Komandanti i Gardës së Republikës në Gjykatën e Tiranës
By: Leonard Bakillari
A month after the Tirana Court acquitted two officials of the Guard of the Republic accused of murder during the demonstration of “January 21”, the file was forwarded to the Court of Criminal Appeals in Tirana. The prosecution appealed the decision of acquittal of former Guard commander Major Ndrea Prendi and Agim Llupo accused of three murders in the demonstration of 21 January 2011.
The prosecution says that the Court of First Instance has misinterpreted the law when it declared the officials of the Guard of Republic innocent and therefore, the Court of Appeal must now consider the case.
After submitting the appeal by the prosecution, this Thursday, in the Court of Appeal was cast lots for selection of three judges who will judge both defendants of January 21, Ndrea Prendi and Agim Llupo. Both defendants go to appeal with a compelling defense of the first degree, which does not deny committing the murders, but attempts to explain that Llupo and Prendi had no reason to shoot on demonstrators.
According to the electronic draw held on midday Thursday, judge Astrit Haxhialushi will chair the panel. Judge Haxhialushi has a long career in the judiciary. For some time, the judge Haxhialushi also holds position as a member of the High Council of Justice, which was elected by a majority of his fellow judges.
He is decreed as a judge in the Court of Appeals in Tirana in May 2010 by former President Topi, after some years as a judge in the Court of Kavaja.
Two other judges who were selected to be part of the panel of “January 21” are Fatos Qato and Tom Ndreca.
Ndreca has been part of the Electoral College in the general elections of 2009 and Local 2011, where has been criticized by the opposition about how he resolved claims of irregularities in the electoral process.
At the time, the opposition claimed that Judge Tom Ndreca had supported the government in reviewing appeals of decisions of the Central Election Commission. Tom Ndrenca has been part of some judicial bodies in the Electoral College, which has examined complaints concerning Socialist Party decisions deemed unfair by the complainant.
According to the opposition, judge Ndreca has rejected all applications submitted to the Electoral College from the Socialist Party. In the 2011 local elections, Tirana municipality was won by the Democratic candidate, Basha who faced the SP leader Edi Rama.
Facsimile of the Prosecution’s appeal filed in the Court of Appeals for the “21 January” case.
On 7 February this year, a panel headed by judge Besnik Hoxha acquitted two officers of the Guard of the Republic, although prosecution accuses them of murder.
The court acknowledged that at least two demonstrators were shot by weapons used by Guard Commander Ndrea Prendi and head of the special unit Agim Llupo, but said that the prosecution had not presented evidence to prove that they were deliberately shot.
On the appeal that the prosecution made to this decision, argued that the court acted “in complete contradiction with the evidence presented by the prosecution during the trial, referring to non-existent facts and evidence.”
According to the prosecution, “the court exceeded its powers under the law of criminal-procedural assessment of the evidence, by declaring both Ndrea Prendi and Agim Llupo innocent “. Prosecution seeks to change the decision of the Court of Tirana criminal by declaring them guilty for crimes they are accused.
Translated by: Kristi Gadeshi
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