska Slovenija. Ostra ugotovitev …... a empirično dokazljiva! Sodniki in akademiki, kot je bil Leonid Pitamic, so bili po letu 1945, po revolucionarnem prevzemu oblasti, izgnani iz slovenske sodne prakse in teorije. Nadomestili so jih revolucionarni pravniki tipa Ljubo Bavcon, ki so še ne tako davno pisali učbenike o tem, kako je pravo namenjeno pregonu nasprotnikov totalitarnega sistema. No, in taki pravniki imajo še danes kabinete na pravni fakulteti, vedrijo in oblačijo v pravosodju. Kaj takega bi bilo v Nemčiji nemogoče. Naš problem je strašen razkorak med tem, kar smo zapisali, in tem, kar smo udejanjili. Preambula ustave napotuje k zarezi med prejšnjim stanjem, ko so bile sistematično kršene človekove pravice, in demokratično Slovenjo, a je nismo uresničili. Kot članica Evropske unije smo zavezani tudi Lizbonski pogodbi, ki jasno pravi, da povezava zajema navdih iz kulturne, verske in humanistične dediščine Evrope, ki temelji na človekovih pravicah, svobodi, demokraciji, enakosti in pravni državi. Iskreno se vprašajmo: Kaj od tega imamo pri nas? Saj imamo formalno demokracijo, dejanske pa ne; saj imamo formalno pravno državo, dejanske pa ne ... Prav zato ker nismo naredili korenitega reza med totalitarnim in demokratičnim.Najboljša ponazoritev tega stanja je dejstvo, da je bivši šef komunistične partije v demokratični državi postal prvi predsednik z dvema mandatoma. Predstavljajte si, da bi bil Ceausescu predsednik demokratične Romunije ali Honecker predsednik kakšne vzhodnonemške deželne vlade ali pa morda kar zvezne ... Še danes nam prav nekdanji tovariši najglasneje razlagajo, kaj je demokracija, nas podučujejo, kdaj in proti komu smemo demonstrirati in kdaj ne. Sprašujem jih: Od kod pa prihajate? Ustava je jasna, njene vrednote so jasne, če jih vi ne razumete, to ne pomeni, da jih nihče ne razume. No, morda pa jih razumejo, pa jih zavestno ne želijo uresničevati, kar je po svoje še slabše ...Izhodišče in ugotovitve tega pogovora o stanju pravne države pri nas so, milo rečeno, pesimistične. Ali je tak tudi vaš pogled na prihodnost?Nedelujoča pravna država, ki bi jo sicer morala zagotavljati tretja veja oblasti, je tista “os zla”, ki se mora nujno zlomiti, da bi odprli vrata drugačni prihodnosti, v kateri bi lahko bolje delovali tudi zakonodajna in izvršna veja oblasti. To je moje trdno prepričanje. Tudi zato smo najvišjim predstavnikom te “osi zla” ob dnevu pravosodja, ko so si sami podeljevali priznanja, podelili črne zvezde – to je simbol potemnjene, nekoč rdeče zvezde. Z njimi želimo opozoriti, da svojega dela niso dobro opravili, da zaradi njih nismo evropska, temveč balkanska Slovenija. Nekoč sem to stanje primerjal z zgodbo o Titaniku. Afera Patria je ledena gora, v katero se je zaletel Titanik slovenskega pravosodja. Prekati v njem, ki mu zagotavljajo, da lahko pluje še nekaj časa, se postopoma polnijo. Raven vode, zelo umazane vode, se v tem Titaniku nezadržno dviguje in prej ali slej bo doživel takšno usodo, kot jo je resnični parnik. A očitno je potreben tak brodolom zatohle miselnosti, vzorcev in tudi ljudi, da bo slovensko pravosodje postalo drugačno, zares pravično in v službi vladavine prava. Zdaj še ni, a iskreno upam, da po prizadevanjih našega odbora in še koga bo.Vprašanje je le, kateri orkester bo igral, ko se bo ladja potapljala. Pravzaprav to sploh ni vprašanje: orkester prevladujočih medijev veselo igra že precej časa ... Slovenski čas, št. 55, letnik 2014 http://www.druzina.si/ICD/spletnastran.nsf/clanek/pravosodni-trk-v-ledeno-goro

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Ustavna pritožba zoper sodbo v zadevi Patria

25.04.2017

Danes je Franci Matoz, odvetnik Janeza Janše, predstavil ustavno pritožbo zoper sodbo v zadevi Patria. Ustavna pritožba je bila vložena zaradi grobega teptanja ustavnih pravic in Evropske konvencija o varstvu človekovih pravic in temeljnih svoboščin (EKČP). Kršitve se nanašajo na pravico do neodvisnega in nepristranskega sodišča, načelo zakonitosti v kazenskem pravu, pravico do obrambe, enako varstvo pravic in načelo nedolžnosti. Kršeni so bili 22., 23., 27., 28. in 29. člen Ustave RS in 6. člen Evropske konvencija o varstvu človekovih pravic in temeljnih svobošči. V Ustavni pritožbi pritožnik NE predlaga izločitve dokazov, ker jih ni, niti razaveljavitve člena zakona, da si ne bi kdo na ta način elegantno opral rok. Ustavna pritožba je odsegljiva na povezavi:

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Matej Avbelj: Failed Democracy: The Slovenian Patria Case

25.04.2017

The affair started in 2008, a few weeks before the general parliamentary elections, when the Slovenian national TV showed a Finnish documentary claiming that the then Slovenian Prime Minister Janez Janša was bribed by the Finnish arms-selling corporation Patria, which was consequently and as a result awarded the contract with the Slovenian government. The documentary identified the recipient of a bribe exclusively with the letter J, that a couple of years later turned out to stand not for Mr. Janša, but for a Croatian businessman Mr. Jerković. Nevertheless, a huge political controversy understandably broke loose. The political scandal made Mr. Janša finish second in that parliamentary election and resulted in the establishment of the government controlled by the political left. It was only two years later that a direct indictment was brought against Mr. Janša by a state prosecutor who is a wife of an agent of the Slovenian communist secret-service police that arrested Mr. Janša as a political dissident during the reign of the communist regime in the late 1980s. The indictment accused Mr. Janša and others involved in the case for having committed a crime of accepting gifts for illegal intermediation pursuant to Art. 269 of the Slovenian Penal Code. However, the indictment raised a lot of controversy as the criminal offence was literally alleged to have been committed on an undetermined date, at an undetermined place and through an undetermined method of communication. This patently constitutionally flawed indictment nevertheless led to a trial at the local court of Ljubljana, which after a number of months (in between local and another parliamentary election) found the defendants guilty. The case was then appealed to the High Court of Ljubljana on all counts, but the High Court confirmed the ruling of the local court as it stood. Mr. Janša has thus been convicted with the force of res judicata exclusively on the basis of circumstantial evidence for having accepted a promise of an unknown award at a vaguely determined time, at an undetermined place and by an undetermined mode of communication to use his influence, then as a Prime Minister, to have a military contract awarded to the Finnish company Patria The decision of the High Court appeared to be vitiated by a number of patent violations of constitutional rights and principles. The High Court openly stated that neither the time nor the place of the alleged criminal offence are constitutive of the crime, since they merely contribute to the individualization and concretization of the crime. The High Court went even further by ruling that the fact that the crime was allegedly committed through an undetermined method of communication is unproblematic, as the act of accepting the award is sufficiently defined in the abstract provision contained in the Penal Code. Moreover, the High Court stressed a number of times that the wording of Art. 269 of the Slovenian Penal Code was open-textured, but instead of construing it narrowly in line with the requirements of lex certa, the Court used it as a way of attributing the criminal act to the defendant. Finally, the High Court at times even appeared to be shifting the burden of proof on the defendant, who has thus been forced to acquit himself from the indictment, which has, as phrased, effectively disabled him to present any alibi or to prepare a meaningful defense. As a result, the defendant Mr. Janša sought a direct relief at the Constitutional Court by filing a constitutional complaint prior exhausting the extraordinary legal remedy at the Supreme Court. In what follows, the paper describes and critically analyzes the decision of the Constitutional Court and the events that followed thereafter. The events that, unfortunately, demonstrate severe rule of law problems in Slovenia and which push this country into the group of the de facto failed constitutional democracies. II. Introduction On June 11 2014 the Constitutional Court of Slovenia ruled 6:3 to reject the constitutional complaint lodged by Janez Janša, the first indicted and convicted by final judgement in the Patria case. The decision Up-373/14-222 led not only to unprecedentedly critical dissenting opinions from the three judges who voted against it, but also spurred criticism from the most prominent lawyers in the country, former justices of the Constitutional Court known in the public for their varied world views. The severity of this internal and external critique alone would call for a detailed analysis. The need for such an analysis is, however, further strengthened by the complexity of the entire context of the Patria case. For almost 8 years this case has burdened Slovenian public space, in media-political, and therefore democratic, terms; and in legal terms for almost half this period. This leads me to undertake the analysis of the decision and of the whole trial through the prism of the law in context approach. This long-established conceptual approach to understanding law is professed in particular, yet not exclusively, by law-and-society scholarship. One of its core tenets is that law is conditioned by its widest social context; the latter, in turn, is simultaneously conditioned by law.3 Selznick thus writes: “If positive law shades into a broader realm of enabling or limiting conditions, thecharacter of the legal order as a whole – positive law plus its premises, institutions, and its sustaining culture – is also framed by and implicated in a particular social and historical context.” We have to keep this context in mind for it is with awareness of, or even with fidelity to, context that we can avoid legal formalism. Plain legal formalism, as we shall see, not only means poor implementation of law, it can also become lawlessness itself. The conduct of the Slovenian judiciary in the Patria case, crowned by the passive permissiveness of the Constitutional Court, has pushed us to the very margins of the Slovenian Radbruch formula. To substantiate this alarming thesis, I shall commence with a description of the Constitutional Court’s controversial decision. I shall then critically examine it: starting from its own premises; then investigating these premises against the case referred to as a precedent in the decision of the Court; and finally in light of the exceptionally critical dissenting opinions. Lastly, I intend to set the decision of the majority at the Constitutional Court in the wider context of the Patria case: the impact on democracy in the Republic of Slovenia and the increasingly revealing picture of the state of the rule of law in Slovenia as constituted (in a legal sense) by all judicial actors, in particular judges, and, of course, the academic legal profession. III. The Decision of the Constitutional Court In this case the Constitutional Court was requested to consider a constitutional complaint lodged before all other legal remedies were exhausted. The legal basis for such exceptional action is stipulated in the second paragraph of Article 51 of the Constitutional Court Act (CCA). This reads: “Before all extraordinary legal remedies have been exhausted, the Constitutional Court may exceptionally decide on a constitutional complaint if the alleged violation is manifest and if irreparable consequences for the complainant would result from the implementation of a certain act.” The petitioner alleged “manifest (prima facies)” violations of the rights from Article 22, the first paragraph of Article 23, Article 27, the first paragraph of Article 28 and Article 29 of the Constitution, as well as Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights. He went on to concretize these violations. He also proposed withholding of the execution of the judgment of the ordinary courts, referring to the irreparable consequences of imprisonment for his personal freedom as well as for the exercise of his passive electoral right in light of the forthcoming parliamentary elections. The Constitutional Court rejected the complaint on the basis that the conditions from the second paragraph of Article 51 of the CCA were not met. The rejection of the complaint consists of several arguments; however, they all seem to create the impression (intentionally or unintentionally) that the majority of the Court strove to find ways to avoid (or postpone) the admission of the constitutional complaint. In its first argument the Constitutional Court dwells at length on the constitutionally defined inter-institutional relationship between the Constitutional Court and the Supreme Court. This relationship is distilled down to the importance of mutual respect between legal institutions, preventing one institution from assuming the tasks of another on the basis of a presumption of distrust. The rejection of the constitutional complaint is thus founded primarily on trust in the Supreme Court, along with the need to respect the division of jurisdiction and in pursuit of the best possible constitutional reasoning. To achieve the latter, the Constitutional Court’s knowledge of the positions and the practices of the ordinary courts, in particular the highest court in the country, are of decisive importance. It is for these constitutionally-structural reasons that the majority of the judges think that the Constitutional Court should exercise restraint in regard to application of the exception from Article 51 of the CCA. In the second argument, the Constitutional Court seeks reasons for restraint in the wording of Article 51 of the CCA itself, interpreting it very restrictively.12 This restrictive reading of the concept of exceptionality is later re-applied by the Court in its attempt to interpret the notion of manifest violations. The Court refers to the precedent case Up-62/96 dated April 11 1996, where the notion of manifest violation was defined as “such that it cannot be disproved or "undermined" even after comprehensiveexamination, since all circumstances, common sense and experience, without evidencing and with no possibility of counter-arguing, exclude any possibility of a different conclusion.” The Court then announces the application of the above defined judicial test to the concrete case of the asserted violations of human rights. It concludes that “the constitutional complaintcontains serious allegations of violations of the petitioner's human rights, which require careful, accurate and thorough analysis,” however this seriousness does not meet the required standard for manifest violation. The reasoning? A judgment based exclusively on circumstantial evidence is in itself not a manifest violation, because “the Constitutional Court has hitherto not yet establishedconstitutional standards, against which the justification of the alleged violation could be assessed.” 16 If however the Constitutional Court were to conclude that such a judgment complies with the law, this would “engender additional questions [which, as the Constitutional Court readily admits, the petitioner is explicitly asking anyway] as to in how far a particular judgment can be based on circumstantial evidence (only); what the description of a criminal act should entail in such cases; and how concretized those conclusions should be which the Court has deduced from proven facts, after eliminating all other possible logical conclusions.” The Constitutional Court claims that “all of this has to be subjected to a serious and thoroughconstitutional review in order for clear answers to be formed and in order for clear constitutional standards in respect of these human rights to be established.” However, the Supreme Court has to have the first say, as these questions pertain to both criminal and constitutional law.  The Constitutional Court draws similar conclusions with regard to other alleged violations: it either rejects them as not manifest or else restates that it has hitherto not yet passed a judgement on the relevant constitutional question and that this should be done by the Supreme Court. Since the standard for manifest violation of human rights therefore is not met, the Constitutional Court does not even proceed to assess the potentially irreparable consequences for the petitioner. Instead, it simply rejects the constitutional complaint. IV. Critical Analysis of the Decision of the Constitutional Court The decision presented above is unconvincing even on its own premises. As seen above, it is founded primarily on the principle of inter-institutional trust towards the Supreme Court; the latter has, at least to date, failed to justify this trust. Even though the Constitutional Court cautions that the allegations of human rights violations are serious and although it explicitly quotes the provision from Article 423 of the Criminal Procedure Act which gives the Supreme Court the legal power to withhold or suspend the execution of a criminal sanction (depending on the content of the request lodged for protection of legality) and thus to guarantee effectiveness of the extraordinary legal remedy, the Supreme Court has so far failed to do so. On the contrary, according to media reports, the Supreme Court has also washed its hands, referring the petitioner to the District Court for a decision on withholding criminal sanction, in the meantime the judge-rapporteur would be on holiday! 22 The rejection of the constitutional complaint and the consequent inaction of the Supreme Court left the petitioner de facto without an available effective legal remedy to defend his personal liberty and passive electoral right. This renders the supporting reason for rejecting the constitutional complaint void, while Slovenia evidently risks sanction by the European Court of Human Right under Article 6 of the ECHR. In light of the above, the efforts of the Constitutional Court to interpret the wording of Article 51 of the CCA as restrictively as possible are also completely unconvincing. The Constitutional Court performs an act of a genuinely conservative semantic acrobatics by linguistically enhancing the exceptionality of the procedure stipulated in Article 51 of the CCA. It achieves this by underlining that the Act uses the discretionary term “can, with emphasis on exceptionally.” Since a constitutional complaint is a subsidiary legal remedy, the powers from the above mentioned article can only be used “really exceptionally.” The Constitutional Court further insists on “how exceptional” a decision on a constitutional complaint under this article should be by listing its jurisprudence. It is not entirely clear what purpose these linguistic bravura serve, other than informing us in several places that exceptional is truly and so very exceptional, and by no means only exceptional. Their purpose is even less clear given the Constitutional Court anyway relies on its own standard for “manifest” human rights violation, whereas this standard is, as we shall see later, so restrictive in its substance that it is legally-logically untenable. The standard for manifest violation is derived from the above mentioned precedent Up-62/96 dated April 11 1996 which, although asserted differently, has only been selectively followed by the majority at the Constitutional Court. The decision indeed reiterates the standard for manifest violation; however, unlike the precedent case the majority this time does not actually apply the standard, with the exception of point 24. Unlike the decision Up-62/9626 the decision Up-373/14-22 does not contain a first-hand explanation as to why the alleged violations are not manifest. All we learn is that the “allegations of violations are serious” and “that they must be the subject to a serious constitutional review in order for clear constitutional standards to be established.”  Ultimately, however, the allegations are not reviewed, because “the Constitutional Court has not to date established such constitutional standards against which it would be possible to assess the merits of the alleged violation.” Take note: the fact that the Constitutional Court has not yet established jurisprudence in areas where difficult issues of criminal and constitutional law are raised has nothing of course to do with the question of whether the human rights violations are manifest or not. The two issues are completely independent. If the violation is manifest, the Court has to decide upon it; even more so if the constitutional standards supposedly do not yet exist. In particular if the petitioner is in prison. Under no circumstances should it be possible to deny that a violation is manifest because constitutional standards have not yet been established. And just because the Constitutional Court cannot or even does not know how to decide in the matter, should the ordinary courts indeed try first? As the Constitutional Court points out how unfavorable its position is due to the lack of clearly developed constitutional standards, I cannot but criticize isolationism. What about the comparative constitutional view? The Slovenian Constitutional Court is hardly the first in the world facing these questions. In many previous cases it managed to establish exemplary cooperation in judicial dialogue and in the practice of migration of constitutional standards in the era of so called new constitutionalism. Not this time though, although it would not need to search far. It would suffice to look into the separate opinion of Justice Peter Jambrek in the precedent Up-62/96, in which he compares Article 51 of the CCA with German regulation. The latter probably served as a model for the Slovenian one in the first place. Last but not least, even if the Constitutional Court of Slovenia had been the first in the world facing such a case, it would be expected - at least from the examples of the prominent highest courts abroad which wish to leave their imprint on the development of constitutional law - that the Court would seize such a case with both hands in order to establish the missing constitutional standards. Regardless of all the above, it is especially significant that the Constitutional Court majority overlooks that the standard for manifest violation from the decision Up-62/96 is obviously logically untenable. Not only is this clearly pointed out in the dissenting opinion of Justice Ernest Petrič, 31 it also derives from the dissenting opinion of Justice Boštjan M. Zupančič on the precedent decision to which the majority of the Constitutional Court clings so firmly, yet obviously selectively: “[…] the majority refused to decide upon the content of a first-rate constitutionalmatter on a formality, as if the law (the CCA) prevents them from doing so. They thus neglected the distinction between a prescriptive and an instrumental norm and harnessed the cart in front of the horse, which should be pulling the cart.” 32 In both cases the Constitutional Court majority interpreted the procedural requirement for manifest violation alike: in order to be allowed early admission to constitutional review the constitutional complaint must fulfil such a standard of violation that there wouldn't be much for the Constitutional Court to do at the actual constitutional review itself. If a manifest violation of human rights satisfies the procedural requirement for admission of the constitutional complaint solely when “it cannot be disproved or ‘undermined’ even after comprehensive examination, since all circumstances, common sense and experience, without evidencing and with no possibility of counter-arguing, exclude any possibility of a different conclusion”, then this procedural requirement automatically pre-determines the decision on substance. This is the very putting the cart in front of the horse, which is logically absurd and as such indicates a misinterpretation of Article 51 of the CCA. In addition, it is worth pointing out that the precedent Up-62/96 itself stands on very shaky constitutional foundations. Namely inherent to the case is an extremely questionable constitutional maneuver: after the three-member senate decided that the Court would hear the constitutional complaint, and after this decision was already made public, the Constitutional Court majority in plenum decided to reject the already admitted constitutional complaint. This happened even though the substantive decision-making of the Constitutional Court in full composition should only lead either to rejection or acceptance of the (substance of) the constitutional complaint. To sum up: the decision on rejection of the constitutional complaint faces a whole lot of troubles. The Constitutional Court rejects the constitutional complaint because it trusts in the Supreme Court and even instructs it to effectively protect the rights of the petitioner. This does not happen, however. The Constitutional Court justifies its decision with reference to precedent, a case controversial in itself. In doing so the Court takes on the standard for manifest violation and enhances it so far that practically no early constitutional complaint could fulfil it - as indeed in the last nine years, no constitutional complaint has. This is not surprising because such a standard is logically-legally untenable. On top of everything the Constitutional Court does not even actually apply this unfulfillable standard in its decision: there is no case by case reasoning as to why the alleged violations of human rights are not manifest. Also, the Constitutional Court, unlike in the precedent, despite or due to the unfulfilled condition for manifest violation, does not examine the requirement of the irreparable consequences which might justify a truly extraordinary exceptionality of this case. Such analysis can (only) be found in the dissenting opinions. V. Dissenting Opinions: Common Sense and Experience Dissenting opinions were written by Justices Jan Zobec, Mitja Deisinger and Ernest Petrič. They were united in the view that the Constitutional Court should admit the constitutional complaint, regardless of its insistence on the judicial test of the standard for manifest violation. Justice Zobec was the clearest in his claim that all three requirements are fulfilled: the manifestly violated human rights, irreparable consequences as well as the exceptionality of the case as an additional condition. The fulfilment of the second requirement is the simplest to ascertain since imprisonment always represents irreparable damage for the complainant.36 All three dissenting opinions also see the required standard for manifest violation met on a number of levels, most evidently from the aspect of the principle of legality as defined in the first paragraph of Article 28 of the Constitution, as well as from the consequently related right to effective defence as stipulated in Article 29 of the Constitution. The Prosecution, the District Court and the Higher Court were all aware of the fact, notorious from the beginning of proceedings and reiterated in the assertions of the complainant as well as in cautions from some quarters of the legal profession, that the complainant was first indicted and then sentenced for a criminal act that remains un-individualized, un-concretized and even abstract when it comes to how it was committed. This was confirmed fully by the three dissenting opinions. Justice Deisinger writes that a careful examination of the contested rulings shows that the court “took the prosecutor's place and transformed itself into a double(unconstitutional) role of court and prosecution.”As was most clearly pointed out by former constitutional Justice Franc Testen, this was a case of violation of the most fundamental, civilizational procedural principle: no plaintiff, no judge. This was further affirmed by another former constitutional Justice Matevž Krivic, when he publicly cautioned that Mr. Janša's sentence is based on proceeding with “a flaw so severe, although visible only to the most skilled lawyers' eyes, that it only has to make it to the Supreme Court - and the sentence will fall.” It is a case of a violation so grave that the indictment proposal should have been rejected and the proceedings on such basis should never have been started in the first place. It calls for replacing the sentence of the District Court with an acquittal. This violation is “clear, obvious and flagrant.” Furthermore, the alleged violation is also logically completely untenable. As Justice Zobec writes most insightfully, if the crucial element of a criminal act is neither recounted nor proven and it remains on an abstract level only, which is explicitly affirmed by the attempt of the Higher Court to help out the District Court which ruled verbatim that the crime: the acceptance of the promise of a reward was committed through ‘unidentified means of communication’,  “then the fundamental legal logical operation, the one that leads to sentencing and simultaneously means conclusion of the principle of legality in criminal law, becomes impossible. A subsumption of a concrete act under an abstract legal provision, a combination of both aspects of the principle of legality - that pertaining to the lawmaker (…) as well as that pertaining to the prosecution and consequently the judge (concretization and individualization of a criminal act).” Justice  Zobec  proceeds  by adding a  passage  which  undoubtedly constitutes  a  classic  of Slovenian constitutional law and theory, in particular of legal practice and reasoning: “It is evident to anybody that the subsumption of the abstract under the abstract is a logical nonsense for the same cannot be subsumed under the same, it can merely be equated (tautology); for a syllogism is not a tautology. And it is clear to anybody that it is impossible to defend oneself against an abstract allegation. From the aspect of constitutional process law (the safeguard from Article 28 of the Constitution) this means that a person can only be sentenced for a concretely committed act.” Justice Zobec concludes that this is something so self-evident that it also renders the condition for exceptionality fulfilled and thus allows the Constitutional Court to decide immediately, without waiting for the Supreme Court.44  This is of particular importance when the sentence of imprisonment is ruled in “flagrantly unfair trial” against the leader of the biggest opposition party, his imprisonment three weeks before elections fundamentally affecting the democratic process in the country as well as the legitimacy of the election outcome.  Justice Deisinger goes even a step further in his conclusion when he justifiably questions the very possibility of ensuring an impartial and hence a just trial for the complainant. This question has since been further validated with the recent address of the President of the Supreme Court at the annual event ‘Days of Judiciary’, where he shared the stage with the very same supreme public prosecutor who represented the indictment against the complainant. This took place after the constitutional complaint was lodged and before the request for protection of legality was filed. All of the above already moves us towards the wider context of the Patria case. However, before I focus on it, I should touch upon the reasons behind such a big discrepancy between the positions of the Constitutional Court’s minority and that of the majority. Since I am neither sociologist nor psychologist, I cannot provide a definite answer to this question. It seems to me though that the answer is hidden somewhere in the definition of the judicial test for manifest violation which the Constitutional Court chose to apply. There, among other things, it is stated that the perception of manifest violations of human rights depends also on “common sense and experience.” VI. Law in Context One of the most noticeable differences between the Constitutional Court majority and the minority in this case is the degree to which they recognize and highlight the wider context of the Patria case. As we have seen, the majority founds its decision on semantic assumptions of Article 51 of the CCA, on its past jurisprudence as well as on trust in the ordinary courts and division of labour between them. They do not deliberate on the consequences of their decision, at least not in the text itself. Nor do they define their point of view towards the consequences, although the petitioner refers to their irreparable nature. They fail to do so notwithstanding awareness of the fact that we are in the middle of an election campaign, three weeks before the election and that physical removal of the petitioner, the leader of the opposition, cannot remain without effect on the fair conduct of elections, and on the legitimacy of the outcome. For where else in Europe are opposition leaders imprisoned just before the election? It is evident that the majority at the Constitutional Court was not interested in these kinds of issues in this instance; just as, interestingly enough, another majority had not been interested in similar issues back in 1997 in the case that served as precedent in the case at hand. Back then, Justice Zupančic warned strongly in his separate opinion that the Constitutional Court avoided its jurisdiction and thus its responsibility in a case of capital importance out of legally-technical reasons, or more accurately because it assessed the “procedural requirements” too strictly. Instead of demonstrating the breadth of constitutional review, intended as the “main antidote to formalistic legal reasoning,” the Constitutional Court did just the opposite.Back then as well as today. The only difference is that the capital importance of today's case is redoubled from the aspect of constitutional law. The majority at the Constitutional Court today assumes both responsibility for the loss of personal freedom of an individual, as well as responsibility for the unfairness of elections and their potential illegitimacy. Of course, such a risk (of responsibility) is always present. However, it becomes most obvious when there are not only circumstantial but also direct evidence (in the form of almost consensus from those legal professionals who spoke out in the Patria case) that the trial, which has been suspect from the very start, was concluded as a flagrantly unfair one, and that it should never even have started in the first place. The chronology of the Patria case is rather long and complex, yet without it we cannot understand the controversy of the conduct of the Constitutional Court, the ordinary courts, the prosecution and those most pertinent experts in criminal law who should have been the first to raise their voices to stop the trial as it was developing with disrespect to legal standards. The Patria case was launched, and has developed ever since, as a sensational media story and an explosive political affair. It has always gained momentum before elections, then temporarily subsided only to be reignited time and time again. It has been an instrument of political struggle which, on the one hand, would not be that unusual even for a democracy of the western type. On the other hand, in such a democracy with a plural media space, the case would have come to a rightful conclusion much earlier. In Slovenia, the case is still dragging on even though it has been clear for a long time that the letter J from the Finnish TV documentary does not mean ‘Janša’, but some Croatian businessman ‘Jerković’. The case started to interest lawyers only once it acquired legal dimensions. This happened when the indictment was filed. It was filed by the wife of the former communist secret police agent who 25 years ago pursued and arrested the first-indicted in the Patria case. The content of the indictment was unprecedented for the wider public: it contained an unknown time, place and means. At least to me, it was clear from the very start that such an indictment should not and cannot become part of established practice (unless we are bringing about a Kafkaesque reality). I introduced this opinion at an event of the Academic Lawyers’ Association at the University of Ljubljana which was almost cancelled due to pressure from unnamed, but supposedly very respected Slovenian lawyers. The stakes were obviously high. This is further confirmed by the conduct of the parties of the trial. The prosecution took up work at full steam. According to the latest claims of the defence (which were contested by the prosecution) it went so far as handpicking mainly incriminating documents. Should these claims be confirmed, it would be a clear case of a breach of the principle of equality of arms. The indicted and his party on the other hand took a defensive stance, combined with periodical verbally sharp and symbolic attacks on the judiciary. The latter has defended itself in an auto-poetic and self-sufficient way and has tried to hide their faces from the public. Occasionally, however, this defensive pose was interrupted by some excesses. Since these were already comprehensively documented by Vlad Perju from Boston College, I do not intend to repeat them here. However, it is worth singling out the example of a Higher Court judge who publicly congratulated the District Court judge for the courageous sentencing (then not yet legally binding); and who likened the protest of the supporters of the sentenced in front of the court to the hysterical reactions of North Korean children at the visits of Kim Jong Un. It goes without saying that such behavior from a judge of the Higher Court does not contribute to the appearance of impartiality of the judiciary, one of the postulates of a fair trial. The appearance of impartiality was compromised even more directly with the thunderous performance of the President of the Supreme Court in front of a crowd of judges gathered at the annual event "Days of Judiciary". He used that occasion for tirades against both the defendant, who at the time had an open deadline for a request for extraordinary legal remedy at the Supreme Court, as well as against one of the constitutional judges. In addition, the very same supreme public prosecutor who achieved the final sentence in the Patria case and is also likely to be involved in the extraordinary legal remedy proceedings also took part at the event. Justice Deisinger is thus right to point out that all of the above casts strong doubt on whether the complainant's right to a fair trial can actually be guaranteed under these circumstances. This doubt is reaffirmed in the above mentioned independent opinion of Vlad Perju. It is also echoed in cautions coming from some Slovenian professional organizations. Such opinions did not find expression in the main Slovenian media outlets: the latter reported on the Patria case practically in terms of the presumption of guilt. Despite the fact that the process has been suspect and conducted in a legally unusual manner from its very beginning, and despite warnings from prominent legal experts including self-professed political opponents of the accused, a different narrative prevailed in the media. That this is a case of corruption where direct evidence is by the very nature of things impossible; and that the judiciary should be trusted and respected even when it delivers a sentence exclusively on the basis of circumstantial evidence and even when the sentence relates to a criminal act, committed in a way that does not even require description, since it has been sufficiently defined in the abstract legal provision of a Penal Code. 54 In a number of instances an impression (by the media at least) was created that all of the above, as unusual as it might appear, is permissible - in regard to this very convict at any rate. According to prevailing public opinion, perpetuated among others by influential opinion leaders and intellectuals, he should probably have been put behind bars long ago, at least for the alleged, but never proven, arms deals during the Slovenian independence war. To sum up, the legal and political dimensions of the Patria case have been intertwined all along. This was also achieved in part by the extreme restraint of the academic legal profession. In my opinion, the latter has traditionally proven to be sterile and practically silent, be it in cases of momentous decisions of the courts or else in other seismic legal developments in Slovenian society. The Patria case is an example of such a paradigmatic case which, according to the unwritten rule established by the profession, is not to be discussed. Due to the circumstances of the case, those of us who did talk about it are labelled as a priori political, supposedly “right-wing” lawyers, as “the black ones” and due to the person in the trial as “janšist”. The label is attached regardless of the substance of our analyses - truth be told, they were not all equally convincing. On the other hand the “left-wing” lawyers seem not to exist, nor are there any “left-wing” academics. The latter are publicly presented as neutral, although, as it transpires later on, the nature of their employment puts them in an open conflict of interests. All of these, along with the silent majority of the academic legal profession, are and remain neutral, non-political and therefore professional. Such labels are insincere and unfounded. It is perfectly clear that every personally mature individual, in particular a lawyer, does not only have his own worldview but also his political convictions. Every legal expert, in particular a university professor who educates future generations of students, should also have his own professional academic integrity, which obliges him to overcome his political views and to uphold what is right. Without this, if society lacks an intellectual nucleus, especially among lawyers, to coherently champion values and principles and what is right (as derived at least from the Constitution), if morality and ethics were made obsolete in the spirit of positivism, then truly anything is permissible and possible in such a society, especially if you are in the minority or in opposition. Thus it is also possible that nobody is particularly upset when three constitutional judges and some of their former colleagues describe the proceedings in the Patria case as flagrantly unfair. Nobody is particularly troubled when the majority at the Constitutional Court rejects a constitutional complaint out of trust that the Supreme Court will guarantee effective legal protection anyway. The latter, however, does practically nothing, quoting holidays (sic!) among other reasons. It publicly rebukes the convict, already imprisoned, that this is his own fault since he did not use another legal remedy (at the District Court) for withholding the imprisonment. This entire farce would not have taken place had the pertinent distinguished legal experts, especially university professors from the areas related to the Patria case, explained publicly at the very outset what Justice Zobec has written: “In our country (as well as elsewhere in the normal, civilized world) nobody should be sentenced for an abstract act. In our country, someone could only be sentenced for their actual actions. This is something so self-evident […]” Instead, the process, which according to the opinion of distinguished legal experts should not have been initiated to begin with, has taken a full four years, moving from one instance of jurisdiction to another, and it is still not finished. It is at least and indeed extremely unusual that even the Constitutional Court doesn't realise what irreparable consequences might affect the petitioner, an eminent politician (mostly in opposition), who goes from election to election encumbered by the weight of a “legally non-existing” process. As the former constitutional Justice Krivic wrote, it is not only the prerogative of Janša's voters but also the right of his opponents to know the truth about the legal untenability of this process. Otherwise, in particular in the context of the unbalanced media presentation, the process has a fatal impact on voting preferences, it distorts them and in fact distorts the legitimacy of the democratic process. This consequently deforms the parliamentary political process, founded on fair elections and the outcomes of such process. In the last instance, democracy itself is distorted. It is therefore in everybody's interest that the Patria case comes to a legally binding conclusion with a substantive decision. It is also in everybody's interest to dissolve any doubts as to whether the complainant has or has not committed the criminal act. It is in everybody's interest to eliminate any suspicion that the Patria case might be a politically motivated trial. Given all the circumstances of the case it is not unusual for a reasonable person to share the concern of our most prominent writer Drago Jančar, who writes apprehensively: “There is every indication that this is a case of political trial. Beyond circumstantial evidence, there is unambiguous direct evidence for this. It is hard to believe that this is possible in a democratic country.” I still try to believe that it is not possible and I share the view of Justice Deisinger that this suspicion will be refuted by the Slovenian judiciary itself: “The decision of the Court in regard to withholding or the suspension of theimprisonment will in itself demonstrate on an empirical level whether the position of the Constitutional Court on effective legal remedy with the request for the protection of legality is confirmed or refuted. The later the pronouncement of the breach of the Constitution or the European Convention on Human Rights – be it at a particular instance of the proceedings, constitutional review or through the European Court of Human Rights decision - the harder the consequences will be for the whole judiciary. What if the entire criminal proceedings against the complainant from the filing of the indictment onwards transpires to have been illegal, in contradiction with the Constitution and the European Convention on Human Rights, along with violating human rights? An impartial judiciary should keep this fallout in mind when it makes decision.” VII. Vestiges of the Past – Burdens for the Present An impartial and independent judiciary in a well-ordered, normal, constitutional democracy should also be aware that its quality depends first and foremost upon itself and its corrective mechanisms. The judiciary should not be subjected to just any criticism, especially if it is vacuously rude or inexact. But it can be a subject to well-argued criticism. Albeit supposedly the weakest branch, judiciary is a form of power too. However, historic cases, when human rights were grossly violated on Slovenian soil with the support of or even through the judiciary, are not rare. This part of our recent history remains unresolved and it is still painful and traumatic to many. Representatives of the judiciary should thus avoid rehashing and reviving it with, at the minimum, irresponsible if not un-constitutional behavior, such as dressing up as Tito’s pioneers and dancing with the flag of the former Yugoslavia.The same also applies to presumed personal or at least ideological continuity with the former regime - something that a significant proportion of the public is strongly convinced about - and not unjustifiably. The most honorable and virtuous solution to this challenge was proposed by Silvij Šikovec, the judge who in the former regime convicted two priests for blessing a memorial to “national traitors.” This is what he said when parts of the public criticized the appointment of the Head of the Slovenian Prosecution Zvonko Fišer, who brought the indictment in that case: “Even at this time, after 31 years, I do not want to comment on my decision at all. It was made in a particular time and place and founded on different legislation. It speaks, however, as any other decision, also about me, the judge who was deciding in this case. We cannot change the past, but we can learn from it. In this sense I find lacking, even in times after the democratic change, a serious and thorough discussion about human rights violations. The discussion should take place within the judiciary in particular, with no political divisions.” According to media reports, he also concluded: “On a symbolic level, especially from the perspective of those affected, the feeling that nothing has really changed is growing stronger. Twenty years after the change of the system, I personally don't see the need for those of us who held high judicial offices in the former system to run for such offices now. Especially if this triggers reactions which could raise doubts about the functioning of the rule of law and protection of human rights.” Were this actually to be the case, the throwing around of terms such as “Murgle trials” in the public space could be stopped as well as suspicions about the (im)partiality of the judiciary that re-appear time and time again from this or the other side. It would enable us to publicly acknowledge that what was evidently an inadequate break with the past, along with extremely high retention rates of elites, led to the current situation in which our judiciary, as well as practically the entire state and in fact civil-society apparatus, are filled with people who are directly or indirectly in different ways, most often even through family relations, connected with the personnel of the old political set.  This should be publicly acknowledged as a challenge which needs an adequate, organic and constitutional solution. The Slovenian judiciary would thus improve its reputation on the symbolic level itself, something that would probably be reaffirmed through judicial statistics – an area that causes concern due to figures both from home courts and the courts abroad. Until this actually happens, the state of the Slovenian judiciary is probably very close to the depiction from the Op-ed “Mehki trebuh” by Justice Zobec. 67As the old saying goes: don’t kill the messenger. He or she cannot be guilty for bringing the news about a given situation and going at him will change nothing. What is needed instead is a well-argued, self-reflective, and above all self-critical discussion about the assertions from this article. Such discussion could be very sharp, but it has to be conducted in good faith in order to allow the forming of such a legal order, both in theory and in practice, as required by the Slovenian Constitution. The onus is on all of us: in particular the lawyers holding key offices at institutions of state and those at our universities. It is our duty to assure that legal proceedings are not exploited or even misused for political objectives, such as the elimination of a political opponent which increasingly appears to be the case in the Patria case. It is also our duty to guarantee effective and lawful prosecution of crimes, especially in the economy and politics, holding everybody who has been legally proven guilty accountable for their actions. It is imperative to relieve Slovenia of the burden of a hijacked state. This is the context within which the Patria case took place. It includes the Constitutional Court, which (due to the above mentioned reasons and thanks to six of its members) failed to complete its task as required by the best understanding of the constitutional law in the Slovenian context. The onus, on the basis of explicit trust of the Constitutional Court, is now upon the Supreme Court. If the latter fails to complete the task, Slovenia will be in serious peril of reaching such levels of unfairness and legal untenability in regard to the personal freedom of the imprisoned individual, as well as in regard to fair and legitimate elections, that in a metaphorical sense the Slovenian Rubicon of the Radbruch formula could even be transgressed. Given the already too-high levels of unfairness and legal untenability, Slovenia is beginning to be talked and reported about as the only EU Member State with a political prisoner, we should not allow ourselves any further slipping downwards.

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Prvi shod Odbora 2014 pred sodiščem bo 12. oktobra!

Dragi vztrajnice in vztrajniki! Prvi shod Odbora 2014 po počitnicah pred Vrhovnim sodiščem bo 12. oktobra 2017! Že sedaj lepo vabljeni! Jesen je tukaj in novo vztrajniško leto se je začelo. Čaka nas ogromno dela, saj se krivice, oškodovanja ter zlorabe sodne in politične moči vrstijo. Kot veste smo bili dogovorjeni, da bomo imeli 14. 9. prvi shod v novem vztrajniškem letu. Verjamem, da se prvega shoda vsi veselimo! A letošnji september je neverjetno poln aktivnosti in dogodkov, ki so že vnaprej določeni in so povezani predvsem s predsedniškimi volitvami in referendumom o enem tiru. Organizacijsko vodstvo Odbora 2014 in jaz osebno smo v te aktivnosti polno vpeti, zato prosim, da z razumevanjem sprejmete odločitev, da je prvi shod Odbora 2014  pred Vrhovnim sodiščem v novem vztrajniškem letu prestavljen na četrtek 12. oktobra 2017, ob 17.00. Vem, da je to za veliko večino med nami žalostna informacija, če ne kar šok. Tudi sam sem jo težko sprejel, a enostavno je načrtovanih aktivnosti preveč, da bi lahko shod pripravili tako kot smo navajeni. Se vidimo 12. oktobra ob 17.00 pred Vrhodnim sodiščem! Kot vedno: mirno, kulturno in dostojanstveno, a odločno in nepopustljivo v zavzemanju za resnico in pravico.

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13.09.2017

Pravosodni trk v ledeno goro

23. 11. 2014 | Bogomir Štefanič ml. | Slovenski čas Dr. Damir Črnčec, predsednik Odbora 2014 Obramboslovec in politolog dr. Damir Črnčec je v javnosti znan kot profesor na Fakulteti za državne in evropske študije, sodelavec izobraževalnega programa Slovenske vojske, dvakrat (2005 in 2010) je bil direktor Obveščevalno-varnostne službe Ministrstva za obrambo, v letih 2012 in 2013 direktor Slovenske obveščevalno-varnostne agencije, je predsednik društva Evropska Slovenija, pisec številnih strokovnih in publicističnih prispevkov, zlasti s področja mednarodne in nacionalne varnosti. Slovenski čas ga je k pogovoru povabil v drugi vlogi: kot predsednika Odbora za varstvo človekovih pravic in temeljnih svoboščin – Odbora 2014, ki si, spodbujen z zadevo Patria, prizadeva za korenite spremembe slovenskega pravosodja.Pogovarjava se ob 25. obletnici padca berlinskega zidu. Takrat ste bili stari šele šestnajst let ...Tako čas padca berlinskega zidu kot potem ves proces pred osamosvojitvijo leta 1991 sem res spremljal še precej mlad, a sem se dobro zavedal, da so to prelomni dogodki. Seveda pa me je najbolj zaznamovala slovenska osamosvojitev.Ali ste pričakovali, da boste 25 let po začetku procesa demokratizacije protestirali, ker ste prepričani, da ima samostojna slovenska država ta čas spet na vesti politične zapornike – obsojence v zadevi Patria?Vsekakor tega ne bi mogel pričakovati, pa saj takrat o tem, ker sem bil le premlad, nisem niti razmišljal. Vaše vprašanje pa natančno zadene občutke starejših kolegov, ki so z nami v odboru za varstvo človekovih pravic in temeljnih svobodiščin, Odboru 2014, in so bili ob koncu 80. let v prvih vrstah v prizadevanju za demokratizacijo, spremembo političnega sistema, kot so Alenka Puhar, mag. Drago Demšar, David Tasič … V pogovorih so večkrat dejali, da si, ko smo dobili svojo državo, ki naj bi temeljila na spoštovanju človekovih pravic, nikakor niso predstavljali, da bo potrebno 25 let pozneje ponavljati “vajo iz demokratizacije”.Zakaj je bilo potrebno za Janšo, Krkoviča in Črnkoviča povzdigniti protestniški glas? V pravni državi, kar naj bi Slovenija bila, obstajajo pravne poti, po katerih naj bi imel vsakdo možnost prej ali slej dokazati nedolžnost.Za Slovenijo je napisano, da je socialna država, da je pravna država … Besede na ustavnem papirju dajejo slutiti, da so naši protesti res nekaj nepotrebnega. Ko pa od blizu pogledamo zadevo Patria, kaj vse se je dogajalo s tem procesom na različnih sodnih stopnjah, pridemo do drugačne ugotovitve. Javnost dobro pozna številne kritike, ki so jih o tej sodbi izrekli ugledni pravniki, tudi trije ustavni sodniki v ločenih mnenjih k sicer zavrnjeni prvi zahtevi za varstvo zakonitosti. V tem procesu ni dokazov, kaj, kje, kako, za kakšen denar naj bi se nekaj storilo. Nič oprijemljivega, vsa kozlovska sodba temelji na indicih, na frazi “naj bi”, torej na neki kafkansko-orwelovski novelistični zgodbi …Če pa k temu dodamo, kdo so akterji te zgodbe, se pojavijo dodatni pomisleki. Na čelu vrhovnega sodišča imamo človeka, ki je v prejšnjem režimu dokazano kršil človekove pravice, v našem odboru pa smo na podlagi odločitev ustavnega sodišča dokazali, da je sodeloval v senatih, ki so kršili človekove pravice tudi v demokraciji. Na vrhu tožilstva imamo človeka, ki je preganjal duhovnike, ki so v 70. letih blagoslovili križ in molili ob prikritem grobišču – in to je človek, ki je v demokraciji predstojnik najvišje tožilske instance, ki je vodila postopek zoper Janeza Janšo in soobtožene. Tudi zaradi takih stvari se ne moremo znebiti vtisa, da je to politično montirani proces, v marsičem podoben tistim, ki jih je uprizarjala nekdanja komunistična oblast, ki so ji bili prej omenjeni akterji zelo blizu oziroma so bili celo njen del.Slovenska posebnost?Da. Letos septembra smo v društvu Evropska Slovenija organizirali mednarodno konferenco o pravni državi in izzivih, s katerimi se soočajo demokracije, ki so zamenjale politične sisteme. Kolegica, profesorica prava s prestižne berlinske univerze, je povedala, da so v vzhodnem delu Nemčije po letu 1990 umaknili ne le vse kazenske sodnike, temveč so s fakultet odstranili tudi nekdanje profesorje, ker je prevladala ocena, da niso ne eni ne drugi sposobni procesirati prava demokratične države in družbe. Ko so se odstranjeni pritožili, je tudi nemško ustavno sodišče potrdilo, da niso kompetentni, da sodijo v demokraciji. Podoben primer se je nedavno znašel pred Evropskim sodiščem za človekove pravice (ESČP). To je jasno zastopalo stališče, da nekdo, ki je deloval v nekdanji totalitarni varnostni službi, v konkretnem primeru gre za romunsko Securitate, ne more zasesti javne funkcije v demokraciji. Če neki zakon to prepoveduje, je ustrezen in ni v nasprotju z evropsko konvencijo o človekovih pravicah.Že slišim ugovor slovenskih sodnikov, češ, saj je edino lustracijsko določilo doletelo prav nas, in sicer v zakonu o sodniški službi, ki ni dovoljeval, da bi bili v trajni mandat izvoljeni sodniki, ki so v prejšnjem režimu pri sojenju kršili človekove pravice.A kot dobro veste, se ta zakon v praksi sploh ni izvajal. Ali bi bil ob dosledni uporabi tega določila sedanji predsednik vrhovnega sodišča sploh lahko sodnik?! Tako pa je vso bedo vrha vrhovnega sodišča naplavil prav postopek izločitve Branka Masleše iz zahteve za varstvo zakonitosti v zadevi Patria. Občna seja vrhovnega sodišča je bila prvič nesklepčna, ker so bili sodniki poleti na dopustu, ko so se po dopustu spočiti vrnili, pa so večinsko ocenili, da je Masleša lahko predstojnik senata, ki je odločal o pritožbi Janeza Janše – torej o pritožbi nekoga, ki je javno in argumentirano nasprotoval temu, da bi Masleša sploh zasedel ta položaj. Imamo cel kup dokazov, da je njegovo sojenje vprašljivo. Z vidika prakse ESČP je njegovo imenovanje v senat popolnoma v nasprotju z načelom poštenega sojenja in nepristranskosti sodišča. Pri tem me je najbolj presenetilo to, da so skoraj vsi vrhovni sodniki – če se ne motim, so bili proti le štirje – podprli, da se Masleše ne izloči iz odločanja v zadevi Patria. Ko bo sodba zoper Janšo padla na ustavnem sodišču ali ESČP, se bo jasno pokazalo, da velika večina vrhovnih sodnikov ne razume, kaj pomeni vladavina prava, kaj pomeni pošteno in nepristransko sojenje.Ali so prizadevanja Odbora 2014 osredinjena le na obsojence v zadevi Patria? Tudi sedanji pravosodni minister vam očita, da radikalizirate razpravo o stanju v pravosodju le zaradi enega “politika v zaporu”.V odboru smo predstavili številne statistične podatke, ki kažejo na splošno stanje v pravosodju. Ti podatki so res grozljivi in nimajo pred seboj le enega človeka. Prof. Lovro Šturm je v svoji študiji ugotovil, da so slovenska sodišča v zadnjih 15 letih v različnih sestavah in senatih najmanj 613-krat kršila človekove pravice, kar izhaja iz odločitev slovenskega ustavnega sodišča. Verjemite, da je bilo kršitev še precej več, a zaradi različnih razlogov vseh podatkov še nimamo. Drugi podatek: slovenska sodišča so v skoraj 300 primerih izgubila proces pred ESČP zaradi kršitev človekovih pravic. Slovenija je po tej statistiki glede na število prebivalcev na neslavnem tretjem mestu med vsemi državami Sveta Evrope – slabši sta le Turčija in Rusija. Naslednji zgovorni podatek: študija Svetovnega ekonomskega foruma je ugotovila, da je Slovenija na 91. mestu po zagotavljanju pravne države, študija Svetovne banke pa, da so slovenska sodišča in celotno pravosodje na 122. mestu glede učinkovitosti reševanja sodnih sporov. Tudi varuhinja človekovih pravic ugotavlja, da so pritožbe zoper delovanje pravosodnih organov, ki pridejo pred njen urad, v 7,4-odstotnem deležu upravičene.Nabor teh podatkov jasno kaže, da pri kritičnem presojanju pravosodja ne gre le za primer Janeza Janše in drugih obsojenih v zadevi Patria, temveč da je slovenska tretja veja oblasti tudi v demokraciji velik kršitelj človekovih pravic. Ne nazadnje: samo četrtina prebivalcev Slovenije zaupa takšnemu pravosodju. Zaradi vseh nas je skrajni čas, da se teh problemov lotimo resno in temeljito. Primer Patria je le vrh ledene gore in je bil sprožilec, ki je pripeljal do tega, da smo sistematično odprli to rakavo rano slovenske družbe.Statistika, ki ste jo predstavili, je nekakšna “diagnoza” te rane, “terapijo” pa prinaša peticija za pravično družbo in državo vladavine prava, ki ste jo javnosti ponudili v presojo in podpis v začetku novembra. Kaj so temeljne zahteve te peticije?Celotno peticijo je mogoče prebrati in jo tudi podpisati na naši spletni strani www.odbor2014.si. Naj peticijo v njenih predlogih, kako naprej, na kratko povzamem. Prva in ključna zahteva je preglednost in popolna javnost sojenja in sodnih odločitev. Zahtevamo javni prenos sojenj razen v izjemnih primerih, kot so sojenja, v katerih sodelujejo mladoletne osebe. Želimo izvedeti imena sodnikov, ki so kršili človekove pravice. Za 613 primerov kršenja človekovih pravic, ki sem jih že omenil, smo po zakonu o dostopu do informacij javnega značaja že zahtevali podatke, kdo so bili sodniki, ki so sodelovali v teh senatih, sedaj pa še zahtevamo, da se razkrije, kako so glasovali posamezni člani senatov. Žalostno je, da lahko izvemo, kako so glasovali sodniki ustavnega sodišča (ti lahko napišejo tudi ločena mnenja), ne moremo pa izvedeti, kako so glasovali v senatih vrhovnega sodišča, višjega sodišča … Prav nobenega razloga ni, da tega ne bi smeli videti in vedeti. Vpogled v to bi nam omogočil, da jasno povemo, kateri sodnik je odgovoren za kršitve. Zato tudi zahtevamo, da ocena sodniške službe postane javna. Tu se srečujemo z anomalijo sodnega sveta, v katerem je premalo zastopana javnost. Sodni svet odloča o morebitni prekinitvi trajnega mandata sodnikov, čeprav jih imenuje državni zbor. Po našem mnenju to ni prav: tisti, ki te imenuje, naj te tudi razrešuje, pri tem pa naj bo postopek javen in pregleden, zakaj in kako je prišlo do imenovanja ter zakaj in kako je prišlo do razrešitve. Videti želimo celoten življenjepis sodnikov in njihove letne ocene, ki se pišejo znotraj sodstva, a ostajajo javnosti zaprte. Le zakaj, če pa so sodniki funkcionarji, kot so poslanci in ministri. O poslancih in ministrih vemo skorajda vse, o sodnikih pa je na primer greh vedeti, kakšno je njegovo premoženje …Ali terjate tudi odgovornost za napačne sodniške odločitve?Zahtevamo jasen sistem odgovornosti, ki bo omogočal presojo, ali je šlo v nekem primeru le za posameznem strokovno napako ali pa se pri določenem sodniku srečujemo z vzorcem ravnanj, ko je teh napak precej več, kot bi bilo še dopustno na podlagi normalne statistike. Ne govorimo le o sodnikih, temveč vsaj še o tožilcih.Ali prav razumem: Pravosodju, ki vztraja v slonokoščenem stolpu nedotakljivosti, želite dati obraz?Res je. Državljani imamo pravico videti ta obraz, vedeti, kaj kdo v pravosodju počne, slišati, kako to počne. Saj ne zahtevamo nič posebnega. Javnost delovanja sodne veje oblasti je trend in praksa tudi drugod na Zahodu.Težave, na katere opozarjate, seveda niso od včeraj. Ali se kdaj spomnite nemškega sodnika Normana Doukoffa, ki je leta 2003 v času slovenskega pridruževanja Evropski zvezi postavil podobno diagnozo: da je sodni sistem v Sloveniji neučinkovit, čeprav imamo sorazmerno zelo veliko sodnikov, ki pa se pri nas bolj ukvarjajo s ščitenjem lastnih privilegijev in plač kot s čim drugim ... Ko je javno predstavil to kritiko, je “padlo” po njem – podobno kot po Odboru 2014.Seveda se spomnim teh ugotovitev. Nesrečni zgodbi o slovenskem pravosodju lahko dodamo tudi finančni vidik, na katerega opozarjate: imamo največ sodnikov glede na številko prebivalstva v Evropski zvezi, to pomeni, da imamo najdražji sodni sistem (dvakrat dražji, kot je povprečje v povezavi), ki je pa hkrati najmanj učinkovit. Gospodarski sodni spori v povprečju trajajo skorajda štiri leta in so dokazano škodljivi za slovensko gospodarstvo.Ob kritičnih ugotovitvah tujih raziskav, ki se vrstijo že več kot desetletje, se nisem mogel ubraniti smehu, ko sem v enem izmed številnih mainstream medijev, ki skušajo zagovarjati oblastna stališča, prebral, kako so dobili neko novo raziskavo, po kateri naj bi se ugled našega pravosodja bistveno dvignil. Takšne stvari bomo v trobilih tipa Delo ali Dnevnik v prihodnje zelo verjetno brali vedno pogosteje. Bralcem svetujem, naj se na to propagando ne ozirajo; verodostojno ogledalo nam postavlja tujina. Odločitve ESČP, ocene Svetovne banke in Svetovnega ekonomskega foruma so neizprosni pokazatelji, kje smo in kam gremo.Še to: od takrat, ko je nemški strokovnjak Norman Doukoff predstavil kritični pogled na slovensko pravosodje, so šle stvari le še na slabše. Pa saj se tudi sodniki sami – vsaj tisti, ki premorejo kanček samokritičnosti, vem, da je takih kar nekaj – tega dobro zavedajo. Poslanec državnega zbora je na spletnih portalih objavil zapis neke sodnice, ki je sama ocenila, da imajo sodniki premalo dela, da imajo premajhen pripad zadev. Enako velja za tožilstvo. To povedo tudi meni. Hkrati pa poslušamo, da je v pravosodju zaposlenih premalo ljudi.Nastavljanje kritičnega ogledala slovenskemu pravosodju je naporno opravilo, ampak pri tem bomo vztrajali, kot smo doslej – že 140 dni (pogovor je bil posnet 6. novembra; op. B. Š.), odkar imamo edinega političnega zapornika v Evropski uniji.Ali je to protestniško vztrajanje že rušenje neodvisne tretje veje oblasti, kot vam očitajo?To so tragikomični očitki pravosodne oblastniške vrhuške. Najprej so nam govorili, da sploh ne smemo demonstrirati, potem so nam povedali, da ne smemo kritizirati njihovih sodb. Pa saj prav to počne denimo predsednik ZDA v svojih nagovorih kongresu. ESČP je v svojih sodbah jasno povedalo, da so gospe in gospodje sodniki tretja veja oblasti, da so torej funkcionarji, plačani iz državnega proračuna, in da zato lahko javnost kadar koli kritizira njih in njihovo delo – skorajda tako, kot kritizira politike: parlamentarce in ministre. Kaj smo dosegli v 140 dneh? Da danes nihče, kdor je vsaj malo demokrata, več resno ne postavlja vprašanja, ali sploh smemo protestirati pred vrhovnim sodiščem in javno kritizirati sodbe. Nekaj se je torej že premaknilo ...Pogovarjava se neposredno po tem, ko je vrhovno sodišče – sicer spet s pregovorno zamudo – objavilo razsodbo v zahtevi za varstvo zakonitosti v zadevi Patria. Neuradni podatek o zavrnjeni zahtevi je zdaj tudi uraden. Ali ta odločitev kakor koli spreminja prizadevanja Odbora 2014?Ne. Peticija, o kateri sva se prej pogovarjala, je spodbuda, imperativ za nadaljnje delo. V Odboru 2014 bomo na tej podlagi pripravili predlog normativnih sprememb. Peticija je torej širši strateški okvir, ki se bo konkretiziral s spremembami zakonodaje, ki bo omogočila vse to, kar predlagamo. Kar zadevo sámo odločitev vrhovnega sodišča v zadevi Patria, pa: moje mnenje je bilo vsekozi, da je pod vodstvom Branka Masleše žal nemogoče pričakovati pošteno, nepristransko odločitev. Upam, da bo zdaj ustavno sodišče zmoglo sprejeti odločitev na podlagi tega, kar je večina ustavnih sodnikov že zapisala, ko so zavrgli prvo pritožbo – namreč da so v sodbi znaki hujših kršitev človekovih pravic, ki so jih določneje opredelili trije ustavni sodniki v ločenih mnenjih. Če prej ne, se bo to izkazalo na ESČP. Od tam je danes prišla nova klofuta: pet sodb, v katerih je Sloveniji očitano kršenje pravic zapornikov.Te dni ste se odločili za internacionalizacijo svojih prizadevanj. Z demonstracijami v Ženevi je Odbor 2014 pospremil nastop ministra za pravosodje Gorana Klemenčiča, ki je na zasedanju medvladne delovne skupine Sveta Združenih narodov za človekove pravice v Ženevi predstavljal stanje človekovih pravic v naši državi. Kaj si obetate od takšnih akcij v tujini?Ozaveščanje mednarodne javnosti teče že od začetka naših dejavnosti, v zadnjem času smo jo le intenzivirali. A kaj dosti niti ni treba opozarjati, kajti ključni odločevalci v demokratični Evropi vedo, kaj se pri nas dogaja, seznanjeni so tudi s statistiko, o kateri sva prej govorila. In ko temu dodamo še slab gospodarski položaj, je vsem jasno, da država, ki je bila včasih zgled uspešne tranzicijske države in je s pohvalami leta 2008 predsedovala Svetu Evropske unije, ni več to, kar je bila. Postali smo bolnik Evrope. Iz evropske Slovenije vse bolj postajamo balkanska Slovenija. Pri čemer balkanizacijo v duhu Slovarja slovenskega knjižnega jezika razumem kot neurejenost – pravno in še kakšno.Morda še en primer, kako nas vidijo iz tujine. Dekan finske pravne fakultete, ki je bil na konferenci, ki sva jo že omenila, je bil v prispevku na nacionalni televiziji zmanipuliran glede tega, kar je dejansko govoril na posvetu. Ko je naslednji dan ugotovil, kaj se je zgodilo, je tvitnil nekako tako: Da razumeš Slovenijo, torej postkomunistično državo in njeno pravo, moraš razumeti tudi to, da v komunizmu ni bilo prava. Prišel je z eno percepcijo naše države, odšel pa z drugačno, resnično – slabo. Ni bil edini, ki je to doživel.Pravosodni minister, tako se zdi, ni bil najbolj srečen, ker ste ga v Ženevi pospremili z demonstracijami. Hkrati pa je ob dnevu pravosodja, ki s(m)o ga praznovali 4. novembra, na nacionalni televiziji trdil, da se niste pripravljeni srečati z njim v osebnem pogovoru, čeprav naj bi vam menda odprl vrata svoje pisarne.Zelo smo zadovoljni, da se je pravosodni minister končno uspel odzvati na naše pobude, čeprav se je odzval pričakovano – oblastniško arogantno in z zavajanjem. Vabila za srečanje nam doslej še ni dal. Govoril je v slogu, češ če bomo v odboru izrazili interes za pogovor, nas bo sprejel. V odboru smo ministra javno pozvali k podpisu peticije, ki smo jo pripravili. Upamo, da bo minister, v dobro nas vseh, zmogel pripraviti predlog ukrepov, kot jih predvideva peticija.Ali v sedanji oblasti sploh vidite pripravljenost za uresničitev sprememb, ki jih predlagate?Iskreno povedano: ne. Po vsej verjetnosti bi bilo mogoče potencial za take spremembe zbrati le okoli nečesa, kar bi lahko imenovali Demos 2.0 – v novi opoziciji, ki bi črpala iz demokratizacijskih korenin poznih 80. in začetka 90. let prejšnjega stoletja in bi kot prvi Demos povezovala široko demokratično pahljačo. V tistem času je to bilo šest strank in enajst posameznikov, ki se je podpisalo pod ustanovitev Demosa.A ob tem ne smemo pozabiti nečesa, na kar je hote ali nehote opozoril dolgoletni ideolog Socialnih demokratov dr. Igor Lukšič, ko je v nedavnem intervjuju govoril o temeljnem merilu, po katerem kontinuitetni vplivneži ravnajo v slovenskem političnem prostoru: ni namreč važno, iz katere stranke je kdo, ki leze na površje, “samo da ni iz stranke Janeza Janše”, dokler pa Janša ni bil glavni igralec, pa je bilo pomembno, “da ni bil iz cerkvene stranke”. Ker Janša, ki so ga spravili v zapor, ne more biti več sovražnik številka ena, se sprašujem: Ali bodo zdaj spet prvi nasprotnik “cerkvene stranke”?! Torej lahko pričakujemo, da bomo tarča znova mi, kristjani?! To je diskurz, ki je sam po sebi grozljiv, nesprejemljiv za moderno evropsko državo. Dobro upravljanje evropske Slovenije izključuje take manipulacije, pa tudi to, da se kazenski pregon in druga kazenska sredstva uporablja kot orodje političnega boja.Če je srečanje s pravosodnim ministrom še vedno nekoliko “v zraku”, pa ostaja dejstvo, da ste se srečali denimo s predsednico sodniškega društva, varuhinjo človekovih pravic. Nekateri so vam vendarle pripravljeni prisluhiti.Sprejel nas je tudi predsednik republike. Z vsemi želimo biti v dialogu in zahvaljujemo se vsem, ki to željo spoštujejo in se z nami pogovarjajo. Ampak saj veste, kaj pravi ljudska modrost: besede so poceni. Pričakujemo, da prijaznim nasmeškom sledijo tudi dejanja. Predsednica sodniškega društva je dejala, da se bodo aktivno odzvali na naše pobude. Mi potrpežljivo čakamo. Mimogrede: na sestanku je povedala, da so tudi oni predstavniki civilne družbe, na kar sem ji lahko le odvrnil, da je 24 ur na dan, sedem dni v tednu in 365 dni v letu sodni funkcionar, ne pa predstavnica civilne družbe.Tudi na Odbor 2014 leti očitek, da niste prava, neodvisna civilna družba, temveč privesek ene stranke. Kakšno je razmerje odbora do političnih strank?V odboru delujemo ljudje različnih svetovnih nazorov in političnih prepričanj. Očitki, ki jih omenjate, so bili zelo glasni denimo tri tedne pred volitvami, ko so zaprli voditelja opozicije, češ da je prizadevanje odbora le del predvolilne tekme. Z vztrajanjem dokazujemo, da so bili očitki zlonamerni in zlagani. Nam gre za stvar: za primer obsojenih v zadevi Patria in za to, da se v pravosodju stvari korenito spremenijo na bolje. Kajti tako, kot je, preprosto več ne gre naprej. Samozadostnost in samopašnost tretje veje oblasti se mora enkrat nehati.Kako se financirate?Delo odbora temelji le na prostovoljstvu in prispevkih naših podpornikov. Za razliko od številnih civilnodružbnih organizacij v tej državi ne dobivamo državnih sredstev ali sredstev iz državnih podjetij. Zanje nismo zaprosili in tudi ne bomo. Zahvaljujem se vsem, ki nas podpirajo z udeležbo kot vztrajniki na shodih, nam pišejo spodbudna pisma, darujejo sredstva ... Doslej nas je bilo na različnih shodih pred vrhovnim sodiščem in pred desetimi okrožnimi sodišči že 60.000. Podpirajo nas tudi Slovenci, ki živijo v tujini: v ZDA, Kanadi, Avstraliji, Avstriji, Italiji, Švici, Nemčiji in drugih državah. Hvala vsem!Čim dlje vztrajate, tem večje je tveganje, da boste tarče osebnih diskreditacij.To velja zlasti za vas in kolega Aleša Primca, sicer voditelja Civilne iniciative za družino in pravice otrok. Ne bi bili prvi, ki bi vas doletel “medijski umor” ...S kolegom Alešem sva morda res najbolj izpostavljeni figuri sicer heterogene, a hkrati dopolnjujoče se ekipe, v kateri ni nihče nenadomestljiv. Že sva bila deležna “posebne” obravnave: v medijih so nama šteli delovne ure, preverjali, kdaj hodiva na dopust ... Navsedanje je to prav, saj hočeva tudi midva biti pri svojih prizadevanjih popolnoma pregledna. No, včasih pa stvari le gredo predaleč, ko nas recimo kakšen “prominentni” pravni strokovnjak (tj. penolog Dragan Petrovac; op. B. Š.) razglasi za zametek drhali. Našle bi se še kakšne podobne stvari. Diskreditacije oziroma kar metode specialne vojne iz udbaškega arzenala nas spremljajo že od prvega dne. To smo ne tudi pričakovali, a nas ne ovira, da ne bi nadaljevali svojih prizadevanj: mirno in dostojanstveno, a vendar odločno in nepopustljivo.Omenili ste Udbo. Ali se motim, če trdim, da ste postali izrazito “moteči” predvsem po tem, ko ste spomladi 2013 Arhivu Republike Slovenije, ko ga je še vodil Jože Dežman, vi pa ste bili takrat šef Sove, izročili gradivo SDV? Dotaknili ste se nedotakljivih, dregnili v temna početja in interese še vedno vplivnih elit ...Tri dni, preden sem odšel z direktorskega mesta v Sovi, smo arhivu predali več kot sto škatel gradiva, ki jih na Sovi, če bi moji predhodniki spoštovali zakonodajo, več ne bi smelo biti. V tem gradivu so zelo konkretni dokazi o tem, kaj je počela politična policija. Ne nazadnje: v teh škatlah je bil “primer Crnogorac”, ki je pozneje postal tako znan. Najbolj žalosten in razočaran sem bil, ko sem letos ugotovil, da je stranka, ki ima korenine v pomladanski opciji, zagovarjala, da se tudi to gradivo zapre. Prepričan sem, da se lahko le iz razjasnjenih napak preteklosti naučimo, česa ne smemo ponavljati v prihodnosti. Popolna odprtost in preglednost arhivskega gradiva je nujni pogoj, da se bodo stvari začele izboljševati. Po uveljavitvi novele arhivskega zakona pa se jasno kaže, da prepričevanje o tem, kako z njo arhivsko gradivo ne bo zaprto, temveč kvečjemu še bolj dostopno, nima stvarne podlage. Arhiv je zaprt, gradivo, ki ga dobivajo raziskovalci, pa je velikokrat popolnoma počrnjeno oziroma tako “anonimizirano”, da je v veliki meri neuporabno. To je velika škoda za celotno nacijo in sramota za tiste, ki so takšno stanje podprli.Ali ni zgodba o slovenskem pravosodju pa tudi o nekaterih drugih oblastnih segmentih, kot so obveščevalne službe, v veliki meri ponesrečena zaradi “perpetutiranja” miselnosti in kadrov iz prejšnjega sistema v sedanjega; v njej namreč manjka ostra zareza med totalitarnim in demokratičnim. “Slovenija je država, katere pravo temelji na revolucionarnem pravu in ne na tradiciji zahodnoevropske pravne misli,” ste tudi sami ugotavljali na mednarodnem srečanju, ki ga je priredilo društvoEvropska Slovenija. Ostra ugotovitev …... a empirično dokazljiva! Sodniki in akademiki, kot je bil Leonid Pitamic, so bili po letu 1945, po revolucionarnem prevzemu oblasti, izgnani iz slovenske sodne prakse in teorije. Nadomestili so jih revolucionarni pravniki tipa Ljubo Bavcon, ki so še ne tako davno pisali učbenike o tem, kako je pravo namenjeno pregonu nasprotnikov totalitarnega sistema. No, in taki pravniki imajo še danes kabinete na pravni fakulteti, vedrijo in oblačijo v pravosodju. Kaj takega bi bilo v Nemčiji nemogoče. Naš problem je strašen razkorak med tem, kar smo zapisali, in tem, kar smo udejanjili. Preambula ustave napotuje k zarezi med prejšnjim stanjem, ko so bile sistematično kršene človekove pravice, in demokratično Slovenjo, a je nismo uresničili. Kot članica Evropske unije smo zavezani tudi Lizbonski pogodbi, ki jasno pravi, da povezava zajema navdih iz kulturne, verske in humanistične dediščine Evrope, ki temelji na človekovih pravicah, svobodi, demokraciji, enakosti in pravni državi. Iskreno se vprašajmo: Kaj od tega imamo pri nas? Saj imamo formalno demokracijo, dejanske pa ne; saj imamo formalno pravno državo, dejanske pa ne ... Prav zato ker nismo naredili korenitega reza med totalitarnim in demokratičnim.Najboljša ponazoritev tega stanja je dejstvo, da je bivši šef komunistične partije v demokratični državi postal prvi predsednik z dvema mandatoma. Predstavljajte si, da bi bil Ceausescu predsednik demokratične Romunije ali Honecker predsednik kakšne vzhodnonemške deželne vlade ali pa morda kar zvezne ... Še danes nam prav nekdanji tovariši najglasneje razlagajo, kaj je demokracija, nas podučujejo, kdaj in proti komu smemo demonstrirati in kdaj ne. Sprašujem jih: Od kod pa prihajate? Ustava je jasna, njene vrednote so jasne, če jih vi ne razumete, to ne pomeni, da jih nihče ne razume. No, morda pa jih razumejo, pa jih zavestno ne želijo uresničevati, kar je po svoje še slabše ...Izhodišče in ugotovitve tega pogovora o stanju pravne države pri nas so, milo rečeno, pesimistične. Ali je tak tudi vaš pogled na prihodnost?Nedelujoča pravna država, ki bi jo sicer morala zagotavljati tretja veja oblasti, je tista “os zla”, ki se mora nujno zlomiti, da bi odprli vrata drugačni prihodnosti, v kateri bi lahko bolje delovali tudi zakonodajna in izvršna veja oblasti. To je moje trdno prepričanje. Tudi zato smo najvišjim predstavnikom te “osi zla” ob dnevu pravosodja, ko so si sami podeljevali priznanja, podelili črne zvezde – to je simbol potemnjene, nekoč rdeče zvezde. Z njimi želimo opozoriti, da svojega dela niso dobro opravili, da zaradi njih nismo evropska, temveč balkanska Slovenija. Nekoč sem to stanje primerjal z zgodbo o Titaniku. Afera Patria je ledena gora, v katero se je zaletel Titanik slovenskega pravosodja. Prekati v njem, ki mu zagotavljajo, da lahko pluje še nekaj časa, se postopoma polnijo. Raven vode, zelo umazane vode, se v tem Titaniku nezadržno dviguje in prej ali slej bo doživel takšno usodo, kot jo je resnični parnik. A očitno je potreben tak brodolom zatohle miselnosti, vzorcev in tudi ljudi, da bo slovensko pravosodje postalo drugačno, zares pravično in v službi vladavine prava. Zdaj še ni, a iskreno upam, da po prizadevanjih našega odbora in še koga bo.Vprašanje je le, kateri orkester bo igral, ko se bo ladja potapljala. Pravzaprav to sploh ni vprašanje: orkester prevladujočih medijev veselo igra že precej časa ... Slovenski čas, št. 55, letnik 2014 http://www.druzina.si/ICD/spletnastran.nsf/clanek/pravosodni-trk-v-ledeno-goro

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25.04.2017

Ustavna pritožba zoper sodbo v zadevi Patria

Danes je Franci Matoz, odvetnik Janeza Janše, predstavil ustavno pritožbo zoper sodbo v zadevi Patria. Ustavna pritožba je bila vložena zaradi grobega teptanja ustavnih pravic in Evropske konvencija o varstvu človekovih pravic in temeljnih svoboščin (EKČP). Kršitve se nanašajo na pravico do neodvisnega in nepristranskega sodišča, načelo zakonitosti v kazenskem pravu, pravico do obrambe, enako varstvo pravic in načelo nedolžnosti. Kršeni so bili 22., 23., 27., 28. in 29. člen Ustave RS in 6. člen Evropske konvencija o varstvu človekovih pravic in temeljnih svobošči. V Ustavni pritožbi pritožnik NE predlaga izločitve dokazov, ker jih ni, niti razaveljavitve člena zakona, da si ne bi kdo na ta način elegantno opral rok. Ustavna pritožba je odsegljiva na povezavi:

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25.04.2017

Matej Avbelj: Failed Democracy: The Slovenian Patria Case

The affair started in 2008, a few weeks before the general parliamentary elections, when the Slovenian national TV showed a Finnish documentary claiming that the then Slovenian Prime Minister Janez Janša was bribed by the Finnish arms-selling corporation Patria, which was consequently and as a result awarded the contract with the Slovenian government. The documentary identified the recipient of a bribe exclusively with the letter J, that a couple of years later turned out to stand not for Mr. Janša, but for a Croatian businessman Mr. Jerković. Nevertheless, a huge political controversy understandably broke loose. The political scandal made Mr. Janša finish second in that parliamentary election and resulted in the establishment of the government controlled by the political left. It was only two years later that a direct indictment was brought against Mr. Janša by a state prosecutor who is a wife of an agent of the Slovenian communist secret-service police that arrested Mr. Janša as a political dissident during the reign of the communist regime in the late 1980s. The indictment accused Mr. Janša and others involved in the case for having committed a crime of accepting gifts for illegal intermediation pursuant to Art. 269 of the Slovenian Penal Code. However, the indictment raised a lot of controversy as the criminal offence was literally alleged to have been committed on an undetermined date, at an undetermined place and through an undetermined method of communication. This patently constitutionally flawed indictment nevertheless led to a trial at the local court of Ljubljana, which after a number of months (in between local and another parliamentary election) found the defendants guilty. The case was then appealed to the High Court of Ljubljana on all counts, but the High Court confirmed the ruling of the local court as it stood. Mr. Janša has thus been convicted with the force of res judicata exclusively on the basis of circumstantial evidence for having accepted a promise of an unknown award at a vaguely determined time, at an undetermined place and by an undetermined mode of communication to use his influence, then as a Prime Minister, to have a military contract awarded to the Finnish company Patria The decision of the High Court appeared to be vitiated by a number of patent violations of constitutional rights and principles. The High Court openly stated that neither the time nor the place of the alleged criminal offence are constitutive of the crime, since they merely contribute to the individualization and concretization of the crime. The High Court went even further by ruling that the fact that the crime was allegedly committed through an undetermined method of communication is unproblematic, as the act of accepting the award is sufficiently defined in the abstract provision contained in the Penal Code. Moreover, the High Court stressed a number of times that the wording of Art. 269 of the Slovenian Penal Code was open-textured, but instead of construing it narrowly in line with the requirements of lex certa, the Court used it as a way of attributing the criminal act to the defendant. Finally, the High Court at times even appeared to be shifting the burden of proof on the defendant, who has thus been forced to acquit himself from the indictment, which has, as phrased, effectively disabled him to present any alibi or to prepare a meaningful defense. As a result, the defendant Mr. Janša sought a direct relief at the Constitutional Court by filing a constitutional complaint prior exhausting the extraordinary legal remedy at the Supreme Court. In what follows, the paper describes and critically analyzes the decision of the Constitutional Court and the events that followed thereafter. The events that, unfortunately, demonstrate severe rule of law problems in Slovenia and which push this country into the group of the de facto failed constitutional democracies. II. Introduction On June 11 2014 the Constitutional Court of Slovenia ruled 6:3 to reject the constitutional complaint lodged by Janez Janša, the first indicted and convicted by final judgement in the Patria case. The decision Up-373/14-222 led not only to unprecedentedly critical dissenting opinions from the three judges who voted against it, but also spurred criticism from the most prominent lawyers in the country, former justices of the Constitutional Court known in the public for their varied world views. The severity of this internal and external critique alone would call for a detailed analysis. The need for such an analysis is, however, further strengthened by the complexity of the entire context of the Patria case. For almost 8 years this case has burdened Slovenian public space, in media-political, and therefore democratic, terms; and in legal terms for almost half this period. This leads me to undertake the analysis of the decision and of the whole trial through the prism of the law in context approach. This long-established conceptual approach to understanding law is professed in particular, yet not exclusively, by law-and-society scholarship. One of its core tenets is that law is conditioned by its widest social context; the latter, in turn, is simultaneously conditioned by law.3 Selznick thus writes: “If positive law shades into a broader realm of enabling or limiting conditions, thecharacter of the legal order as a whole – positive law plus its premises, institutions, and its sustaining culture – is also framed by and implicated in a particular social and historical context.” We have to keep this context in mind for it is with awareness of, or even with fidelity to, context that we can avoid legal formalism. Plain legal formalism, as we shall see, not only means poor implementation of law, it can also become lawlessness itself. The conduct of the Slovenian judiciary in the Patria case, crowned by the passive permissiveness of the Constitutional Court, has pushed us to the very margins of the Slovenian Radbruch formula. To substantiate this alarming thesis, I shall commence with a description of the Constitutional Court’s controversial decision. I shall then critically examine it: starting from its own premises; then investigating these premises against the case referred to as a precedent in the decision of the Court; and finally in light of the exceptionally critical dissenting opinions. Lastly, I intend to set the decision of the majority at the Constitutional Court in the wider context of the Patria case: the impact on democracy in the Republic of Slovenia and the increasingly revealing picture of the state of the rule of law in Slovenia as constituted (in a legal sense) by all judicial actors, in particular judges, and, of course, the academic legal profession. III. The Decision of the Constitutional Court In this case the Constitutional Court was requested to consider a constitutional complaint lodged before all other legal remedies were exhausted. The legal basis for such exceptional action is stipulated in the second paragraph of Article 51 of the Constitutional Court Act (CCA). This reads: “Before all extraordinary legal remedies have been exhausted, the Constitutional Court may exceptionally decide on a constitutional complaint if the alleged violation is manifest and if irreparable consequences for the complainant would result from the implementation of a certain act.” The petitioner alleged “manifest (prima facies)” violations of the rights from Article 22, the first paragraph of Article 23, Article 27, the first paragraph of Article 28 and Article 29 of the Constitution, as well as Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights. He went on to concretize these violations. He also proposed withholding of the execution of the judgment of the ordinary courts, referring to the irreparable consequences of imprisonment for his personal freedom as well as for the exercise of his passive electoral right in light of the forthcoming parliamentary elections. The Constitutional Court rejected the complaint on the basis that the conditions from the second paragraph of Article 51 of the CCA were not met. The rejection of the complaint consists of several arguments; however, they all seem to create the impression (intentionally or unintentionally) that the majority of the Court strove to find ways to avoid (or postpone) the admission of the constitutional complaint. In its first argument the Constitutional Court dwells at length on the constitutionally defined inter-institutional relationship between the Constitutional Court and the Supreme Court. This relationship is distilled down to the importance of mutual respect between legal institutions, preventing one institution from assuming the tasks of another on the basis of a presumption of distrust. The rejection of the constitutional complaint is thus founded primarily on trust in the Supreme Court, along with the need to respect the division of jurisdiction and in pursuit of the best possible constitutional reasoning. To achieve the latter, the Constitutional Court’s knowledge of the positions and the practices of the ordinary courts, in particular the highest court in the country, are of decisive importance. It is for these constitutionally-structural reasons that the majority of the judges think that the Constitutional Court should exercise restraint in regard to application of the exception from Article 51 of the CCA. In the second argument, the Constitutional Court seeks reasons for restraint in the wording of Article 51 of the CCA itself, interpreting it very restrictively.12 This restrictive reading of the concept of exceptionality is later re-applied by the Court in its attempt to interpret the notion of manifest violations. The Court refers to the precedent case Up-62/96 dated April 11 1996, where the notion of manifest violation was defined as “such that it cannot be disproved or "undermined" even after comprehensiveexamination, since all circumstances, common sense and experience, without evidencing and with no possibility of counter-arguing, exclude any possibility of a different conclusion.” The Court then announces the application of the above defined judicial test to the concrete case of the asserted violations of human rights. It concludes that “the constitutional complaintcontains serious allegations of violations of the petitioner's human rights, which require careful, accurate and thorough analysis,” however this seriousness does not meet the required standard for manifest violation. The reasoning? A judgment based exclusively on circumstantial evidence is in itself not a manifest violation, because “the Constitutional Court has hitherto not yet establishedconstitutional standards, against which the justification of the alleged violation could be assessed.” 16 If however the Constitutional Court were to conclude that such a judgment complies with the law, this would “engender additional questions [which, as the Constitutional Court readily admits, the petitioner is explicitly asking anyway] as to in how far a particular judgment can be based on circumstantial evidence (only); what the description of a criminal act should entail in such cases; and how concretized those conclusions should be which the Court has deduced from proven facts, after eliminating all other possible logical conclusions.” The Constitutional Court claims that “all of this has to be subjected to a serious and thoroughconstitutional review in order for clear answers to be formed and in order for clear constitutional standards in respect of these human rights to be established.” However, the Supreme Court has to have the first say, as these questions pertain to both criminal and constitutional law.  The Constitutional Court draws similar conclusions with regard to other alleged violations: it either rejects them as not manifest or else restates that it has hitherto not yet passed a judgement on the relevant constitutional question and that this should be done by the Supreme Court. Since the standard for manifest violation of human rights therefore is not met, the Constitutional Court does not even proceed to assess the potentially irreparable consequences for the petitioner. Instead, it simply rejects the constitutional complaint. IV. Critical Analysis of the Decision of the Constitutional Court The decision presented above is unconvincing even on its own premises. As seen above, it is founded primarily on the principle of inter-institutional trust towards the Supreme Court; the latter has, at least to date, failed to justify this trust. Even though the Constitutional Court cautions that the allegations of human rights violations are serious and although it explicitly quotes the provision from Article 423 of the Criminal Procedure Act which gives the Supreme Court the legal power to withhold or suspend the execution of a criminal sanction (depending on the content of the request lodged for protection of legality) and thus to guarantee effectiveness of the extraordinary legal remedy, the Supreme Court has so far failed to do so. On the contrary, according to media reports, the Supreme Court has also washed its hands, referring the petitioner to the District Court for a decision on withholding criminal sanction, in the meantime the judge-rapporteur would be on holiday! 22 The rejection of the constitutional complaint and the consequent inaction of the Supreme Court left the petitioner de facto without an available effective legal remedy to defend his personal liberty and passive electoral right. This renders the supporting reason for rejecting the constitutional complaint void, while Slovenia evidently risks sanction by the European Court of Human Right under Article 6 of the ECHR. In light of the above, the efforts of the Constitutional Court to interpret the wording of Article 51 of the CCA as restrictively as possible are also completely unconvincing. The Constitutional Court performs an act of a genuinely conservative semantic acrobatics by linguistically enhancing the exceptionality of the procedure stipulated in Article 51 of the CCA. It achieves this by underlining that the Act uses the discretionary term “can, with emphasis on exceptionally.” Since a constitutional complaint is a subsidiary legal remedy, the powers from the above mentioned article can only be used “really exceptionally.” The Constitutional Court further insists on “how exceptional” a decision on a constitutional complaint under this article should be by listing its jurisprudence. It is not entirely clear what purpose these linguistic bravura serve, other than informing us in several places that exceptional is truly and so very exceptional, and by no means only exceptional. Their purpose is even less clear given the Constitutional Court anyway relies on its own standard for “manifest” human rights violation, whereas this standard is, as we shall see later, so restrictive in its substance that it is legally-logically untenable. The standard for manifest violation is derived from the above mentioned precedent Up-62/96 dated April 11 1996 which, although asserted differently, has only been selectively followed by the majority at the Constitutional Court. The decision indeed reiterates the standard for manifest violation; however, unlike the precedent case the majority this time does not actually apply the standard, with the exception of point 24. Unlike the decision Up-62/9626 the decision Up-373/14-22 does not contain a first-hand explanation as to why the alleged violations are not manifest. All we learn is that the “allegations of violations are serious” and “that they must be the subject to a serious constitutional review in order for clear constitutional standards to be established.”  Ultimately, however, the allegations are not reviewed, because “the Constitutional Court has not to date established such constitutional standards against which it would be possible to assess the merits of the alleged violation.” Take note: the fact that the Constitutional Court has not yet established jurisprudence in areas where difficult issues of criminal and constitutional law are raised has nothing of course to do with the question of whether the human rights violations are manifest or not. The two issues are completely independent. If the violation is manifest, the Court has to decide upon it; even more so if the constitutional standards supposedly do not yet exist. In particular if the petitioner is in prison. Under no circumstances should it be possible to deny that a violation is manifest because constitutional standards have not yet been established. And just because the Constitutional Court cannot or even does not know how to decide in the matter, should the ordinary courts indeed try first? As the Constitutional Court points out how unfavorable its position is due to the lack of clearly developed constitutional standards, I cannot but criticize isolationism. What about the comparative constitutional view? The Slovenian Constitutional Court is hardly the first in the world facing these questions. In many previous cases it managed to establish exemplary cooperation in judicial dialogue and in the practice of migration of constitutional standards in the era of so called new constitutionalism. Not this time though, although it would not need to search far. It would suffice to look into the separate opinion of Justice Peter Jambrek in the precedent Up-62/96, in which he compares Article 51 of the CCA with German regulation. The latter probably served as a model for the Slovenian one in the first place. Last but not least, even if the Constitutional Court of Slovenia had been the first in the world facing such a case, it would be expected - at least from the examples of the prominent highest courts abroad which wish to leave their imprint on the development of constitutional law - that the Court would seize such a case with both hands in order to establish the missing constitutional standards. Regardless of all the above, it is especially significant that the Constitutional Court majority overlooks that the standard for manifest violation from the decision Up-62/96 is obviously logically untenable. Not only is this clearly pointed out in the dissenting opinion of Justice Ernest Petrič, 31 it also derives from the dissenting opinion of Justice Boštjan M. Zupančič on the precedent decision to which the majority of the Constitutional Court clings so firmly, yet obviously selectively: “[…] the majority refused to decide upon the content of a first-rate constitutionalmatter on a formality, as if the law (the CCA) prevents them from doing so. They thus neglected the distinction between a prescriptive and an instrumental norm and harnessed the cart in front of the horse, which should be pulling the cart.” 32 In both cases the Constitutional Court majority interpreted the procedural requirement for manifest violation alike: in order to be allowed early admission to constitutional review the constitutional complaint must fulfil such a standard of violation that there wouldn't be much for the Constitutional Court to do at the actual constitutional review itself. If a manifest violation of human rights satisfies the procedural requirement for admission of the constitutional complaint solely when “it cannot be disproved or ‘undermined’ even after comprehensive examination, since all circumstances, common sense and experience, without evidencing and with no possibility of counter-arguing, exclude any possibility of a different conclusion”, then this procedural requirement automatically pre-determines the decision on substance. This is the very putting the cart in front of the horse, which is logically absurd and as such indicates a misinterpretation of Article 51 of the CCA. In addition, it is worth pointing out that the precedent Up-62/96 itself stands on very shaky constitutional foundations. Namely inherent to the case is an extremely questionable constitutional maneuver: after the three-member senate decided that the Court would hear the constitutional complaint, and after this decision was already made public, the Constitutional Court majority in plenum decided to reject the already admitted constitutional complaint. This happened even though the substantive decision-making of the Constitutional Court in full composition should only lead either to rejection or acceptance of the (substance of) the constitutional complaint. To sum up: the decision on rejection of the constitutional complaint faces a whole lot of troubles. The Constitutional Court rejects the constitutional complaint because it trusts in the Supreme Court and even instructs it to effectively protect the rights of the petitioner. This does not happen, however. The Constitutional Court justifies its decision with reference to precedent, a case controversial in itself. In doing so the Court takes on the standard for manifest violation and enhances it so far that practically no early constitutional complaint could fulfil it - as indeed in the last nine years, no constitutional complaint has. This is not surprising because such a standard is logically-legally untenable. On top of everything the Constitutional Court does not even actually apply this unfulfillable standard in its decision: there is no case by case reasoning as to why the alleged violations of human rights are not manifest. Also, the Constitutional Court, unlike in the precedent, despite or due to the unfulfilled condition for manifest violation, does not examine the requirement of the irreparable consequences which might justify a truly extraordinary exceptionality of this case. Such analysis can (only) be found in the dissenting opinions. V. Dissenting Opinions: Common Sense and Experience Dissenting opinions were written by Justices Jan Zobec, Mitja Deisinger and Ernest Petrič. They were united in the view that the Constitutional Court should admit the constitutional complaint, regardless of its insistence on the judicial test of the standard for manifest violation. Justice Zobec was the clearest in his claim that all three requirements are fulfilled: the manifestly violated human rights, irreparable consequences as well as the exceptionality of the case as an additional condition. The fulfilment of the second requirement is the simplest to ascertain since imprisonment always represents irreparable damage for the complainant.36 All three dissenting opinions also see the required standard for manifest violation met on a number of levels, most evidently from the aspect of the principle of legality as defined in the first paragraph of Article 28 of the Constitution, as well as from the consequently related right to effective defence as stipulated in Article 29 of the Constitution. The Prosecution, the District Court and the Higher Court were all aware of the fact, notorious from the beginning of proceedings and reiterated in the assertions of the complainant as well as in cautions from some quarters of the legal profession, that the complainant was first indicted and then sentenced for a criminal act that remains un-individualized, un-concretized and even abstract when it comes to how it was committed. This was confirmed fully by the three dissenting opinions. Justice Deisinger writes that a careful examination of the contested rulings shows that the court “took the prosecutor's place and transformed itself into a double(unconstitutional) role of court and prosecution.”As was most clearly pointed out by former constitutional Justice Franc Testen, this was a case of violation of the most fundamental, civilizational procedural principle: no plaintiff, no judge. This was further affirmed by another former constitutional Justice Matevž Krivic, when he publicly cautioned that Mr. Janša's sentence is based on proceeding with “a flaw so severe, although visible only to the most skilled lawyers' eyes, that it only has to make it to the Supreme Court - and the sentence will fall.” It is a case of a violation so grave that the indictment proposal should have been rejected and the proceedings on such basis should never have been started in the first place. It calls for replacing the sentence of the District Court with an acquittal. This violation is “clear, obvious and flagrant.” Furthermore, the alleged violation is also logically completely untenable. As Justice Zobec writes most insightfully, if the crucial element of a criminal act is neither recounted nor proven and it remains on an abstract level only, which is explicitly affirmed by the attempt of the Higher Court to help out the District Court which ruled verbatim that the crime: the acceptance of the promise of a reward was committed through ‘unidentified means of communication’,  “then the fundamental legal logical operation, the one that leads to sentencing and simultaneously means conclusion of the principle of legality in criminal law, becomes impossible. A subsumption of a concrete act under an abstract legal provision, a combination of both aspects of the principle of legality - that pertaining to the lawmaker (…) as well as that pertaining to the prosecution and consequently the judge (concretization and individualization of a criminal act).” Justice  Zobec  proceeds  by adding a  passage  which  undoubtedly constitutes  a  classic  of Slovenian constitutional law and theory, in particular of legal practice and reasoning: “It is evident to anybody that the subsumption of the abstract under the abstract is a logical nonsense for the same cannot be subsumed under the same, it can merely be equated (tautology); for a syllogism is not a tautology. And it is clear to anybody that it is impossible to defend oneself against an abstract allegation. From the aspect of constitutional process law (the safeguard from Article 28 of the Constitution) this means that a person can only be sentenced for a concretely committed act.” Justice Zobec concludes that this is something so self-evident that it also renders the condition for exceptionality fulfilled and thus allows the Constitutional Court to decide immediately, without waiting for the Supreme Court.44  This is of particular importance when the sentence of imprisonment is ruled in “flagrantly unfair trial” against the leader of the biggest opposition party, his imprisonment three weeks before elections fundamentally affecting the democratic process in the country as well as the legitimacy of the election outcome.  Justice Deisinger goes even a step further in his conclusion when he justifiably questions the very possibility of ensuring an impartial and hence a just trial for the complainant. This question has since been further validated with the recent address of the President of the Supreme Court at the annual event ‘Days of Judiciary’, where he shared the stage with the very same supreme public prosecutor who represented the indictment against the complainant. This took place after the constitutional complaint was lodged and before the request for protection of legality was filed. All of the above already moves us towards the wider context of the Patria case. However, before I focus on it, I should touch upon the reasons behind such a big discrepancy between the positions of the Constitutional Court’s minority and that of the majority. Since I am neither sociologist nor psychologist, I cannot provide a definite answer to this question. It seems to me though that the answer is hidden somewhere in the definition of the judicial test for manifest violation which the Constitutional Court chose to apply. There, among other things, it is stated that the perception of manifest violations of human rights depends also on “common sense and experience.” VI. Law in Context One of the most noticeable differences between the Constitutional Court majority and the minority in this case is the degree to which they recognize and highlight the wider context of the Patria case. As we have seen, the majority founds its decision on semantic assumptions of Article 51 of the CCA, on its past jurisprudence as well as on trust in the ordinary courts and division of labour between them. They do not deliberate on the consequences of their decision, at least not in the text itself. Nor do they define their point of view towards the consequences, although the petitioner refers to their irreparable nature. They fail to do so notwithstanding awareness of the fact that we are in the middle of an election campaign, three weeks before the election and that physical removal of the petitioner, the leader of the opposition, cannot remain without effect on the fair conduct of elections, and on the legitimacy of the outcome. For where else in Europe are opposition leaders imprisoned just before the election? It is evident that the majority at the Constitutional Court was not interested in these kinds of issues in this instance; just as, interestingly enough, another majority had not been interested in similar issues back in 1997 in the case that served as precedent in the case at hand. Back then, Justice Zupančic warned strongly in his separate opinion that the Constitutional Court avoided its jurisdiction and thus its responsibility in a case of capital importance out of legally-technical reasons, or more accurately because it assessed the “procedural requirements” too strictly. Instead of demonstrating the breadth of constitutional review, intended as the “main antidote to formalistic legal reasoning,” the Constitutional Court did just the opposite.Back then as well as today. The only difference is that the capital importance of today's case is redoubled from the aspect of constitutional law. The majority at the Constitutional Court today assumes both responsibility for the loss of personal freedom of an individual, as well as responsibility for the unfairness of elections and their potential illegitimacy. Of course, such a risk (of responsibility) is always present. However, it becomes most obvious when there are not only circumstantial but also direct evidence (in the form of almost consensus from those legal professionals who spoke out in the Patria case) that the trial, which has been suspect from the very start, was concluded as a flagrantly unfair one, and that it should never even have started in the first place. The chronology of the Patria case is rather long and complex, yet without it we cannot understand the controversy of the conduct of the Constitutional Court, the ordinary courts, the prosecution and those most pertinent experts in criminal law who should have been the first to raise their voices to stop the trial as it was developing with disrespect to legal standards. The Patria case was launched, and has developed ever since, as a sensational media story and an explosive political affair. It has always gained momentum before elections, then temporarily subsided only to be reignited time and time again. It has been an instrument of political struggle which, on the one hand, would not be that unusual even for a democracy of the western type. On the other hand, in such a democracy with a plural media space, the case would have come to a rightful conclusion much earlier. In Slovenia, the case is still dragging on even though it has been clear for a long time that the letter J from the Finnish TV documentary does not mean ‘Janša’, but some Croatian businessman ‘Jerković’. The case started to interest lawyers only once it acquired legal dimensions. This happened when the indictment was filed. It was filed by the wife of the former communist secret police agent who 25 years ago pursued and arrested the first-indicted in the Patria case. The content of the indictment was unprecedented for the wider public: it contained an unknown time, place and means. At least to me, it was clear from the very start that such an indictment should not and cannot become part of established practice (unless we are bringing about a Kafkaesque reality). I introduced this opinion at an event of the Academic Lawyers’ Association at the University of Ljubljana which was almost cancelled due to pressure from unnamed, but supposedly very respected Slovenian lawyers. The stakes were obviously high. This is further confirmed by the conduct of the parties of the trial. The prosecution took up work at full steam. According to the latest claims of the defence (which were contested by the prosecution) it went so far as handpicking mainly incriminating documents. Should these claims be confirmed, it would be a clear case of a breach of the principle of equality of arms. The indicted and his party on the other hand took a defensive stance, combined with periodical verbally sharp and symbolic attacks on the judiciary. The latter has defended itself in an auto-poetic and self-sufficient way and has tried to hide their faces from the public. Occasionally, however, this defensive pose was interrupted by some excesses. Since these were already comprehensively documented by Vlad Perju from Boston College, I do not intend to repeat them here. However, it is worth singling out the example of a Higher Court judge who publicly congratulated the District Court judge for the courageous sentencing (then not yet legally binding); and who likened the protest of the supporters of the sentenced in front of the court to the hysterical reactions of North Korean children at the visits of Kim Jong Un. It goes without saying that such behavior from a judge of the Higher Court does not contribute to the appearance of impartiality of the judiciary, one of the postulates of a fair trial. The appearance of impartiality was compromised even more directly with the thunderous performance of the President of the Supreme Court in front of a crowd of judges gathered at the annual event "Days of Judiciary". He used that occasion for tirades against both the defendant, who at the time had an open deadline for a request for extraordinary legal remedy at the Supreme Court, as well as against one of the constitutional judges. In addition, the very same supreme public prosecutor who achieved the final sentence in the Patria case and is also likely to be involved in the extraordinary legal remedy proceedings also took part at the event. Justice Deisinger is thus right to point out that all of the above casts strong doubt on whether the complainant's right to a fair trial can actually be guaranteed under these circumstances. This doubt is reaffirmed in the above mentioned independent opinion of Vlad Perju. It is also echoed in cautions coming from some Slovenian professional organizations. Such opinions did not find expression in the main Slovenian media outlets: the latter reported on the Patria case practically in terms of the presumption of guilt. Despite the fact that the process has been suspect and conducted in a legally unusual manner from its very beginning, and despite warnings from prominent legal experts including self-professed political opponents of the accused, a different narrative prevailed in the media. That this is a case of corruption where direct evidence is by the very nature of things impossible; and that the judiciary should be trusted and respected even when it delivers a sentence exclusively on the basis of circumstantial evidence and even when the sentence relates to a criminal act, committed in a way that does not even require description, since it has been sufficiently defined in the abstract legal provision of a Penal Code. 54 In a number of instances an impression (by the media at least) was created that all of the above, as unusual as it might appear, is permissible - in regard to this very convict at any rate. According to prevailing public opinion, perpetuated among others by influential opinion leaders and intellectuals, he should probably have been put behind bars long ago, at least for the alleged, but never proven, arms deals during the Slovenian independence war. To sum up, the legal and political dimensions of the Patria case have been intertwined all along. This was also achieved in part by the extreme restraint of the academic legal profession. In my opinion, the latter has traditionally proven to be sterile and practically silent, be it in cases of momentous decisions of the courts or else in other seismic legal developments in Slovenian society. The Patria case is an example of such a paradigmatic case which, according to the unwritten rule established by the profession, is not to be discussed. Due to the circumstances of the case, those of us who did talk about it are labelled as a priori political, supposedly “right-wing” lawyers, as “the black ones” and due to the person in the trial as “janšist”. The label is attached regardless of the substance of our analyses - truth be told, they were not all equally convincing. On the other hand the “left-wing” lawyers seem not to exist, nor are there any “left-wing” academics. The latter are publicly presented as neutral, although, as it transpires later on, the nature of their employment puts them in an open conflict of interests. All of these, along with the silent majority of the academic legal profession, are and remain neutral, non-political and therefore professional. Such labels are insincere and unfounded. It is perfectly clear that every personally mature individual, in particular a lawyer, does not only have his own worldview but also his political convictions. Every legal expert, in particular a university professor who educates future generations of students, should also have his own professional academic integrity, which obliges him to overcome his political views and to uphold what is right. Without this, if society lacks an intellectual nucleus, especially among lawyers, to coherently champion values and principles and what is right (as derived at least from the Constitution), if morality and ethics were made obsolete in the spirit of positivism, then truly anything is permissible and possible in such a society, especially if you are in the minority or in opposition. Thus it is also possible that nobody is particularly upset when three constitutional judges and some of their former colleagues describe the proceedings in the Patria case as flagrantly unfair. Nobody is particularly troubled when the majority at the Constitutional Court rejects a constitutional complaint out of trust that the Supreme Court will guarantee effective legal protection anyway. The latter, however, does practically nothing, quoting holidays (sic!) among other reasons. It publicly rebukes the convict, already imprisoned, that this is his own fault since he did not use another legal remedy (at the District Court) for withholding the imprisonment. This entire farce would not have taken place had the pertinent distinguished legal experts, especially university professors from the areas related to the Patria case, explained publicly at the very outset what Justice Zobec has written: “In our country (as well as elsewhere in the normal, civilized world) nobody should be sentenced for an abstract act. In our country, someone could only be sentenced for their actual actions. This is something so self-evident […]” Instead, the process, which according to the opinion of distinguished legal experts should not have been initiated to begin with, has taken a full four years, moving from one instance of jurisdiction to another, and it is still not finished. It is at least and indeed extremely unusual that even the Constitutional Court doesn't realise what irreparable consequences might affect the petitioner, an eminent politician (mostly in opposition), who goes from election to election encumbered by the weight of a “legally non-existing” process. As the former constitutional Justice Krivic wrote, it is not only the prerogative of Janša's voters but also the right of his opponents to know the truth about the legal untenability of this process. Otherwise, in particular in the context of the unbalanced media presentation, the process has a fatal impact on voting preferences, it distorts them and in fact distorts the legitimacy of the democratic process. This consequently deforms the parliamentary political process, founded on fair elections and the outcomes of such process. In the last instance, democracy itself is distorted. It is therefore in everybody's interest that the Patria case comes to a legally binding conclusion with a substantive decision. It is also in everybody's interest to dissolve any doubts as to whether the complainant has or has not committed the criminal act. It is in everybody's interest to eliminate any suspicion that the Patria case might be a politically motivated trial. Given all the circumstances of the case it is not unusual for a reasonable person to share the concern of our most prominent writer Drago Jančar, who writes apprehensively: “There is every indication that this is a case of political trial. Beyond circumstantial evidence, there is unambiguous direct evidence for this. It is hard to believe that this is possible in a democratic country.” I still try to believe that it is not possible and I share the view of Justice Deisinger that this suspicion will be refuted by the Slovenian judiciary itself: “The decision of the Court in regard to withholding or the suspension of theimprisonment will in itself demonstrate on an empirical level whether the position of the Constitutional Court on effective legal remedy with the request for the protection of legality is confirmed or refuted. The later the pronouncement of the breach of the Constitution or the European Convention on Human Rights – be it at a particular instance of the proceedings, constitutional review or through the European Court of Human Rights decision - the harder the consequences will be for the whole judiciary. What if the entire criminal proceedings against the complainant from the filing of the indictment onwards transpires to have been illegal, in contradiction with the Constitution and the European Convention on Human Rights, along with violating human rights? An impartial judiciary should keep this fallout in mind when it makes decision.” VII. Vestiges of the Past – Burdens for the Present An impartial and independent judiciary in a well-ordered, normal, constitutional democracy should also be aware that its quality depends first and foremost upon itself and its corrective mechanisms. The judiciary should not be subjected to just any criticism, especially if it is vacuously rude or inexact. But it can be a subject to well-argued criticism. Albeit supposedly the weakest branch, judiciary is a form of power too. However, historic cases, when human rights were grossly violated on Slovenian soil with the support of or even through the judiciary, are not rare. This part of our recent history remains unresolved and it is still painful and traumatic to many. Representatives of the judiciary should thus avoid rehashing and reviving it with, at the minimum, irresponsible if not un-constitutional behavior, such as dressing up as Tito’s pioneers and dancing with the flag of the former Yugoslavia.The same also applies to presumed personal or at least ideological continuity with the former regime - something that a significant proportion of the public is strongly convinced about - and not unjustifiably. The most honorable and virtuous solution to this challenge was proposed by Silvij Šikovec, the judge who in the former regime convicted two priests for blessing a memorial to “national traitors.” This is what he said when parts of the public criticized the appointment of the Head of the Slovenian Prosecution Zvonko Fišer, who brought the indictment in that case: “Even at this time, after 31 years, I do not want to comment on my decision at all. It was made in a particular time and place and founded on different legislation. It speaks, however, as any other decision, also about me, the judge who was deciding in this case. We cannot change the past, but we can learn from it. In this sense I find lacking, even in times after the democratic change, a serious and thorough discussion about human rights violations. The discussion should take place within the judiciary in particular, with no political divisions.” According to media reports, he also concluded: “On a symbolic level, especially from the perspective of those affected, the feeling that nothing has really changed is growing stronger. Twenty years after the change of the system, I personally don't see the need for those of us who held high judicial offices in the former system to run for such offices now. Especially if this triggers reactions which could raise doubts about the functioning of the rule of law and protection of human rights.” Were this actually to be the case, the throwing around of terms such as “Murgle trials” in the public space could be stopped as well as suspicions about the (im)partiality of the judiciary that re-appear time and time again from this or the other side. It would enable us to publicly acknowledge that what was evidently an inadequate break with the past, along with extremely high retention rates of elites, led to the current situation in which our judiciary, as well as practically the entire state and in fact civil-society apparatus, are filled with people who are directly or indirectly in different ways, most often even through family relations, connected with the personnel of the old political set.  This should be publicly acknowledged as a challenge which needs an adequate, organic and constitutional solution. The Slovenian judiciary would thus improve its reputation on the symbolic level itself, something that would probably be reaffirmed through judicial statistics – an area that causes concern due to figures both from home courts and the courts abroad. Until this actually happens, the state of the Slovenian judiciary is probably very close to the depiction from the Op-ed “Mehki trebuh” by Justice Zobec. 67As the old saying goes: don’t kill the messenger. He or she cannot be guilty for bringing the news about a given situation and going at him will change nothing. What is needed instead is a well-argued, self-reflective, and above all self-critical discussion about the assertions from this article. Such discussion could be very sharp, but it has to be conducted in good faith in order to allow the forming of such a legal order, both in theory and in practice, as required by the Slovenian Constitution. The onus is on all of us: in particular the lawyers holding key offices at institutions of state and those at our universities. It is our duty to assure that legal proceedings are not exploited or even misused for political objectives, such as the elimination of a political opponent which increasingly appears to be the case in the Patria case. It is also our duty to guarantee effective and lawful prosecution of crimes, especially in the economy and politics, holding everybody who has been legally proven guilty accountable for their actions. It is imperative to relieve Slovenia of the burden of a hijacked state. This is the context within which the Patria case took place. It includes the Constitutional Court, which (due to the above mentioned reasons and thanks to six of its members) failed to complete its task as required by the best understanding of the constitutional law in the Slovenian context. The onus, on the basis of explicit trust of the Constitutional Court, is now upon the Supreme Court. If the latter fails to complete the task, Slovenia will be in serious peril of reaching such levels of unfairness and legal untenability in regard to the personal freedom of the imprisoned individual, as well as in regard to fair and legitimate elections, that in a metaphorical sense the Slovenian Rubicon of the Radbruch formula could even be transgressed. Given the already too-high levels of unfairness and legal untenability, Slovenia is beginning to be talked and reported about as the only EU Member State with a political prisoner, we should not allow ourselves any further slipping downwards.

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25.04.2017

ddr. Klemen Jaklič: On Truth And Justice

On Truth and Justice: the Trial of Janez Janša In the Slovenian Patria trial the case specifically against Janez Janša has, legally speaking, never existed. I claim that the one who explains or even decides that it has does not make one’s ruling on the basis of law. One either does not understand the very essence of the constitutional requirement that everyone is to be treated in accordance with »due process of law«. Or, is driven by motives that are external to the law and aim at one, and one goal alone: conviction, because this particular person must be convicted. Personally and professionally, legal scholars must feel the strongest moral obligation to object and fight against this kind of travesty, as opposed to administration, of justice. This must be so anywhere and regardless of who the victim might be. Names must not matter to us. Legally speaking, the case against Janez Janša is imaginary not only because, as several leading Slovenian legal scholars have already publicly explained, the unidentified facts do not match the elements of the criminal act as defined by Article 269 of the Slovenian Criminal Code. It is a forced fabrication also due to so many identified acts that represent a direct breach of the basic constitutional requirement that everyone is to be treated non-arbitrarily, according to due process of law. The following are just four (out of many) examples in illustration.   Firstly, in addition to international jurisprudence there is also an unequivocal judgment by the Slovenian Supreme Court, nr. 153/2012, from May 1, 2012, elaborating in a similar case one of the basic legal standards for prosecution and trial based on due process of law as opposed to mere arbitrary persecution. The Supreme Court stated the following: »The charges are general and without a touch with specific individual acts. As such they do not allow for the defendant to defend himself. No special justification and analysis are needed to conclude that, clearly, a defendant can only defend himself against charges that he committed a specifically described criminal act, and not that he committed the act at an unidentified time, against unidentified persons, in an unidentified manner, and the like…Each of the charges against a specific act needs to be based on a matrix of data determining the individual act as defined by the identified necessary components«. Whoever ignores a precedent of this clarity (the prosecution explicitly used phrases like “at an unidentified time” at an “unidentified location”, through an “unidentified method of communication”, etc) and does not even respond to its ruling – neither at the prosecution nor the trial stage – acts in direct contradiction with the constitutional requirement of fair treatment according to due process of law. Among others, those are the requirements of Article 2 of the Slovenian Constitution and of Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights.   Secondly, the prosecutor who filed the charge to the court knew that she was in direct conflict of interest guarded against by the Constitution. Legally, it is a serious issue that the prosecutor’s husband and the accused have been, as it is publicly known, in significant and continuous conflict ever since that person was involved in the arrest and interrogation of the dissident Janez Janša during the events that led to Slovenia’s independence some twenty years ago. Clearly, either the particular prosecutor should have withdrawn herself from such a case, or the prosecutors’ office should have done that. That should have been done especially since the replacement was easily possible, which means that the impartiality of treatment could have been easily secured. There are explicit common European standards against such conflict of interest elaborated by the Council of Europe in this area (and those are necessarily part of the Slovenian Constitution as well) that the prosecution has thereby directly violated. Whoever simply ignores such a requirement does not however only violate the common European standards and thus the Slovenian Constitution, but also makes it clear that – willingly or not – he/she is acting arbitrarily, according to measures and motives outside of law.   Thirdly, the prosecution filed their charge through the so-called indictment proposal, not through the regular indictment. Unlike the second, the first is a simplified version of a charge that is not checked for sufficient justification by an independent judge and instead leads directly to a trial. To the extent that this legislation also permits persecution of political leaders without any chance of a preliminary judicial check (when such a check would easily be possible without any harm to the effectiveness of a justified prosecution), it is almost surely unconstitutional. Among others, it violates the constitutional rights of every citizen to free and fair elections. When it is possible to involve a leading politician into a trial based on wholly unchecked indictment proposals, this presents a grave danger of severely distorting a political process. Such an interference can in effect even abolish the whole institute of free, fair, and equal elections. Ye this goes against a clear line of constitutional case-law requiring from the legislature to use milder means (i.e. milder for the constitutional rights involved) whenever those milder means achieve the desired ends (administration of justice through justified prosecution) just as effectively, or almost as effectively, as the means that are more restrictive of the constitutional rights. This is the so-called principle of proportionality as applied by constitutional scrutiny that is especially strict when the rights to free, fair, and equal elections are at stake. In the case at hand it is obvious that such a milder, but equally effective means, clearly does exist: any criminal charge against a political leader (e.g. Prime Minister or Opposition Leader) could be prosecuted through the regular indictment that does include a preliminary judicial check as to its justifiability. The trial judge was aware of these serious doubts. They were publicly expressed by the country’s several leading constitutional scholars (including two former Chief Justices of the Constitutional Court). She nonetheless chose to ignore and never address those concerns. However, according to the explicit provision of the Slovenian Constitution (Article 156), any trial judge who encounters a law that is likely unconstitutional has an express duty to temporarily discontinue the trial and send the issue to the Constitutional Court. The trial judge can continue with the trial only after, and in accordance with, the Constitutional Court’s ruling on the issue. Whoever chooses to ignore such an explicit provision of the Constitution chooses to act in direct contradiction to the law. Willingly or not, one gives the impression that one is led by something outside of law, something that is arbitrary.   Fourthly, an equally fatal stain on the legality of the case is also the issue concerning the inadmissibility of »evidence« acquired abroad in a way that directly violates the requirements of the Slovenian Constitution because representing violations of human rights. Is it necessary for the legality of the process that such »evidence« be excluded as inadmissible? Whoever chooses to ignore such a preeminent constitutional dilemma (the clash of two or three distinct constitutions) in such a delicate case (trial against an opposition leader), and does not temporarily adjourn the trial for sending the issue to the Constitutional Court (the explicit requirement of Article 156 of the Constitution), truly does appear to act according to something outside of law. The case against Janez Janša is legally destroyed. It has an irremovable stain of arbitrariness. Whatever comes out of such a process is not law. The main victims of such an approach to – disregard of – law are primarily we the citizens who will come closer neither to justice nor truth, whatever those might be in this case. Legal institutions are supposed to exist in order to act according to law, and law alone. This is the only way in which they could be delivering us justice and truth. Those will not follow from the process as ruined as this one. The prosecution and trial against Janez Janša are a legal scandal of the highest rank.   Klemen Jaklic, LL.B. (Ljubljana), LL.M. (Harvard), D.Phil. (Oxford), S.J.D. (Harvard)   Published in Delo, Ljubljana, June 2013.   Klemen Jaklic has been teaching at Harvard University in the field of human rights, European integration, constitutional theory, and ethics, in various roles (Teaching Fellow, Head Teaching Fellow, and Lecturer on Law) since 2008. In the spring semester 2013 he is also a Visiting Lecturer at the Faculty of Law, University of Ljubljana. He is the author of “European Constitutional Pluralism: A Novel and Superior Branch of Constitutional Thought?” (Oxford University Press, forthcoming 2013)

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25.04.2017

Prvi shod Odbora 2014 pred sodiščem bo 12. oktobra!

Dragi vztrajnice in vztrajniki! Prvi shod Odbora 2014 po počitnicah pred Vrhovnim sodiščem bo 12. oktobra 2017! Že sedaj lepo vabljeni! Jesen je tukaj in novo vztrajniško leto se je začelo. Čaka nas ogromno dela, saj se krivice, oškodovanja ter zlorabe sodne in politične moči vrstijo. Kot veste smo bili dogovorjeni, da bomo imeli 14. 9. prvi shod v novem vztrajniškem letu. Verjamem, da se prvega shoda vsi veselimo! A letošnji september je neverjetno poln aktivnosti in dogodkov, ki so že vnaprej določeni in so povezani predvsem s predsedniškimi volitvami in referendumom o enem tiru. Organizacijsko vodstvo Odbora 2014 in jaz osebno smo v te aktivnosti polno vpeti, zato prosim, da z razumevanjem sprejmete odločitev, da je prvi shod Odbora 2014  pred Vrhovnim sodiščem v novem vztrajniškem letu prestavljen na četrtek 12. oktobra 2017, ob 17.00. Vem, da je to za veliko večino med nami žalostna informacija, če ne kar šok. Tudi sam sem jo težko sprejel, a enostavno je načrtovanih aktivnosti preveč, da bi lahko shod pripravili tako kot smo navajeni. Se vidimo 12. oktobra ob 17.00 pred Vrhodnim sodiščem! Kot vedno: mirno, kulturno in dostojanstveno, a odločno in nepopustljivo v zavzemanju za resnico in pravico.

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13.09.2017

Pravosodni trk v ledeno goro

23. 11. 2014 | Bogomir Štefanič ml. | Slovenski čas Dr. Damir Črnčec, predsednik Odbora 2014 Obramboslovec in politolog dr. Damir Črnčec je v javnosti znan kot profesor na Fakulteti za državne in evropske študije, sodelavec izobraževalnega programa Slovenske vojske, dvakrat (2005 in 2010) je bil direktor Obveščevalno-varnostne službe Ministrstva za obrambo, v letih 2012 in 2013 direktor Slovenske obveščevalno-varnostne agencije, je predsednik društva Evropska Slovenija, pisec številnih strokovnih in publicističnih prispevkov, zlasti s področja mednarodne in nacionalne varnosti. Slovenski čas ga je k pogovoru povabil v drugi vlogi: kot predsednika Odbora za varstvo človekovih pravic in temeljnih svoboščin – Odbora 2014, ki si, spodbujen z zadevo Patria, prizadeva za korenite spremembe slovenskega pravosodja.Pogovarjava se ob 25. obletnici padca berlinskega zidu. Takrat ste bili stari šele šestnajst let ...Tako čas padca berlinskega zidu kot potem ves proces pred osamosvojitvijo leta 1991 sem res spremljal še precej mlad, a sem se dobro zavedal, da so to prelomni dogodki. Seveda pa me je najbolj zaznamovala slovenska osamosvojitev.Ali ste pričakovali, da boste 25 let po začetku procesa demokratizacije protestirali, ker ste prepričani, da ima samostojna slovenska država ta čas spet na vesti politične zapornike – obsojence v zadevi Patria?Vsekakor tega ne bi mogel pričakovati, pa saj takrat o tem, ker sem bil le premlad, nisem niti razmišljal. Vaše vprašanje pa natančno zadene občutke starejših kolegov, ki so z nami v odboru za varstvo človekovih pravic in temeljnih svobodiščin, Odboru 2014, in so bili ob koncu 80. let v prvih vrstah v prizadevanju za demokratizacijo, spremembo političnega sistema, kot so Alenka Puhar, mag. Drago Demšar, David Tasič … V pogovorih so večkrat dejali, da si, ko smo dobili svojo državo, ki naj bi temeljila na spoštovanju človekovih pravic, nikakor niso predstavljali, da bo potrebno 25 let pozneje ponavljati “vajo iz demokratizacije”.Zakaj je bilo potrebno za Janšo, Krkoviča in Črnkoviča povzdigniti protestniški glas? V pravni državi, kar naj bi Slovenija bila, obstajajo pravne poti, po katerih naj bi imel vsakdo možnost prej ali slej dokazati nedolžnost.Za Slovenijo je napisano, da je socialna država, da je pravna država … Besede na ustavnem papirju dajejo slutiti, da so naši protesti res nekaj nepotrebnega. Ko pa od blizu pogledamo zadevo Patria, kaj vse se je dogajalo s tem procesom na različnih sodnih stopnjah, pridemo do drugačne ugotovitve. Javnost dobro pozna številne kritike, ki so jih o tej sodbi izrekli ugledni pravniki, tudi trije ustavni sodniki v ločenih mnenjih k sicer zavrnjeni prvi zahtevi za varstvo zakonitosti. V tem procesu ni dokazov, kaj, kje, kako, za kakšen denar naj bi se nekaj storilo. Nič oprijemljivega, vsa kozlovska sodba temelji na indicih, na frazi “naj bi”, torej na neki kafkansko-orwelovski novelistični zgodbi …Če pa k temu dodamo, kdo so akterji te zgodbe, se pojavijo dodatni pomisleki. Na čelu vrhovnega sodišča imamo človeka, ki je v prejšnjem režimu dokazano kršil človekove pravice, v našem odboru pa smo na podlagi odločitev ustavnega sodišča dokazali, da je sodeloval v senatih, ki so kršili človekove pravice tudi v demokraciji. Na vrhu tožilstva imamo človeka, ki je preganjal duhovnike, ki so v 70. letih blagoslovili križ in molili ob prikritem grobišču – in to je človek, ki je v demokraciji predstojnik najvišje tožilske instance, ki je vodila postopek zoper Janeza Janšo in soobtožene. Tudi zaradi takih stvari se ne moremo znebiti vtisa, da je to politično montirani proces, v marsičem podoben tistim, ki jih je uprizarjala nekdanja komunistična oblast, ki so ji bili prej omenjeni akterji zelo blizu oziroma so bili celo njen del.Slovenska posebnost?Da. Letos septembra smo v društvu Evropska Slovenija organizirali mednarodno konferenco o pravni državi in izzivih, s katerimi se soočajo demokracije, ki so zamenjale politične sisteme. Kolegica, profesorica prava s prestižne berlinske univerze, je povedala, da so v vzhodnem delu Nemčije po letu 1990 umaknili ne le vse kazenske sodnike, temveč so s fakultet odstranili tudi nekdanje profesorje, ker je prevladala ocena, da niso ne eni ne drugi sposobni procesirati prava demokratične države in družbe. Ko so se odstranjeni pritožili, je tudi nemško ustavno sodišče potrdilo, da niso kompetentni, da sodijo v demokraciji. Podoben primer se je nedavno znašel pred Evropskim sodiščem za človekove pravice (ESČP). To je jasno zastopalo stališče, da nekdo, ki je deloval v nekdanji totalitarni varnostni službi, v konkretnem primeru gre za romunsko Securitate, ne more zasesti javne funkcije v demokraciji. Če neki zakon to prepoveduje, je ustrezen in ni v nasprotju z evropsko konvencijo o človekovih pravicah.Že slišim ugovor slovenskih sodnikov, češ, saj je edino lustracijsko določilo doletelo prav nas, in sicer v zakonu o sodniški službi, ki ni dovoljeval, da bi bili v trajni mandat izvoljeni sodniki, ki so v prejšnjem režimu pri sojenju kršili človekove pravice.A kot dobro veste, se ta zakon v praksi sploh ni izvajal. Ali bi bil ob dosledni uporabi tega določila sedanji predsednik vrhovnega sodišča sploh lahko sodnik?! Tako pa je vso bedo vrha vrhovnega sodišča naplavil prav postopek izločitve Branka Masleše iz zahteve za varstvo zakonitosti v zadevi Patria. Občna seja vrhovnega sodišča je bila prvič nesklepčna, ker so bili sodniki poleti na dopustu, ko so se po dopustu spočiti vrnili, pa so večinsko ocenili, da je Masleša lahko predstojnik senata, ki je odločal o pritožbi Janeza Janše – torej o pritožbi nekoga, ki je javno in argumentirano nasprotoval temu, da bi Masleša sploh zasedel ta položaj. Imamo cel kup dokazov, da je njegovo sojenje vprašljivo. Z vidika prakse ESČP je njegovo imenovanje v senat popolnoma v nasprotju z načelom poštenega sojenja in nepristranskosti sodišča. Pri tem me je najbolj presenetilo to, da so skoraj vsi vrhovni sodniki – če se ne motim, so bili proti le štirje – podprli, da se Masleše ne izloči iz odločanja v zadevi Patria. Ko bo sodba zoper Janšo padla na ustavnem sodišču ali ESČP, se bo jasno pokazalo, da velika večina vrhovnih sodnikov ne razume, kaj pomeni vladavina prava, kaj pomeni pošteno in nepristransko sojenje.Ali so prizadevanja Odbora 2014 osredinjena le na obsojence v zadevi Patria? Tudi sedanji pravosodni minister vam očita, da radikalizirate razpravo o stanju v pravosodju le zaradi enega “politika v zaporu”.V odboru smo predstavili številne statistične podatke, ki kažejo na splošno stanje v pravosodju. Ti podatki so res grozljivi in nimajo pred seboj le enega človeka. Prof. Lovro Šturm je v svoji študiji ugotovil, da so slovenska sodišča v zadnjih 15 letih v različnih sestavah in senatih najmanj 613-krat kršila človekove pravice, kar izhaja iz odločitev slovenskega ustavnega sodišča. Verjemite, da je bilo kršitev še precej več, a zaradi različnih razlogov vseh podatkov še nimamo. Drugi podatek: slovenska sodišča so v skoraj 300 primerih izgubila proces pred ESČP zaradi kršitev človekovih pravic. Slovenija je po tej statistiki glede na število prebivalcev na neslavnem tretjem mestu med vsemi državami Sveta Evrope – slabši sta le Turčija in Rusija. Naslednji zgovorni podatek: študija Svetovnega ekonomskega foruma je ugotovila, da je Slovenija na 91. mestu po zagotavljanju pravne države, študija Svetovne banke pa, da so slovenska sodišča in celotno pravosodje na 122. mestu glede učinkovitosti reševanja sodnih sporov. Tudi varuhinja človekovih pravic ugotavlja, da so pritožbe zoper delovanje pravosodnih organov, ki pridejo pred njen urad, v 7,4-odstotnem deležu upravičene.Nabor teh podatkov jasno kaže, da pri kritičnem presojanju pravosodja ne gre le za primer Janeza Janše in drugih obsojenih v zadevi Patria, temveč da je slovenska tretja veja oblasti tudi v demokraciji velik kršitelj človekovih pravic. Ne nazadnje: samo četrtina prebivalcev Slovenije zaupa takšnemu pravosodju. Zaradi vseh nas je skrajni čas, da se teh problemov lotimo resno in temeljito. Primer Patria je le vrh ledene gore in je bil sprožilec, ki je pripeljal do tega, da smo sistematično odprli to rakavo rano slovenske družbe.Statistika, ki ste jo predstavili, je nekakšna “diagnoza” te rane, “terapijo” pa prinaša peticija za pravično družbo in državo vladavine prava, ki ste jo javnosti ponudili v presojo in podpis v začetku novembra. Kaj so temeljne zahteve te peticije?Celotno peticijo je mogoče prebrati in jo tudi podpisati na naši spletni strani www.odbor2014.si. Naj peticijo v njenih predlogih, kako naprej, na kratko povzamem. Prva in ključna zahteva je preglednost in popolna javnost sojenja in sodnih odločitev. Zahtevamo javni prenos sojenj razen v izjemnih primerih, kot so sojenja, v katerih sodelujejo mladoletne osebe. Želimo izvedeti imena sodnikov, ki so kršili človekove pravice. Za 613 primerov kršenja človekovih pravic, ki sem jih že omenil, smo po zakonu o dostopu do informacij javnega značaja že zahtevali podatke, kdo so bili sodniki, ki so sodelovali v teh senatih, sedaj pa še zahtevamo, da se razkrije, kako so glasovali posamezni člani senatov. Žalostno je, da lahko izvemo, kako so glasovali sodniki ustavnega sodišča (ti lahko napišejo tudi ločena mnenja), ne moremo pa izvedeti, kako so glasovali v senatih vrhovnega sodišča, višjega sodišča … Prav nobenega razloga ni, da tega ne bi smeli videti in vedeti. Vpogled v to bi nam omogočil, da jasno povemo, kateri sodnik je odgovoren za kršitve. Zato tudi zahtevamo, da ocena sodniške službe postane javna. Tu se srečujemo z anomalijo sodnega sveta, v katerem je premalo zastopana javnost. Sodni svet odloča o morebitni prekinitvi trajnega mandata sodnikov, čeprav jih imenuje državni zbor. Po našem mnenju to ni prav: tisti, ki te imenuje, naj te tudi razrešuje, pri tem pa naj bo postopek javen in pregleden, zakaj in kako je prišlo do imenovanja ter zakaj in kako je prišlo do razrešitve. Videti želimo celoten življenjepis sodnikov in njihove letne ocene, ki se pišejo znotraj sodstva, a ostajajo javnosti zaprte. Le zakaj, če pa so sodniki funkcionarji, kot so poslanci in ministri. O poslancih in ministrih vemo skorajda vse, o sodnikih pa je na primer greh vedeti, kakšno je njegovo premoženje …Ali terjate tudi odgovornost za napačne sodniške odločitve?Zahtevamo jasen sistem odgovornosti, ki bo omogočal presojo, ali je šlo v nekem primeru le za posameznem strokovno napako ali pa se pri določenem sodniku srečujemo z vzorcem ravnanj, ko je teh napak precej več, kot bi bilo še dopustno na podlagi normalne statistike. Ne govorimo le o sodnikih, temveč vsaj še o tožilcih.Ali prav razumem: Pravosodju, ki vztraja v slonokoščenem stolpu nedotakljivosti, želite dati obraz?Res je. Državljani imamo pravico videti ta obraz, vedeti, kaj kdo v pravosodju počne, slišati, kako to počne. Saj ne zahtevamo nič posebnega. Javnost delovanja sodne veje oblasti je trend in praksa tudi drugod na Zahodu.Težave, na katere opozarjate, seveda niso od včeraj. Ali se kdaj spomnite nemškega sodnika Normana Doukoffa, ki je leta 2003 v času slovenskega pridruževanja Evropski zvezi postavil podobno diagnozo: da je sodni sistem v Sloveniji neučinkovit, čeprav imamo sorazmerno zelo veliko sodnikov, ki pa se pri nas bolj ukvarjajo s ščitenjem lastnih privilegijev in plač kot s čim drugim ... Ko je javno predstavil to kritiko, je “padlo” po njem – podobno kot po Odboru 2014.Seveda se spomnim teh ugotovitev. Nesrečni zgodbi o slovenskem pravosodju lahko dodamo tudi finančni vidik, na katerega opozarjate: imamo največ sodnikov glede na številko prebivalstva v Evropski zvezi, to pomeni, da imamo najdražji sodni sistem (dvakrat dražji, kot je povprečje v povezavi), ki je pa hkrati najmanj učinkovit. Gospodarski sodni spori v povprečju trajajo skorajda štiri leta in so dokazano škodljivi za slovensko gospodarstvo.Ob kritičnih ugotovitvah tujih raziskav, ki se vrstijo že več kot desetletje, se nisem mogel ubraniti smehu, ko sem v enem izmed številnih mainstream medijev, ki skušajo zagovarjati oblastna stališča, prebral, kako so dobili neko novo raziskavo, po kateri naj bi se ugled našega pravosodja bistveno dvignil. Takšne stvari bomo v trobilih tipa Delo ali Dnevnik v prihodnje zelo verjetno brali vedno pogosteje. Bralcem svetujem, naj se na to propagando ne ozirajo; verodostojno ogledalo nam postavlja tujina. Odločitve ESČP, ocene Svetovne banke in Svetovnega ekonomskega foruma so neizprosni pokazatelji, kje smo in kam gremo.Še to: od takrat, ko je nemški strokovnjak Norman Doukoff predstavil kritični pogled na slovensko pravosodje, so šle stvari le še na slabše. Pa saj se tudi sodniki sami – vsaj tisti, ki premorejo kanček samokritičnosti, vem, da je takih kar nekaj – tega dobro zavedajo. Poslanec državnega zbora je na spletnih portalih objavil zapis neke sodnice, ki je sama ocenila, da imajo sodniki premalo dela, da imajo premajhen pripad zadev. Enako velja za tožilstvo. To povedo tudi meni. Hkrati pa poslušamo, da je v pravosodju zaposlenih premalo ljudi.Nastavljanje kritičnega ogledala slovenskemu pravosodju je naporno opravilo, ampak pri tem bomo vztrajali, kot smo doslej – že 140 dni (pogovor je bil posnet 6. novembra; op. B. Š.), odkar imamo edinega političnega zapornika v Evropski uniji.Ali je to protestniško vztrajanje že rušenje neodvisne tretje veje oblasti, kot vam očitajo?To so tragikomični očitki pravosodne oblastniške vrhuške. Najprej so nam govorili, da sploh ne smemo demonstrirati, potem so nam povedali, da ne smemo kritizirati njihovih sodb. Pa saj prav to počne denimo predsednik ZDA v svojih nagovorih kongresu. ESČP je v svojih sodbah jasno povedalo, da so gospe in gospodje sodniki tretja veja oblasti, da so torej funkcionarji, plačani iz državnega proračuna, in da zato lahko javnost kadar koli kritizira njih in njihovo delo – skorajda tako, kot kritizira politike: parlamentarce in ministre. Kaj smo dosegli v 140 dneh? Da danes nihče, kdor je vsaj malo demokrata, več resno ne postavlja vprašanja, ali sploh smemo protestirati pred vrhovnim sodiščem in javno kritizirati sodbe. Nekaj se je torej že premaknilo ...Pogovarjava se neposredno po tem, ko je vrhovno sodišče – sicer spet s pregovorno zamudo – objavilo razsodbo v zahtevi za varstvo zakonitosti v zadevi Patria. Neuradni podatek o zavrnjeni zahtevi je zdaj tudi uraden. Ali ta odločitev kakor koli spreminja prizadevanja Odbora 2014?Ne. Peticija, o kateri sva se prej pogovarjala, je spodbuda, imperativ za nadaljnje delo. V Odboru 2014 bomo na tej podlagi pripravili predlog normativnih sprememb. Peticija je torej širši strateški okvir, ki se bo konkretiziral s spremembami zakonodaje, ki bo omogočila vse to, kar predlagamo. Kar zadevo sámo odločitev vrhovnega sodišča v zadevi Patria, pa: moje mnenje je bilo vsekozi, da je pod vodstvom Branka Masleše žal nemogoče pričakovati pošteno, nepristransko odločitev. Upam, da bo zdaj ustavno sodišče zmoglo sprejeti odločitev na podlagi tega, kar je večina ustavnih sodnikov že zapisala, ko so zavrgli prvo pritožbo – namreč da so v sodbi znaki hujših kršitev človekovih pravic, ki so jih določneje opredelili trije ustavni sodniki v ločenih mnenjih. Če prej ne, se bo to izkazalo na ESČP. Od tam je danes prišla nova klofuta: pet sodb, v katerih je Sloveniji očitano kršenje pravic zapornikov.Te dni ste se odločili za internacionalizacijo svojih prizadevanj. Z demonstracijami v Ženevi je Odbor 2014 pospremil nastop ministra za pravosodje Gorana Klemenčiča, ki je na zasedanju medvladne delovne skupine Sveta Združenih narodov za človekove pravice v Ženevi predstavljal stanje človekovih pravic v naši državi. Kaj si obetate od takšnih akcij v tujini?Ozaveščanje mednarodne javnosti teče že od začetka naših dejavnosti, v zadnjem času smo jo le intenzivirali. A kaj dosti niti ni treba opozarjati, kajti ključni odločevalci v demokratični Evropi vedo, kaj se pri nas dogaja, seznanjeni so tudi s statistiko, o kateri sva prej govorila. In ko temu dodamo še slab gospodarski položaj, je vsem jasno, da država, ki je bila včasih zgled uspešne tranzicijske države in je s pohvalami leta 2008 predsedovala Svetu Evropske unije, ni več to, kar je bila. Postali smo bolnik Evrope. Iz evropske Slovenije vse bolj postajamo balkanska Slovenija. Pri čemer balkanizacijo v duhu Slovarja slovenskega knjižnega jezika razumem kot neurejenost – pravno in še kakšno.Morda še en primer, kako nas vidijo iz tujine. Dekan finske pravne fakultete, ki je bil na konferenci, ki sva jo že omenila, je bil v prispevku na nacionalni televiziji zmanipuliran glede tega, kar je dejansko govoril na posvetu. Ko je naslednji dan ugotovil, kaj se je zgodilo, je tvitnil nekako tako: Da razumeš Slovenijo, torej postkomunistično državo in njeno pravo, moraš razumeti tudi to, da v komunizmu ni bilo prava. Prišel je z eno percepcijo naše države, odšel pa z drugačno, resnično – slabo. Ni bil edini, ki je to doživel.Pravosodni minister, tako se zdi, ni bil najbolj srečen, ker ste ga v Ženevi pospremili z demonstracijami. Hkrati pa je ob dnevu pravosodja, ki s(m)o ga praznovali 4. novembra, na nacionalni televiziji trdil, da se niste pripravljeni srečati z njim v osebnem pogovoru, čeprav naj bi vam menda odprl vrata svoje pisarne.Zelo smo zadovoljni, da se je pravosodni minister končno uspel odzvati na naše pobude, čeprav se je odzval pričakovano – oblastniško arogantno in z zavajanjem. Vabila za srečanje nam doslej še ni dal. Govoril je v slogu, češ če bomo v odboru izrazili interes za pogovor, nas bo sprejel. V odboru smo ministra javno pozvali k podpisu peticije, ki smo jo pripravili. Upamo, da bo minister, v dobro nas vseh, zmogel pripraviti predlog ukrepov, kot jih predvideva peticija.Ali v sedanji oblasti sploh vidite pripravljenost za uresničitev sprememb, ki jih predlagate?Iskreno povedano: ne. Po vsej verjetnosti bi bilo mogoče potencial za take spremembe zbrati le okoli nečesa, kar bi lahko imenovali Demos 2.0 – v novi opoziciji, ki bi črpala iz demokratizacijskih korenin poznih 80. in začetka 90. let prejšnjega stoletja in bi kot prvi Demos povezovala široko demokratično pahljačo. V tistem času je to bilo šest strank in enajst posameznikov, ki se je podpisalo pod ustanovitev Demosa.A ob tem ne smemo pozabiti nečesa, na kar je hote ali nehote opozoril dolgoletni ideolog Socialnih demokratov dr. Igor Lukšič, ko je v nedavnem intervjuju govoril o temeljnem merilu, po katerem kontinuitetni vplivneži ravnajo v slovenskem političnem prostoru: ni namreč važno, iz katere stranke je kdo, ki leze na površje, “samo da ni iz stranke Janeza Janše”, dokler pa Janša ni bil glavni igralec, pa je bilo pomembno, “da ni bil iz cerkvene stranke”. Ker Janša, ki so ga spravili v zapor, ne more biti več sovražnik številka ena, se sprašujem: Ali bodo zdaj spet prvi nasprotnik “cerkvene stranke”?! Torej lahko pričakujemo, da bomo tarča znova mi, kristjani?! To je diskurz, ki je sam po sebi grozljiv, nesprejemljiv za moderno evropsko državo. Dobro upravljanje evropske Slovenije izključuje take manipulacije, pa tudi to, da se kazenski pregon in druga kazenska sredstva uporablja kot orodje političnega boja.Če je srečanje s pravosodnim ministrom še vedno nekoliko “v zraku”, pa ostaja dejstvo, da ste se srečali denimo s predsednico sodniškega društva, varuhinjo človekovih pravic. Nekateri so vam vendarle pripravljeni prisluhiti.Sprejel nas je tudi predsednik republike. Z vsemi želimo biti v dialogu in zahvaljujemo se vsem, ki to željo spoštujejo in se z nami pogovarjajo. Ampak saj veste, kaj pravi ljudska modrost: besede so poceni. Pričakujemo, da prijaznim nasmeškom sledijo tudi dejanja. Predsednica sodniškega društva je dejala, da se bodo aktivno odzvali na naše pobude. Mi potrpežljivo čakamo. Mimogrede: na sestanku je povedala, da so tudi oni predstavniki civilne družbe, na kar sem ji lahko le odvrnil, da je 24 ur na dan, sedem dni v tednu in 365 dni v letu sodni funkcionar, ne pa predstavnica civilne družbe.Tudi na Odbor 2014 leti očitek, da niste prava, neodvisna civilna družba, temveč privesek ene stranke. Kakšno je razmerje odbora do političnih strank?V odboru delujemo ljudje različnih svetovnih nazorov in političnih prepričanj. Očitki, ki jih omenjate, so bili zelo glasni denimo tri tedne pred volitvami, ko so zaprli voditelja opozicije, češ da je prizadevanje odbora le del predvolilne tekme. Z vztrajanjem dokazujemo, da so bili očitki zlonamerni in zlagani. Nam gre za stvar: za primer obsojenih v zadevi Patria in za to, da se v pravosodju stvari korenito spremenijo na bolje. Kajti tako, kot je, preprosto več ne gre naprej. Samozadostnost in samopašnost tretje veje oblasti se mora enkrat nehati.Kako se financirate?Delo odbora temelji le na prostovoljstvu in prispevkih naših podpornikov. Za razliko od številnih civilnodružbnih organizacij v tej državi ne dobivamo državnih sredstev ali sredstev iz državnih podjetij. Zanje nismo zaprosili in tudi ne bomo. Zahvaljujem se vsem, ki nas podpirajo z udeležbo kot vztrajniki na shodih, nam pišejo spodbudna pisma, darujejo sredstva ... Doslej nas je bilo na različnih shodih pred vrhovnim sodiščem in pred desetimi okrožnimi sodišči že 60.000. Podpirajo nas tudi Slovenci, ki živijo v tujini: v ZDA, Kanadi, Avstraliji, Avstriji, Italiji, Švici, Nemčiji in drugih državah. Hvala vsem!Čim dlje vztrajate, tem večje je tveganje, da boste tarče osebnih diskreditacij.To velja zlasti za vas in kolega Aleša Primca, sicer voditelja Civilne iniciative za družino in pravice otrok. Ne bi bili prvi, ki bi vas doletel “medijski umor” ...S kolegom Alešem sva morda res najbolj izpostavljeni figuri sicer heterogene, a hkrati dopolnjujoče se ekipe, v kateri ni nihče nenadomestljiv. Že sva bila deležna “posebne” obravnave: v medijih so nama šteli delovne ure, preverjali, kdaj hodiva na dopust ... Navsedanje je to prav, saj hočeva tudi midva biti pri svojih prizadevanjih popolnoma pregledna. No, včasih pa stvari le gredo predaleč, ko nas recimo kakšen “prominentni” pravni strokovnjak (tj. penolog Dragan Petrovac; op. B. Š.) razglasi za zametek drhali. Našle bi se še kakšne podobne stvari. Diskreditacije oziroma kar metode specialne vojne iz udbaškega arzenala nas spremljajo že od prvega dne. To smo ne tudi pričakovali, a nas ne ovira, da ne bi nadaljevali svojih prizadevanj: mirno in dostojanstveno, a vendar odločno in nepopustljivo.Omenili ste Udbo. Ali se motim, če trdim, da ste postali izrazito “moteči” predvsem po tem, ko ste spomladi 2013 Arhivu Republike Slovenije, ko ga je še vodil Jože Dežman, vi pa ste bili takrat šef Sove, izročili gradivo SDV? Dotaknili ste se nedotakljivih, dregnili v temna početja in interese še vedno vplivnih elit ...Tri dni, preden sem odšel z direktorskega mesta v Sovi, smo arhivu predali več kot sto škatel gradiva, ki jih na Sovi, če bi moji predhodniki spoštovali zakonodajo, več ne bi smelo biti. V tem gradivu so zelo konkretni dokazi o tem, kaj je počela politična policija. Ne nazadnje: v teh škatlah je bil “primer Crnogorac”, ki je pozneje postal tako znan. Najbolj žalosten in razočaran sem bil, ko sem letos ugotovil, da je stranka, ki ima korenine v pomladanski opciji, zagovarjala, da se tudi to gradivo zapre. Prepričan sem, da se lahko le iz razjasnjenih napak preteklosti naučimo, česa ne smemo ponavljati v prihodnosti. Popolna odprtost in preglednost arhivskega gradiva je nujni pogoj, da se bodo stvari začele izboljševati. Po uveljavitvi novele arhivskega zakona pa se jasno kaže, da prepričevanje o tem, kako z njo arhivsko gradivo ne bo zaprto, temveč kvečjemu še bolj dostopno, nima stvarne podlage. Arhiv je zaprt, gradivo, ki ga dobivajo raziskovalci, pa je velikokrat popolnoma počrnjeno oziroma tako “anonimizirano”, da je v veliki meri neuporabno. To je velika škoda za celotno nacijo in sramota za tiste, ki so takšno stanje podprli.Ali ni zgodba o slovenskem pravosodju pa tudi o nekaterih drugih oblastnih segmentih, kot so obveščevalne službe, v veliki meri ponesrečena zaradi “perpetutiranja” miselnosti in kadrov iz prejšnjega sistema v sedanjega; v njej namreč manjka ostra zareza med totalitarnim in demokratičnim. “Slovenija je država, katere pravo temelji na revolucionarnem pravu in ne na tradiciji zahodnoevropske pravne misli,” ste tudi sami ugotavljali na mednarodnem srečanju, ki ga je priredilo društvoEvropska Slovenija. Ostra ugotovitev …... a empirično dokazljiva! Sodniki in akademiki, kot je bil Leonid Pitamic, so bili po letu 1945, po revolucionarnem prevzemu oblasti, izgnani iz slovenske sodne prakse in teorije. Nadomestili so jih revolucionarni pravniki tipa Ljubo Bavcon, ki so še ne tako davno pisali učbenike o tem, kako je pravo namenjeno pregonu nasprotnikov totalitarnega sistema. No, in taki pravniki imajo še danes kabinete na pravni fakulteti, vedrijo in oblačijo v pravosodju. Kaj takega bi bilo v Nemčiji nemogoče. Naš problem je strašen razkorak med tem, kar smo zapisali, in tem, kar smo udejanjili. Preambula ustave napotuje k zarezi med prejšnjim stanjem, ko so bile sistematično kršene človekove pravice, in demokratično Slovenjo, a je nismo uresničili. Kot članica Evropske unije smo zavezani tudi Lizbonski pogodbi, ki jasno pravi, da povezava zajema navdih iz kulturne, verske in humanistične dediščine Evrope, ki temelji na človekovih pravicah, svobodi, demokraciji, enakosti in pravni državi. Iskreno se vprašajmo: Kaj od tega imamo pri nas? Saj imamo formalno demokracijo, dejanske pa ne; saj imamo formalno pravno državo, dejanske pa ne ... Prav zato ker nismo naredili korenitega reza med totalitarnim in demokratičnim.Najboljša ponazoritev tega stanja je dejstvo, da je bivši šef komunistične partije v demokratični državi postal prvi predsednik z dvema mandatoma. Predstavljajte si, da bi bil Ceausescu predsednik demokratične Romunije ali Honecker predsednik kakšne vzhodnonemške deželne vlade ali pa morda kar zvezne ... Še danes nam prav nekdanji tovariši najglasneje razlagajo, kaj je demokracija, nas podučujejo, kdaj in proti komu smemo demonstrirati in kdaj ne. Sprašujem jih: Od kod pa prihajate? Ustava je jasna, njene vrednote so jasne, če jih vi ne razumete, to ne pomeni, da jih nihče ne razume. No, morda pa jih razumejo, pa jih zavestno ne želijo uresničevati, kar je po svoje še slabše ...Izhodišče in ugotovitve tega pogovora o stanju pravne države pri nas so, milo rečeno, pesimistične. Ali je tak tudi vaš pogled na prihodnost?Nedelujoča pravna država, ki bi jo sicer morala zagotavljati tretja veja oblasti, je tista “os zla”, ki se mora nujno zlomiti, da bi odprli vrata drugačni prihodnosti, v kateri bi lahko bolje delovali tudi zakonodajna in izvršna veja oblasti. To je moje trdno prepričanje. Tudi zato smo najvišjim predstavnikom te “osi zla” ob dnevu pravosodja, ko so si sami podeljevali priznanja, podelili črne zvezde – to je simbol potemnjene, nekoč rdeče zvezde. Z njimi želimo opozoriti, da svojega dela niso dobro opravili, da zaradi njih nismo evropska, temveč balkanska Slovenija. Nekoč sem to stanje primerjal z zgodbo o Titaniku. Afera Patria je ledena gora, v katero se je zaletel Titanik slovenskega pravosodja. Prekati v njem, ki mu zagotavljajo, da lahko pluje še nekaj časa, se postopoma polnijo. Raven vode, zelo umazane vode, se v tem Titaniku nezadržno dviguje in prej ali slej bo doživel takšno usodo, kot jo je resnični parnik. A očitno je potreben tak brodolom zatohle miselnosti, vzorcev in tudi ljudi, da bo slovensko pravosodje postalo drugačno, zares pravično in v službi vladavine prava. Zdaj še ni, a iskreno upam, da po prizadevanjih našega odbora in še koga bo.Vprašanje je le, kateri orkester bo igral, ko se bo ladja potapljala. Pravzaprav to sploh ni vprašanje: orkester prevladujočih medijev veselo igra že precej časa ... Slovenski čas, št. 55, letnik 2014 http://www.druzina.si/ICD/spletnastran.nsf/clanek/pravosodni-trk-v-ledeno-goro

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25.04.2017

Ustavna pritožba zoper sodbo v zadevi Patria

Danes je Franci Matoz, odvetnik Janeza Janše, predstavil ustavno pritožbo zoper sodbo v zadevi Patria. Ustavna pritožba je bila vložena zaradi grobega teptanja ustavnih pravic in Evropske konvencija o varstvu človekovih pravic in temeljnih svoboščin (EKČP). Kršitve se nanašajo na pravico do neodvisnega in nepristranskega sodišča, načelo zakonitosti v kazenskem pravu, pravico do obrambe, enako varstvo pravic in načelo nedolžnosti. Kršeni so bili 22., 23., 27., 28. in 29. člen Ustave RS in 6. člen Evropske konvencija o varstvu človekovih pravic in temeljnih svobošči. V Ustavni pritožbi pritožnik NE predlaga izločitve dokazov, ker jih ni, niti razaveljavitve člena zakona, da si ne bi kdo na ta način elegantno opral rok. Ustavna pritožba je odsegljiva na povezavi:

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25.04.2017

Matej Avbelj: Failed Democracy: The Slovenian Patria Case

The affair started in 2008, a few weeks before the general parliamentary elections, when the Slovenian national TV showed a Finnish documentary claiming that the then Slovenian Prime Minister Janez Janša was bribed by the Finnish arms-selling corporation Patria, which was consequently and as a result awarded the contract with the Slovenian government. The documentary identified the recipient of a bribe exclusively with the letter J, that a couple of years later turned out to stand not for Mr. Janša, but for a Croatian businessman Mr. Jerković. Nevertheless, a huge political controversy understandably broke loose. The political scandal made Mr. Janša finish second in that parliamentary election and resulted in the establishment of the government controlled by the political left. It was only two years later that a direct indictment was brought against Mr. Janša by a state prosecutor who is a wife of an agent of the Slovenian communist secret-service police that arrested Mr. Janša as a political dissident during the reign of the communist regime in the late 1980s. The indictment accused Mr. Janša and others involved in the case for having committed a crime of accepting gifts for illegal intermediation pursuant to Art. 269 of the Slovenian Penal Code. However, the indictment raised a lot of controversy as the criminal offence was literally alleged to have been committed on an undetermined date, at an undetermined place and through an undetermined method of communication. This patently constitutionally flawed indictment nevertheless led to a trial at the local court of Ljubljana, which after a number of months (in between local and another parliamentary election) found the defendants guilty. The case was then appealed to the High Court of Ljubljana on all counts, but the High Court confirmed the ruling of the local court as it stood. Mr. Janša has thus been convicted with the force of res judicata exclusively on the basis of circumstantial evidence for having accepted a promise of an unknown award at a vaguely determined time, at an undetermined place and by an undetermined mode of communication to use his influence, then as a Prime Minister, to have a military contract awarded to the Finnish company Patria The decision of the High Court appeared to be vitiated by a number of patent violations of constitutional rights and principles. The High Court openly stated that neither the time nor the place of the alleged criminal offence are constitutive of the crime, since they merely contribute to the individualization and concretization of the crime. The High Court went even further by ruling that the fact that the crime was allegedly committed through an undetermined method of communication is unproblematic, as the act of accepting the award is sufficiently defined in the abstract provision contained in the Penal Code. Moreover, the High Court stressed a number of times that the wording of Art. 269 of the Slovenian Penal Code was open-textured, but instead of construing it narrowly in line with the requirements of lex certa, the Court used it as a way of attributing the criminal act to the defendant. Finally, the High Court at times even appeared to be shifting the burden of proof on the defendant, who has thus been forced to acquit himself from the indictment, which has, as phrased, effectively disabled him to present any alibi or to prepare a meaningful defense. As a result, the defendant Mr. Janša sought a direct relief at the Constitutional Court by filing a constitutional complaint prior exhausting the extraordinary legal remedy at the Supreme Court. In what follows, the paper describes and critically analyzes the decision of the Constitutional Court and the events that followed thereafter. The events that, unfortunately, demonstrate severe rule of law problems in Slovenia and which push this country into the group of the de facto failed constitutional democracies. II. Introduction On June 11 2014 the Constitutional Court of Slovenia ruled 6:3 to reject the constitutional complaint lodged by Janez Janša, the first indicted and convicted by final judgement in the Patria case. The decision Up-373/14-222 led not only to unprecedentedly critical dissenting opinions from the three judges who voted against it, but also spurred criticism from the most prominent lawyers in the country, former justices of the Constitutional Court known in the public for their varied world views. The severity of this internal and external critique alone would call for a detailed analysis. The need for such an analysis is, however, further strengthened by the complexity of the entire context of the Patria case. For almost 8 years this case has burdened Slovenian public space, in media-political, and therefore democratic, terms; and in legal terms for almost half this period. This leads me to undertake the analysis of the decision and of the whole trial through the prism of the law in context approach. This long-established conceptual approach to understanding law is professed in particular, yet not exclusively, by law-and-society scholarship. One of its core tenets is that law is conditioned by its widest social context; the latter, in turn, is simultaneously conditioned by law.3 Selznick thus writes: “If positive law shades into a broader realm of enabling or limiting conditions, thecharacter of the legal order as a whole – positive law plus its premises, institutions, and its sustaining culture – is also framed by and implicated in a particular social and historical context.” We have to keep this context in mind for it is with awareness of, or even with fidelity to, context that we can avoid legal formalism. Plain legal formalism, as we shall see, not only means poor implementation of law, it can also become lawlessness itself. The conduct of the Slovenian judiciary in the Patria case, crowned by the passive permissiveness of the Constitutional Court, has pushed us to the very margins of the Slovenian Radbruch formula. To substantiate this alarming thesis, I shall commence with a description of the Constitutional Court’s controversial decision. I shall then critically examine it: starting from its own premises; then investigating these premises against the case referred to as a precedent in the decision of the Court; and finally in light of the exceptionally critical dissenting opinions. Lastly, I intend to set the decision of the majority at the Constitutional Court in the wider context of the Patria case: the impact on democracy in the Republic of Slovenia and the increasingly revealing picture of the state of the rule of law in Slovenia as constituted (in a legal sense) by all judicial actors, in particular judges, and, of course, the academic legal profession. III. The Decision of the Constitutional Court In this case the Constitutional Court was requested to consider a constitutional complaint lodged before all other legal remedies were exhausted. The legal basis for such exceptional action is stipulated in the second paragraph of Article 51 of the Constitutional Court Act (CCA). This reads: “Before all extraordinary legal remedies have been exhausted, the Constitutional Court may exceptionally decide on a constitutional complaint if the alleged violation is manifest and if irreparable consequences for the complainant would result from the implementation of a certain act.” The petitioner alleged “manifest (prima facies)” violations of the rights from Article 22, the first paragraph of Article 23, Article 27, the first paragraph of Article 28 and Article 29 of the Constitution, as well as Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights. He went on to concretize these violations. He also proposed withholding of the execution of the judgment of the ordinary courts, referring to the irreparable consequences of imprisonment for his personal freedom as well as for the exercise of his passive electoral right in light of the forthcoming parliamentary elections. The Constitutional Court rejected the complaint on the basis that the conditions from the second paragraph of Article 51 of the CCA were not met. The rejection of the complaint consists of several arguments; however, they all seem to create the impression (intentionally or unintentionally) that the majority of the Court strove to find ways to avoid (or postpone) the admission of the constitutional complaint. In its first argument the Constitutional Court dwells at length on the constitutionally defined inter-institutional relationship between the Constitutional Court and the Supreme Court. This relationship is distilled down to the importance of mutual respect between legal institutions, preventing one institution from assuming the tasks of another on the basis of a presumption of distrust. The rejection of the constitutional complaint is thus founded primarily on trust in the Supreme Court, along with the need to respect the division of jurisdiction and in pursuit of the best possible constitutional reasoning. To achieve the latter, the Constitutional Court’s knowledge of the positions and the practices of the ordinary courts, in particular the highest court in the country, are of decisive importance. It is for these constitutionally-structural reasons that the majority of the judges think that the Constitutional Court should exercise restraint in regard to application of the exception from Article 51 of the CCA. In the second argument, the Constitutional Court seeks reasons for restraint in the wording of Article 51 of the CCA itself, interpreting it very restrictively.12 This restrictive reading of the concept of exceptionality is later re-applied by the Court in its attempt to interpret the notion of manifest violations. The Court refers to the precedent case Up-62/96 dated April 11 1996, where the notion of manifest violation was defined as “such that it cannot be disproved or "undermined" even after comprehensiveexamination, since all circumstances, common sense and experience, without evidencing and with no possibility of counter-arguing, exclude any possibility of a different conclusion.” The Court then announces the application of the above defined judicial test to the concrete case of the asserted violations of human rights. It concludes that “the constitutional complaintcontains serious allegations of violations of the petitioner's human rights, which require careful, accurate and thorough analysis,” however this seriousness does not meet the required standard for manifest violation. The reasoning? A judgment based exclusively on circumstantial evidence is in itself not a manifest violation, because “the Constitutional Court has hitherto not yet establishedconstitutional standards, against which the justification of the alleged violation could be assessed.” 16 If however the Constitutional Court were to conclude that such a judgment complies with the law, this would “engender additional questions [which, as the Constitutional Court readily admits, the petitioner is explicitly asking anyway] as to in how far a particular judgment can be based on circumstantial evidence (only); what the description of a criminal act should entail in such cases; and how concretized those conclusions should be which the Court has deduced from proven facts, after eliminating all other possible logical conclusions.” The Constitutional Court claims that “all of this has to be subjected to a serious and thoroughconstitutional review in order for clear answers to be formed and in order for clear constitutional standards in respect of these human rights to be established.” However, the Supreme Court has to have the first say, as these questions pertain to both criminal and constitutional law.  The Constitutional Court draws similar conclusions with regard to other alleged violations: it either rejects them as not manifest or else restates that it has hitherto not yet passed a judgement on the relevant constitutional question and that this should be done by the Supreme Court. Since the standard for manifest violation of human rights therefore is not met, the Constitutional Court does not even proceed to assess the potentially irreparable consequences for the petitioner. Instead, it simply rejects the constitutional complaint. IV. Critical Analysis of the Decision of the Constitutional Court The decision presented above is unconvincing even on its own premises. As seen above, it is founded primarily on the principle of inter-institutional trust towards the Supreme Court; the latter has, at least to date, failed to justify this trust. Even though the Constitutional Court cautions that the allegations of human rights violations are serious and although it explicitly quotes the provision from Article 423 of the Criminal Procedure Act which gives the Supreme Court the legal power to withhold or suspend the execution of a criminal sanction (depending on the content of the request lodged for protection of legality) and thus to guarantee effectiveness of the extraordinary legal remedy, the Supreme Court has so far failed to do so. On the contrary, according to media reports, the Supreme Court has also washed its hands, referring the petitioner to the District Court for a decision on withholding criminal sanction, in the meantime the judge-rapporteur would be on holiday! 22 The rejection of the constitutional complaint and the consequent inaction of the Supreme Court left the petitioner de facto without an available effective legal remedy to defend his personal liberty and passive electoral right. This renders the supporting reason for rejecting the constitutional complaint void, while Slovenia evidently risks sanction by the European Court of Human Right under Article 6 of the ECHR. In light of the above, the efforts of the Constitutional Court to interpret the wording of Article 51 of the CCA as restrictively as possible are also completely unconvincing. The Constitutional Court performs an act of a genuinely conservative semantic acrobatics by linguistically enhancing the exceptionality of the procedure stipulated in Article 51 of the CCA. It achieves this by underlining that the Act uses the discretionary term “can, with emphasis on exceptionally.” Since a constitutional complaint is a subsidiary legal remedy, the powers from the above mentioned article can only be used “really exceptionally.” The Constitutional Court further insists on “how exceptional” a decision on a constitutional complaint under this article should be by listing its jurisprudence. It is not entirely clear what purpose these linguistic bravura serve, other than informing us in several places that exceptional is truly and so very exceptional, and by no means only exceptional. Their purpose is even less clear given the Constitutional Court anyway relies on its own standard for “manifest” human rights violation, whereas this standard is, as we shall see later, so restrictive in its substance that it is legally-logically untenable. The standard for manifest violation is derived from the above mentioned precedent Up-62/96 dated April 11 1996 which, although asserted differently, has only been selectively followed by the majority at the Constitutional Court. The decision indeed reiterates the standard for manifest violation; however, unlike the precedent case the majority this time does not actually apply the standard, with the exception of point 24. Unlike the decision Up-62/9626 the decision Up-373/14-22 does not contain a first-hand explanation as to why the alleged violations are not manifest. All we learn is that the “allegations of violations are serious” and “that they must be the subject to a serious constitutional review in order for clear constitutional standards to be established.”  Ultimately, however, the allegations are not reviewed, because “the Constitutional Court has not to date established such constitutional standards against which it would be possible to assess the merits of the alleged violation.” Take note: the fact that the Constitutional Court has not yet established jurisprudence in areas where difficult issues of criminal and constitutional law are raised has nothing of course to do with the question of whether the human rights violations are manifest or not. The two issues are completely independent. If the violation is manifest, the Court has to decide upon it; even more so if the constitutional standards supposedly do not yet exist. In particular if the petitioner is in prison. Under no circumstances should it be possible to deny that a violation is manifest because constitutional standards have not yet been established. And just because the Constitutional Court cannot or even does not know how to decide in the matter, should the ordinary courts indeed try first? As the Constitutional Court points out how unfavorable its position is due to the lack of clearly developed constitutional standards, I cannot but criticize isolationism. What about the comparative constitutional view? The Slovenian Constitutional Court is hardly the first in the world facing these questions. In many previous cases it managed to establish exemplary cooperation in judicial dialogue and in the practice of migration of constitutional standards in the era of so called new constitutionalism. Not this time though, although it would not need to search far. It would suffice to look into the separate opinion of Justice Peter Jambrek in the precedent Up-62/96, in which he compares Article 51 of the CCA with German regulation. The latter probably served as a model for the Slovenian one in the first place. Last but not least, even if the Constitutional Court of Slovenia had been the first in the world facing such a case, it would be expected - at least from the examples of the prominent highest courts abroad which wish to leave their imprint on the development of constitutional law - that the Court would seize such a case with both hands in order to establish the missing constitutional standards. Regardless of all the above, it is especially significant that the Constitutional Court majority overlooks that the standard for manifest violation from the decision Up-62/96 is obviously logically untenable. Not only is this clearly pointed out in the dissenting opinion of Justice Ernest Petrič, 31 it also derives from the dissenting opinion of Justice Boštjan M. Zupančič on the precedent decision to which the majority of the Constitutional Court clings so firmly, yet obviously selectively: “[…] the majority refused to decide upon the content of a first-rate constitutionalmatter on a formality, as if the law (the CCA) prevents them from doing so. They thus neglected the distinction between a prescriptive and an instrumental norm and harnessed the cart in front of the horse, which should be pulling the cart.” 32 In both cases the Constitutional Court majority interpreted the procedural requirement for manifest violation alike: in order to be allowed early admission to constitutional review the constitutional complaint must fulfil such a standard of violation that there wouldn't be much for the Constitutional Court to do at the actual constitutional review itself. If a manifest violation of human rights satisfies the procedural requirement for admission of the constitutional complaint solely when “it cannot be disproved or ‘undermined’ even after comprehensive examination, since all circumstances, common sense and experience, without evidencing and with no possibility of counter-arguing, exclude any possibility of a different conclusion”, then this procedural requirement automatically pre-determines the decision on substance. This is the very putting the cart in front of the horse, which is logically absurd and as such indicates a misinterpretation of Article 51 of the CCA. In addition, it is worth pointing out that the precedent Up-62/96 itself stands on very shaky constitutional foundations. Namely inherent to the case is an extremely questionable constitutional maneuver: after the three-member senate decided that the Court would hear the constitutional complaint, and after this decision was already made public, the Constitutional Court majority in plenum decided to reject the already admitted constitutional complaint. This happened even though the substantive decision-making of the Constitutional Court in full composition should only lead either to rejection or acceptance of the (substance of) the constitutional complaint. To sum up: the decision on rejection of the constitutional complaint faces a whole lot of troubles. The Constitutional Court rejects the constitutional complaint because it trusts in the Supreme Court and even instructs it to effectively protect the rights of the petitioner. This does not happen, however. The Constitutional Court justifies its decision with reference to precedent, a case controversial in itself. In doing so the Court takes on the standard for manifest violation and enhances it so far that practically no early constitutional complaint could fulfil it - as indeed in the last nine years, no constitutional complaint has. This is not surprising because such a standard is logically-legally untenable. On top of everything the Constitutional Court does not even actually apply this unfulfillable standard in its decision: there is no case by case reasoning as to why the alleged violations of human rights are not manifest. Also, the Constitutional Court, unlike in the precedent, despite or due to the unfulfilled condition for manifest violation, does not examine the requirement of the irreparable consequences which might justify a truly extraordinary exceptionality of this case. Such analysis can (only) be found in the dissenting opinions. V. Dissenting Opinions: Common Sense and Experience Dissenting opinions were written by Justices Jan Zobec, Mitja Deisinger and Ernest Petrič. They were united in the view that the Constitutional Court should admit the constitutional complaint, regardless of its insistence on the judicial test of the standard for manifest violation. Justice Zobec was the clearest in his claim that all three requirements are fulfilled: the manifestly violated human rights, irreparable consequences as well as the exceptionality of the case as an additional condition. The fulfilment of the second requirement is the simplest to ascertain since imprisonment always represents irreparable damage for the complainant.36 All three dissenting opinions also see the required standard for manifest violation met on a number of levels, most evidently from the aspect of the principle of legality as defined in the first paragraph of Article 28 of the Constitution, as well as from the consequently related right to effective defence as stipulated in Article 29 of the Constitution. The Prosecution, the District Court and the Higher Court were all aware of the fact, notorious from the beginning of proceedings and reiterated in the assertions of the complainant as well as in cautions from some quarters of the legal profession, that the complainant was first indicted and then sentenced for a criminal act that remains un-individualized, un-concretized and even abstract when it comes to how it was committed. This was confirmed fully by the three dissenting opinions. Justice Deisinger writes that a careful examination of the contested rulings shows that the court “took the prosecutor's place and transformed itself into a double(unconstitutional) role of court and prosecution.”As was most clearly pointed out by former constitutional Justice Franc Testen, this was a case of violation of the most fundamental, civilizational procedural principle: no plaintiff, no judge. This was further affirmed by another former constitutional Justice Matevž Krivic, when he publicly cautioned that Mr. Janša's sentence is based on proceeding with “a flaw so severe, although visible only to the most skilled lawyers' eyes, that it only has to make it to the Supreme Court - and the sentence will fall.” It is a case of a violation so grave that the indictment proposal should have been rejected and the proceedings on such basis should never have been started in the first place. It calls for replacing the sentence of the District Court with an acquittal. This violation is “clear, obvious and flagrant.” Furthermore, the alleged violation is also logically completely untenable. As Justice Zobec writes most insightfully, if the crucial element of a criminal act is neither recounted nor proven and it remains on an abstract level only, which is explicitly affirmed by the attempt of the Higher Court to help out the District Court which ruled verbatim that the crime: the acceptance of the promise of a reward was committed through ‘unidentified means of communication’,  “then the fundamental legal logical operation, the one that leads to sentencing and simultaneously means conclusion of the principle of legality in criminal law, becomes impossible. A subsumption of a concrete act under an abstract legal provision, a combination of both aspects of the principle of legality - that pertaining to the lawmaker (…) as well as that pertaining to the prosecution and consequently the judge (concretization and individualization of a criminal act).” Justice  Zobec  proceeds  by adding a  passage  which  undoubtedly constitutes  a  classic  of Slovenian constitutional law and theory, in particular of legal practice and reasoning: “It is evident to anybody that the subsumption of the abstract under the abstract is a logical nonsense for the same cannot be subsumed under the same, it can merely be equated (tautology); for a syllogism is not a tautology. And it is clear to anybody that it is impossible to defend oneself against an abstract allegation. From the aspect of constitutional process law (the safeguard from Article 28 of the Constitution) this means that a person can only be sentenced for a concretely committed act.” Justice Zobec concludes that this is something so self-evident that it also renders the condition for exceptionality fulfilled and thus allows the Constitutional Court to decide immediately, without waiting for the Supreme Court.44  This is of particular importance when the sentence of imprisonment is ruled in “flagrantly unfair trial” against the leader of the biggest opposition party, his imprisonment three weeks before elections fundamentally affecting the democratic process in the country as well as the legitimacy of the election outcome.  Justice Deisinger goes even a step further in his conclusion when he justifiably questions the very possibility of ensuring an impartial and hence a just trial for the complainant. This question has since been further validated with the recent address of the President of the Supreme Court at the annual event ‘Days of Judiciary’, where he shared the stage with the very same supreme public prosecutor who represented the indictment against the complainant. This took place after the constitutional complaint was lodged and before the request for protection of legality was filed. All of the above already moves us towards the wider context of the Patria case. However, before I focus on it, I should touch upon the reasons behind such a big discrepancy between the positions of the Constitutional Court’s minority and that of the majority. Since I am neither sociologist nor psychologist, I cannot provide a definite answer to this question. It seems to me though that the answer is hidden somewhere in the definition of the judicial test for manifest violation which the Constitutional Court chose to apply. There, among other things, it is stated that the perception of manifest violations of human rights depends also on “common sense and experience.” VI. Law in Context One of the most noticeable differences between the Constitutional Court majority and the minority in this case is the degree to which they recognize and highlight the wider context of the Patria case. As we have seen, the majority founds its decision on semantic assumptions of Article 51 of the CCA, on its past jurisprudence as well as on trust in the ordinary courts and division of labour between them. They do not deliberate on the consequences of their decision, at least not in the text itself. Nor do they define their point of view towards the consequences, although the petitioner refers to their irreparable nature. They fail to do so notwithstanding awareness of the fact that we are in the middle of an election campaign, three weeks before the election and that physical removal of the petitioner, the leader of the opposition, cannot remain without effect on the fair conduct of elections, and on the legitimacy of the outcome. For where else in Europe are opposition leaders imprisoned just before the election? It is evident that the majority at the Constitutional Court was not interested in these kinds of issues in this instance; just as, interestingly enough, another majority had not been interested in similar issues back in 1997 in the case that served as precedent in the case at hand. Back then, Justice Zupančic warned strongly in his separate opinion that the Constitutional Court avoided its jurisdiction and thus its responsibility in a case of capital importance out of legally-technical reasons, or more accurately because it assessed the “procedural requirements” too strictly. Instead of demonstrating the breadth of constitutional review, intended as the “main antidote to formalistic legal reasoning,” the Constitutional Court did just the opposite.Back then as well as today. The only difference is that the capital importance of today's case is redoubled from the aspect of constitutional law. The majority at the Constitutional Court today assumes both responsibility for the loss of personal freedom of an individual, as well as responsibility for the unfairness of elections and their potential illegitimacy. Of course, such a risk (of responsibility) is always present. However, it becomes most obvious when there are not only circumstantial but also direct evidence (in the form of almost consensus from those legal professionals who spoke out in the Patria case) that the trial, which has been suspect from the very start, was concluded as a flagrantly unfair one, and that it should never even have started in the first place. The chronology of the Patria case is rather long and complex, yet without it we cannot understand the controversy of the conduct of the Constitutional Court, the ordinary courts, the prosecution and those most pertinent experts in criminal law who should have been the first to raise their voices to stop the trial as it was developing with disrespect to legal standards. The Patria case was launched, and has developed ever since, as a sensational media story and an explosive political affair. It has always gained momentum before elections, then temporarily subsided only to be reignited time and time again. It has been an instrument of political struggle which, on the one hand, would not be that unusual even for a democracy of the western type. On the other hand, in such a democracy with a plural media space, the case would have come to a rightful conclusion much earlier. In Slovenia, the case is still dragging on even though it has been clear for a long time that the letter J from the Finnish TV documentary does not mean ‘Janša’, but some Croatian businessman ‘Jerković’. The case started to interest lawyers only once it acquired legal dimensions. This happened when the indictment was filed. It was filed by the wife of the former communist secret police agent who 25 years ago pursued and arrested the first-indicted in the Patria case. The content of the indictment was unprecedented for the wider public: it contained an unknown time, place and means. At least to me, it was clear from the very start that such an indictment should not and cannot become part of established practice (unless we are bringing about a Kafkaesque reality). I introduced this opinion at an event of the Academic Lawyers’ Association at the University of Ljubljana which was almost cancelled due to pressure from unnamed, but supposedly very respected Slovenian lawyers. The stakes were obviously high. This is further confirmed by the conduct of the parties of the trial. The prosecution took up work at full steam. According to the latest claims of the defence (which were contested by the prosecution) it went so far as handpicking mainly incriminating documents. Should these claims be confirmed, it would be a clear case of a breach of the principle of equality of arms. The indicted and his party on the other hand took a defensive stance, combined with periodical verbally sharp and symbolic attacks on the judiciary. The latter has defended itself in an auto-poetic and self-sufficient way and has tried to hide their faces from the public. Occasionally, however, this defensive pose was interrupted by some excesses. Since these were already comprehensively documented by Vlad Perju from Boston College, I do not intend to repeat them here. However, it is worth singling out the example of a Higher Court judge who publicly congratulated the District Court judge for the courageous sentencing (then not yet legally binding); and who likened the protest of the supporters of the sentenced in front of the court to the hysterical reactions of North Korean children at the visits of Kim Jong Un. It goes without saying that such behavior from a judge of the Higher Court does not contribute to the appearance of impartiality of the judiciary, one of the postulates of a fair trial. The appearance of impartiality was compromised even more directly with the thunderous performance of the President of the Supreme Court in front of a crowd of judges gathered at the annual event "Days of Judiciary". He used that occasion for tirades against both the defendant, who at the time had an open deadline for a request for extraordinary legal remedy at the Supreme Court, as well as against one of the constitutional judges. In addition, the very same supreme public prosecutor who achieved the final sentence in the Patria case and is also likely to be involved in the extraordinary legal remedy proceedings also took part at the event. Justice Deisinger is thus right to point out that all of the above casts strong doubt on whether the complainant's right to a fair trial can actually be guaranteed under these circumstances. This doubt is reaffirmed in the above mentioned independent opinion of Vlad Perju. It is also echoed in cautions coming from some Slovenian professional organizations. Such opinions did not find expression in the main Slovenian media outlets: the latter reported on the Patria case practically in terms of the presumption of guilt. Despite the fact that the process has been suspect and conducted in a legally unusual manner from its very beginning, and despite warnings from prominent legal experts including self-professed political opponents of the accused, a different narrative prevailed in the media. That this is a case of corruption where direct evidence is by the very nature of things impossible; and that the judiciary should be trusted and respected even when it delivers a sentence exclusively on the basis of circumstantial evidence and even when the sentence relates to a criminal act, committed in a way that does not even require description, since it has been sufficiently defined in the abstract legal provision of a Penal Code. 54 In a number of instances an impression (by the media at least) was created that all of the above, as unusual as it might appear, is permissible - in regard to this very convict at any rate. According to prevailing public opinion, perpetuated among others by influential opinion leaders and intellectuals, he should probably have been put behind bars long ago, at least for the alleged, but never proven, arms deals during the Slovenian independence war. To sum up, the legal and political dimensions of the Patria case have been intertwined all along. This was also achieved in part by the extreme restraint of the academic legal profession. In my opinion, the latter has traditionally proven to be sterile and practically silent, be it in cases of momentous decisions of the courts or else in other seismic legal developments in Slovenian society. The Patria case is an example of such a paradigmatic case which, according to the unwritten rule established by the profession, is not to be discussed. Due to the circumstances of the case, those of us who did talk about it are labelled as a priori political, supposedly “right-wing” lawyers, as “the black ones” and due to the person in the trial as “janšist”. The label is attached regardless of the substance of our analyses - truth be told, they were not all equally convincing. On the other hand the “left-wing” lawyers seem not to exist, nor are there any “left-wing” academics. The latter are publicly presented as neutral, although, as it transpires later on, the nature of their employment puts them in an open conflict of interests. All of these, along with the silent majority of the academic legal profession, are and remain neutral, non-political and therefore professional. Such labels are insincere and unfounded. It is perfectly clear that every personally mature individual, in particular a lawyer, does not only have his own worldview but also his political convictions. Every legal expert, in particular a university professor who educates future generations of students, should also have his own professional academic integrity, which obliges him to overcome his political views and to uphold what is right. Without this, if society lacks an intellectual nucleus, especially among lawyers, to coherently champion values and principles and what is right (as derived at least from the Constitution), if morality and ethics were made obsolete in the spirit of positivism, then truly anything is permissible and possible in such a society, especially if you are in the minority or in opposition. Thus it is also possible that nobody is particularly upset when three constitutional judges and some of their former colleagues describe the proceedings in the Patria case as flagrantly unfair. Nobody is particularly troubled when the majority at the Constitutional Court rejects a constitutional complaint out of trust that the Supreme Court will guarantee effective legal protection anyway. The latter, however, does practically nothing, quoting holidays (sic!) among other reasons. It publicly rebukes the convict, already imprisoned, that this is his own fault since he did not use another legal remedy (at the District Court) for withholding the imprisonment. This entire farce would not have taken place had the pertinent distinguished legal experts, especially university professors from the areas related to the Patria case, explained publicly at the very outset what Justice Zobec has written: “In our country (as well as elsewhere in the normal, civilized world) nobody should be sentenced for an abstract act. In our country, someone could only be sentenced for their actual actions. This is something so self-evident […]” Instead, the process, which according to the opinion of distinguished legal experts should not have been initiated to begin with, has taken a full four years, moving from one instance of jurisdiction to another, and it is still not finished. It is at least and indeed extremely unusual that even the Constitutional Court doesn't realise what irreparable consequences might affect the petitioner, an eminent politician (mostly in opposition), who goes from election to election encumbered by the weight of a “legally non-existing” process. As the former constitutional Justice Krivic wrote, it is not only the prerogative of Janša's voters but also the right of his opponents to know the truth about the legal untenability of this process. Otherwise, in particular in the context of the unbalanced media presentation, the process has a fatal impact on voting preferences, it distorts them and in fact distorts the legitimacy of the democratic process. This consequently deforms the parliamentary political process, founded on fair elections and the outcomes of such process. In the last instance, democracy itself is distorted. It is therefore in everybody's interest that the Patria case comes to a legally binding conclusion with a substantive decision. It is also in everybody's interest to dissolve any doubts as to whether the complainant has or has not committed the criminal act. It is in everybody's interest to eliminate any suspicion that the Patria case might be a politically motivated trial. Given all the circumstances of the case it is not unusual for a reasonable person to share the concern of our most prominent writer Drago Jančar, who writes apprehensively: “There is every indication that this is a case of political trial. Beyond circumstantial evidence, there is unambiguous direct evidence for this. It is hard to believe that this is possible in a democratic country.” I still try to believe that it is not possible and I share the view of Justice Deisinger that this suspicion will be refuted by the Slovenian judiciary itself: “The decision of the Court in regard to withholding or the suspension of theimprisonment will in itself demonstrate on an empirical level whether the position of the Constitutional Court on effective legal remedy with the request for the protection of legality is confirmed or refuted. The later the pronouncement of the breach of the Constitution or the European Convention on Human Rights – be it at a particular instance of the proceedings, constitutional review or through the European Court of Human Rights decision - the harder the consequences will be for the whole judiciary. What if the entire criminal proceedings against the complainant from the filing of the indictment onwards transpires to have been illegal, in contradiction with the Constitution and the European Convention on Human Rights, along with violating human rights? An impartial judiciary should keep this fallout in mind when it makes decision.” VII. Vestiges of the Past – Burdens for the Present An impartial and independent judiciary in a well-ordered, normal, constitutional democracy should also be aware that its quality depends first and foremost upon itself and its corrective mechanisms. The judiciary should not be subjected to just any criticism, especially if it is vacuously rude or inexact. But it can be a subject to well-argued criticism. Albeit supposedly the weakest branch, judiciary is a form of power too. However, historic cases, when human rights were grossly violated on Slovenian soil with the support of or even through the judiciary, are not rare. This part of our recent history remains unresolved and it is still painful and traumatic to many. Representatives of the judiciary should thus avoid rehashing and reviving it with, at the minimum, irresponsible if not un-constitutional behavior, such as dressing up as Tito’s pioneers and dancing with the flag of the former Yugoslavia.The same also applies to presumed personal or at least ideological continuity with the former regime - something that a significant proportion of the public is strongly convinced about - and not unjustifiably. The most honorable and virtuous solution to this challenge was proposed by Silvij Šikovec, the judge who in the former regime convicted two priests for blessing a memorial to “national traitors.” This is what he said when parts of the public criticized the appointment of the Head of the Slovenian Prosecution Zvonko Fišer, who brought the indictment in that case: “Even at this time, after 31 years, I do not want to comment on my decision at all. It was made in a particular time and place and founded on different legislation. It speaks, however, as any other decision, also about me, the judge who was deciding in this case. We cannot change the past, but we can learn from it. In this sense I find lacking, even in times after the democratic change, a serious and thorough discussion about human rights violations. The discussion should take place within the judiciary in particular, with no political divisions.” According to media reports, he also concluded: “On a symbolic level, especially from the perspective of those affected, the feeling that nothing has really changed is growing stronger. Twenty years after the change of the system, I personally don't see the need for those of us who held high judicial offices in the former system to run for such offices now. Especially if this triggers reactions which could raise doubts about the functioning of the rule of law and protection of human rights.” Were this actually to be the case, the throwing around of terms such as “Murgle trials” in the public space could be stopped as well as suspicions about the (im)partiality of the judiciary that re-appear time and time again from this or the other side. It would enable us to publicly acknowledge that what was evidently an inadequate break with the past, along with extremely high retention rates of elites, led to the current situation in which our judiciary, as well as practically the entire state and in fact civil-society apparatus, are filled with people who are directly or indirectly in different ways, most often even through family relations, connected with the personnel of the old political set.  This should be publicly acknowledged as a challenge which needs an adequate, organic and constitutional solution. The Slovenian judiciary would thus improve its reputation on the symbolic level itself, something that would probably be reaffirmed through judicial statistics – an area that causes concern due to figures both from home courts and the courts abroad. Until this actually happens, the state of the Slovenian judiciary is probably very close to the depiction from the Op-ed “Mehki trebuh” by Justice Zobec. 67As the old saying goes: don’t kill the messenger. He or she cannot be guilty for bringing the news about a given situation and going at him will change nothing. What is needed instead is a well-argued, self-reflective, and above all self-critical discussion about the assertions from this article. Such discussion could be very sharp, but it has to be conducted in good faith in order to allow the forming of such a legal order, both in theory and in practice, as required by the Slovenian Constitution. The onus is on all of us: in particular the lawyers holding key offices at institutions of state and those at our universities. It is our duty to assure that legal proceedings are not exploited or even misused for political objectives, such as the elimination of a political opponent which increasingly appears to be the case in the Patria case. It is also our duty to guarantee effective and lawful prosecution of crimes, especially in the economy and politics, holding everybody who has been legally proven guilty accountable for their actions. It is imperative to relieve Slovenia of the burden of a hijacked state. This is the context within which the Patria case took place. It includes the Constitutional Court, which (due to the above mentioned reasons and thanks to six of its members) failed to complete its task as required by the best understanding of the constitutional law in the Slovenian context. The onus, on the basis of explicit trust of the Constitutional Court, is now upon the Supreme Court. If the latter fails to complete the task, Slovenia will be in serious peril of reaching such levels of unfairness and legal untenability in regard to the personal freedom of the imprisoned individual, as well as in regard to fair and legitimate elections, that in a metaphorical sense the Slovenian Rubicon of the Radbruch formula could even be transgressed. Given the already too-high levels of unfairness and legal untenability, Slovenia is beginning to be talked and reported about as the only EU Member State with a political prisoner, we should not allow ourselves any further slipping downwards.

preberi več

25.04.2017

ddr. Klemen Jaklič: On Truth And Justice

On Truth and Justice: the Trial of Janez Janša In the Slovenian Patria trial the case specifically against Janez Janša has, legally speaking, never existed. I claim that the one who explains or even decides that it has does not make one’s ruling on the basis of law. One either does not understand the very essence of the constitutional requirement that everyone is to be treated in accordance with »due process of law«. Or, is driven by motives that are external to the law and aim at one, and one goal alone: conviction, because this particular person must be convicted. Personally and professionally, legal scholars must feel the strongest moral obligation to object and fight against this kind of travesty, as opposed to administration, of justice. This must be so anywhere and regardless of who the victim might be. Names must not matter to us. Legally speaking, the case against Janez Janša is imaginary not only because, as several leading Slovenian legal scholars have already publicly explained, the unidentified facts do not match the elements of the criminal act as defined by Article 269 of the Slovenian Criminal Code. It is a forced fabrication also due to so many identified acts that represent a direct breach of the basic constitutional requirement that everyone is to be treated non-arbitrarily, according to due process of law. The following are just four (out of many) examples in illustration.   Firstly, in addition to international jurisprudence there is also an unequivocal judgment by the Slovenian Supreme Court, nr. 153/2012, from May 1, 2012, elaborating in a similar case one of the basic legal standards for prosecution and trial based on due process of law as opposed to mere arbitrary persecution. The Supreme Court stated the following: »The charges are general and without a touch with specific individual acts. As such they do not allow for the defendant to defend himself. No special justification and analysis are needed to conclude that, clearly, a defendant can only defend himself against charges that he committed a specifically described criminal act, and not that he committed the act at an unidentified time, against unidentified persons, in an unidentified manner, and the like…Each of the charges against a specific act needs to be based on a matrix of data determining the individual act as defined by the identified necessary components«. Whoever ignores a precedent of this clarity (the prosecution explicitly used phrases like “at an unidentified time” at an “unidentified location”, through an “unidentified method of communication”, etc) and does not even respond to its ruling – neither at the prosecution nor the trial stage – acts in direct contradiction with the constitutional requirement of fair treatment according to due process of law. Among others, those are the requirements of Article 2 of the Slovenian Constitution and of Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights.   Secondly, the prosecutor who filed the charge to the court knew that she was in direct conflict of interest guarded against by the Constitution. Legally, it is a serious issue that the prosecutor’s husband and the accused have been, as it is publicly known, in significant and continuous conflict ever since that person was involved in the arrest and interrogation of the dissident Janez Janša during the events that led to Slovenia’s independence some twenty years ago. Clearly, either the particular prosecutor should have withdrawn herself from such a case, or the prosecutors’ office should have done that. That should have been done especially since the replacement was easily possible, which means that the impartiality of treatment could have been easily secured. There are explicit common European standards against such conflict of interest elaborated by the Council of Europe in this area (and those are necessarily part of the Slovenian Constitution as well) that the prosecution has thereby directly violated. Whoever simply ignores such a requirement does not however only violate the common European standards and thus the Slovenian Constitution, but also makes it clear that – willingly or not – he/she is acting arbitrarily, according to measures and motives outside of law.   Thirdly, the prosecution filed their charge through the so-called indictment proposal, not through the regular indictment. Unlike the second, the first is a simplified version of a charge that is not checked for sufficient justification by an independent judge and instead leads directly to a trial. To the extent that this legislation also permits persecution of political leaders without any chance of a preliminary judicial check (when such a check would easily be possible without any harm to the effectiveness of a justified prosecution), it is almost surely unconstitutional. Among others, it violates the constitutional rights of every citizen to free and fair elections. When it is possible to involve a leading politician into a trial based on wholly unchecked indictment proposals, this presents a grave danger of severely distorting a political process. Such an interference can in effect even abolish the whole institute of free, fair, and equal elections. Ye this goes against a clear line of constitutional case-law requiring from the legislature to use milder means (i.e. milder for the constitutional rights involved) whenever those milder means achieve the desired ends (administration of justice through justified prosecution) just as effectively, or almost as effectively, as the means that are more restrictive of the constitutional rights. This is the so-called principle of proportionality as applied by constitutional scrutiny that is especially strict when the rights to free, fair, and equal elections are at stake. In the case at hand it is obvious that such a milder, but equally effective means, clearly does exist: any criminal charge against a political leader (e.g. Prime Minister or Opposition Leader) could be prosecuted through the regular indictment that does include a preliminary judicial check as to its justifiability. The trial judge was aware of these serious doubts. They were publicly expressed by the country’s several leading constitutional scholars (including two former Chief Justices of the Constitutional Court). She nonetheless chose to ignore and never address those concerns. However, according to the explicit provision of the Slovenian Constitution (Article 156), any trial judge who encounters a law that is likely unconstitutional has an express duty to temporarily discontinue the trial and send the issue to the Constitutional Court. The trial judge can continue with the trial only after, and in accordance with, the Constitutional Court’s ruling on the issue. Whoever chooses to ignore such an explicit provision of the Constitution chooses to act in direct contradiction to the law. Willingly or not, one gives the impression that one is led by something outside of law, something that is arbitrary.   Fourthly, an equally fatal stain on the legality of the case is also the issue concerning the inadmissibility of »evidence« acquired abroad in a way that directly violates the requirements of the Slovenian Constitution because representing violations of human rights. Is it necessary for the legality of the process that such »evidence« be excluded as inadmissible? Whoever chooses to ignore such a preeminent constitutional dilemma (the clash of two or three distinct constitutions) in such a delicate case (trial against an opposition leader), and does not temporarily adjourn the trial for sending the issue to the Constitutional Court (the explicit requirement of Article 156 of the Constitution), truly does appear to act according to something outside of law. The case against Janez Janša is legally destroyed. It has an irremovable stain of arbitrariness. Whatever comes out of such a process is not law. The main victims of such an approach to – disregard of – law are primarily we the citizens who will come closer neither to justice nor truth, whatever those might be in this case. Legal institutions are supposed to exist in order to act according to law, and law alone. This is the only way in which they could be delivering us justice and truth. Those will not follow from the process as ruined as this one. The prosecution and trial against Janez Janša are a legal scandal of the highest rank.   Klemen Jaklic, LL.B. (Ljubljana), LL.M. (Harvard), D.Phil. (Oxford), S.J.D. (Harvard)   Published in Delo, Ljubljana, June 2013.   Klemen Jaklic has been teaching at Harvard University in the field of human rights, European integration, constitutional theory, and ethics, in various roles (Teaching Fellow, Head Teaching Fellow, and Lecturer on Law) since 2008. In the spring semester 2013 he is also a Visiting Lecturer at the Faculty of Law, University of Ljubljana. He is the author of “European Constitutional Pluralism: A Novel and Superior Branch of Constitutional Thought?” (Oxford University Press, forthcoming 2013)

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25.04.2017

Poglobljen intervju dr. Damirja Črnčeca, predsednika Odbora 2014

Objavljeno 31. 8. 2014 ob 20:30 Predsednik Odbora 2014, dr. Damir Črnčec, je za tiskano obliko tednika Reporter opravil poglobljen intervju, v katerem je izpostavil nadaljnje načrte pri izvajanju aktivnosti Odbora 2014. Poudaril je, da se aktivnosti Odbora s prekinitvijo zaporne kazni za Janeza Janšo, žrtev politično montiranega procesa, ne bodo končale vse dokler ne bo v Sloveniji vzpostavljena vladavina prava za prav vse državljane. Vzpostavitev javnega prenašanja sojenj pa predstavlja enega izmed končnih ciljev delovanja Odbora 2014. Črnčec je strogo obsodil besede dr. Dragana Petrovca, ki je množico, ki vsakodnevno protestira  pred sodiščem, označil kot drhal. Odbor se je na besede odzval z mešanimi občutki, saj je težko razumeti kako lahko doktor s takšno besedo označi množico, ki vsakodnevno izraža nestrinjanje z delovanjem sodstva na Slovenskem, kar pa konec koncev predstavlja izražanje ustavne pravice. Zaradi škandalozne narave izjave, se je Odbor odločil ukrepati in pozvati državne organe k ukrepanju v skladu s pristojnostmi, prav tako je tudi naslovil vprašanje na Varuhinjo človekovih pravic in RTV SLO na tematiko širjenja sovražnega govora. Poudaril je, da je nujno zavedanje, da je RTV SLO javni zavod, ki je financiran s strani davkoplačevalcev, torej vseh nas in zato nikakor pod nobenimi pogoji ne bi smel sodelovati pri širjenju sovražnega govora. Zavlačevanje s strani sodnice poročevalke Vesne Žalik, ki že več kot dva meseca ni predlagala odločanja o zadevi, za katero bi potrebovala zgolj en dan, je Črnčec komentiral kot »igro sprenevedanja, tiščanja glave v pesek in kar je najhujše neodločanja na Vrhovnem sodišču.« Na očitke, da Odbor s svojo kritiko sodne veje oblasti, ruši pravno državo, Črnčec odgovarja, da imamo državljani vso pravico kritizirati sodno vejo oblasti in od nje zahtevati odgovornost. Evropsko sodišče za človekove pravice nalaga, da ni možno kritizirati zgolj izvršilne in sodne veje oblasti, ampak tudi sodno vejo oblasti, prav tako pa je potrebno zavedanje, da so sodniki tisti, ki se ponašajo s trajnimi mandati in morajo biti zato toliko bolj odgovorni. Ni zanemarljivo dejstvo, da je na podlagi raziskave dr. Lovra Šturma, s Sloveniji kar 442 konkretnih primerov kršenja človekovih pravic in temeljnih svoboščin, na podlagi podatkov Evropskega sodišča za človekove pravice, so slovenska sodišča ravnala napačno v kar 300 primerih. V letnem poročilu Varuhinje človekovih pravic je tudi razvidno, da narašča število državljanov, ki menijo, da so jim bile v sodnih postopkih kršene človekove pravice, v kar 7,4 % primerov se pritožbe smatrajo kot popolnoma upravičene. Prav statistika je tista, ki govori sama po sebi in zato se Odbor 2014 pri svojem vsakodnevnem delovanju ne bo pustil ustrahovati za nobeno ceno. Krivična sodba Janeza Janše, ki je bil zaprt zgolj na podlagi indicev, predstavlja vrh ledene gore, zato se je Odbor 2014 odločil, da se bo loteval tudi ostalih primerov, v katerih so bile kršene človekove pravice in temeljne svoboščine navadnih državljank in državljanov. Z namenom, da Odbor 2014 čimprej ugotovi imena in priimke sodnikov, je le ta zanje pozval predsednico Slovenskega sodniškega društva, poslana pa je bila tudi zahteva za dostop do informacij javnega značaja. Branko Masleša, predsednik Vrhovnega sodišča, je v odgovoru na pismo, omenil, da je pri vprašanjih na področju pravosodja, med drugim potreben tudi dialog s civilno družbo. Črnčec njegovo pripravljenost pozdravlja, saj le ta omogoča dobro podlago za razpravo v širši javnosti. V Odboru 2014 aktivno delujejo tudi nekdanji člani Odbora za varstvo človekovih pravic iz leta 1988, med katerimi je Črnčec izpostavil napore: Alenke Puhar, Davida Tasića in Draga Demšarja, ki si nikakor niso mislili, da se bodo morali tudi v 21. stoletju boriti za varstvo človekovih pravic in temeljnih svoboščin (celoten seznam članov kolegija Odbora 2014 je dostopen na naslednji povezavi: http://odbor2014.si/o-nas/ ). Dr. Črnčec je aktivnosti Odbora 2014 primerjal z rastjo stalagmitov, »vodne kapljice so nam s svojo vztrajnostjo in osredotočenostjo, kapljica na kapljico, omogočile, da danes lahko občudujemo rezultate te vztrajnosti.« Napovedal je, da se zaveda, da bo pot do želenih ciljev dolga in obljubil, da bo Odbor 2014 nadaljeval z aktivnostmi vse dokler v Sloveniji ne bo vladala vladavina prava. V svojem intervjuju je Damir Črnčec poudaril, da zavrača vsakršne očitke, da naj bi Odbor 2014 predstavljal podaljšek stranke SDS. To trditev jasno dokazujejo začrtani cilji delovanja in ljudje, ki aktivno sodelujejo, pri boju za pravno in demokratično Slovenijo. Naši sodelavci so pripadniki različnih društev, organizacij in strank, ki jim spoštovanje človekovih pravic predstavlja prioritetni temelj delovanja pravne države. Midva z Alešem sva med najbolj izpostavljenimi, zaradi česar sva deležna tudi številnih diskreditacij, »borci za človekove pravice in temeljne svoboščine očitno predstavljajo samoumevno tarčo«. Kljub temu bova z Alešem nadaljevala z aktivnostmi, saj se kot državljana zavedava državljanskih pravic, med katerimi je tudi svoboda govora in združevanja. Med drugim se bo Odbor prioritetno zavzemal za transparentnost sojenja, kar bo omogočilo, da bo javnost v sodbah v imenu ljudstva seznanjena z glasovanjem posameznih sodnikov, ki sodijo v sodniških senatih. Povzeto po tedniku Reporter

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25.04.2017

David Tasić: Demokracija na preizkušnji

Objavljeno 8. 8. 2014 ob 10:25 V nadaljevanju si lahko preberete govor Davida Tasića, ki je bil 5. avgusta 2014 predstavljen Varuhinji človekovih pravic Vlasti Nussdorfer. Vljudno vabljeni k branju! Že 27 let je minilo od znamenitih zgodovinskih dogodkov na Roški, ki so pomenili radikalen preobrat v dotedanjem pojmovanju človekovih pravic v nekdanji socialistični Jugoslaviji. Mineva že 24 let od kar imamo novo državo, ki je v svojo Ustavo zapisala varovaje človekovih pravic kot eno izmed najvišjih vrednot slovenske družbe. Tudi Vaša funkcija Varuha človekovih pravic v Republiki Sloveniji govori o tem, da smo človekove pravice v pravni teoriji postavili zelo visoko in da smo želeli zgraditi družbo z visokimi standardi na tem področju. Žal, v praksi se je v obdobju teh poosamosvojitvenih 24-ih letih, dogajalo in se še naprej dogaja marsikaj, kar je v popolnem nasprotju s tistim, kar je zapisano v slovenski Ustavi. Prvič. V vseh teh letih nismo opravili svoje civilizacijske dolžnosti in dostojno pokopali mrtvih iz bratomorne vojne, slovensko pravosodje pa je padlo na izpitu in ni procesiralo nobenega od zločincev zaslužnih za genocidna dejanja nad lastnim narodom v času vojne in po njej. Drugič. Skoraj dvajset let se nihče v tej državi ni resno zanimal za usodo tisoče izbrisanih sodržavljanov, ki so ostali brez osnovnih človekovih pravic in dostojanstva. Politika se je z njimi ukvarjala šele ko je to postalo politično donosno in oportuno, in šele evropsko pravosodje je opozorilo na prave razsežnosti problema. Naše pravosodje pa je tukaj zopet padlo na izpitu pravne zaščite državljanov, in če hočete, na izpitu človečnosti. Tretjič. V kako globoki moralni krizi tiči naša družba, se je pokazalo tudi v prvih letih po izbruhu ekonomske krize, ko so na cesti brez plačila ostali domači in tuji delavci. Verjetno se še spomnite žalostnih prizorov obubožanih in ponižanih delavcev, ki so k nam prišli z velikim upanjem, a smo jih iz države odpravili kot nekaj nepotrebnega, čeprav so z nami in za nas gradili infrastrukturo, ki jo je Slovenija v letih konjukture potrebovala. Naša država je s svojimi nadzornimi funkcijami tukaj povsem odpovedala, in s človekovimi pravicami smo bili zopet na psu. Četrtič. Zadnji dogodki v zvezi s sojenjem v zadevi Patria pa že pomenijo rušenje stavbe na katerih slonijo človekove pravice in načenjajo same temelje demokracije. Imam vtis, ki ga delim s stotisočimi državljani naše dežele, da slovensko pravosodje zopet sodi po političnem prepričanju, in ne po zakonih, ki bi morali biti za vse državljane enaki. Obstajajo resni indici, da slovensko pravosodje sodi Janezu Janši in ostalim v zadevi Patria celo po nareku vplivnih struktur iz bivšega totalitarnega režima in da imamo v Sloveniji opraviti z montiranim političnim procesom. Janši, daleč najvplivnejšemu liderju opozicije, slovensko pravosodje sodi iz prepričanja, da je moteč in destruktiven dejavnik v slovenski politiki, ki ga je treba s politične scene odstraniti z vsemi sredstvi, tudi s pomočjo indicev in brez vsakršnih dokazov. Seveda, o Janezu Janši, politiku in vodji opozicije, lahko mislite in pišete vse kar želite, če le ni osebno žaljivo, saj je svoboda govora tudi bistvo demokracije. Toda ne morete Janezu Janši soditi in ga obsoditi brez dokazov, ne morete ga odstraniti s politične scene na ta način, ker ta način političnega obračunavanja najeda same temelje demokracije, za katero se zavzemam že vse svoje življenje. Zato je ta proces točka preloma, lakmusov papir, test demokratične zrelosti naše družbe, križišče, ki bo pokazalo koliko resno mislimo z demokracijo, človekovimi pravicami in evropskimi civilizacijskimi vrednotami. To je križišče, ki bo pokazalo v kakšno smer bo šla naša družba v bodočnosti. Zato tega trenutka ne kaže zamuditi, draga Vlasta, Varuhinja človekovih pravic-zato se je treba oglasiti, ker to je ne samo vaša profesionalna potreba, temveč tudi vaša državljanska dolžnost. Sam sem 24 let samo opazoval destruktivne pojave v naši družbi, tiho in molče trpel ob slikah in glasovih ponižanih državljanov, gradil svoje stališče do slovenske politike in slovenske novejše zgodovine, zdaj, ko so na preizkusu temelji naše demokracije, temelji politične svobode in temelji človekovih pravic ne morem biti tiho in samo opazovati. Zdaj je treba vstati in reči to ni prav, tako se ne sodi, tako se ne gradi družba prihodnosti. Pridite, Varuhinja človekovih pravic, pridite kdaj pred sodišče in se vprašajte zakaj vsak tretji državljan Slovenije ne verjame, da je sojenje Janši pravično, tretjina pa o tem nima stališča. Vprašajte se, zakaj dan za dnem, po vročini in dežju, vztraja na stotine državljanov v veri, da sojenje Janezu Janši in ostalim v aferi Patria ni bilo pravično. Pridite in spregovorite tem ljudem, ki predstavljajo lučke demokracije. Ne dovolite, da te lučke ugasnejo, ker bo s tem ugasnila tudi naša demokracija. David Tasić, 5. 8. 2014

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25.04.2017

Intervju dr. Damirja Črnčeca, predsednika Odbora 2014

Objavljeno 31. 7. 2014 ob 19:15 Predsednik Odbora 2014, dr. Damir Črnčec, je za tiskano obliko tednika Demokracije opravil intervju, ki je bil danes tudi objavljen v spletni obliki. Damir Črnčec je docent za obrambni in varnostni sistem na Fakulteti za državne in evropske študije. Na Šoli za častnike je nosilec predmeta vojaška obveščevalna dejavnost, na generalštabnem šolanju pa predmeta nacionalna in mednarodna varnost. Doktoriral je iz politoloških znanosti na Fakulteti za družbene vede Univerze v Ljubljani. Udeležil se je številnih strokovnih usposabljanjih doma in v tujini, vključno z usposabljanjem s področja mednarodne in nacionalne varnosti v George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies in na Univerzi Harvard. Prav tako je tudi avtor in soavtor številnih strokovnih in znanstvenih člankov in znanstvenih monografij. Črnčec je bil generalni direktor Obveščevalno-varnostne službe Ministrstva za obrambo ter direktor Slovenske obveščevalno-varnostne agencije med letoma 2012 in 2013. Je tudi predsednik Društva Evropska Slovenija in Odbora za človekove pravice in temeljne svoboščine - Odbor 2014. V poglobljenem intervjuju je izpostavil vzroke za nastanek Odbora 2014 in utemeljil njegovo poslanstvo ter izpostavil dejstvo, da postane vsakdo, ki si drzne s kritično distanco ocenjevati delo sodišč, nemudoma tarča mainstream medijev, zasmehujejo ga in razglasijo celo za sovražnika. Trenutno stanje pravne države po mnenju Črnčeca kaže na storjen genocid nad pravom. Odbor 2014 je izključno civilnodružbeno gibanje vseh, ki se zavzemajo za spoštovanje človekovih pravic in zato ni prav, da ga lepijo k stranki SDS. Prav tako kot Črnčec tudi številni člani kolegija Odbora niso člani nobene stranke. Celo nasprotno, gospod Aleš Primc je član SLS, na naših shodih sta do pravosodja kritična tako podpredsednik NSi Aleš Hojs kot nekdanja ministrica NSi Mojca Kucler Dolinar. Vse aktivnosti Odbora so financirane iz lastnih sredstev in z donacijami tistih, ki želijo temu teptanju človekovih pravic narediti konec. Ustanovitev Odbora 2014 je bila tako nuja, saj je v zadnjih desetih letih, po podatkih Ustavnega sodišča, v kar 422 primerih prišlo do kršitev človekovih pravic. Zelo je alarmen tudi podatek, da več kot milijon in pol državljanov ne zaupa slovenskemu pravosodju, k temu prispeva tudi dejstvo, da imajo sodniki trajen mandat in so torej praktično nedosegljivi, zato je potrebno sodbe, v primerih, ko je to primerno, tudi javno kritizirati. Črnčec je med drugim poudaril, da morajo biti sodniki odgovorni nam, davkoplačevalcem in vsem državljanom Republike Slovenije.   Črnčec se je v intervjuju tudi dotaknil stanja, ki vlada v slovenskem medijskem prostoru. Ne zdi se mu prav, da se je kljub vsakodnevnim aktivnostim Odbora 2014, potrebno boriti za medijsko pozornost. Nikakor ne gre zanemariti dejstva, da tudi tuji mediji zaznavajo trenutno situacijo v naši domovini in zaskrbljeno opazujejo odvijanje dogodkov v državi, ki je včasih veljala za vzor uspešno gospodarsko razvite države.   Nekaj odzivov tujih medijev lahko preberete na naslednjih povezavah: (http://odbor2014.si/novice/105-politicni-zapornik-v-eu/ , http://odbor2014.si/novice/87-hans-winkler--gefangnis-als-mittel-im-wahlkampf/ , http://odbor2014.si/novice/81-fpo-kitzmullerjeva-zahteva-revidiranje-sodbe-proti-slovenskemu-opozicijskemu-politiku-jansi--in--v-ozadju-sumi-blizajoce-se-parlamentarne-volitve/ ).   Povzeto po Demokracija.si Celoten intervju z dr. Damirjem Črnčecem je dostopen na naslednji povezavi:http://demokracija.si/v-fokusu/slovenija/31162-rnec-slovenska-demokracija-je-nepopolna-zaradi-invalidne-tretje-veje-oblasti

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25.04.2017

Video in audio vsebine

Shod za svobodo in pravičnost pred VS, 10.11.2016

Shod za svobodo in pravičnost pred VS, 8.12.2016

Aleš Primc ob začetku zbiranja podpisov za javnost, ...

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