Wednesday, 19 December 2018 | News today: 16

Delaying tactics by courts and prosecutors prevented Gruevski from using all available legal options, says Alfa TV

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One of the numerous violations of the rule of law in the trials against Nikola Gruevski is the manner in which the courts handled the appeal which Gruevskiput forward.

For two weeks the Basic Court Skopje I (the Criminal Court) postponed the forwarding of this appeal to the Appeals Court and then, possibly to the Supreme Court. Alfa TV asked the court why is this appeal being slow-walked and the answer was that it is still being processed, without taking into account the fact that the defendant is facing arrest and wants to use all available legal remedies before that happens.

An opinion on this appeal is also required from the Special Prosecutor’s Office, which has a two weeks deadline to provide one, but there are no penalties provided if they fail to do so in time. This is another delay in the process, which obstructed the right of Gruevski to plead his case before the Supreme Court. Alfa TV reminds that in the corruption trial of former Prime Minister and SDSM leader Vlado Buckovski, he had a chance to successfully take his case to the Supreme Court, including with regard to the arrest order.

Alfa TV also examined the experience which this leadership in the Macedonian judiciary, and especially the Special Prosecutor’s Office (SPO), have with defendants seeking asylum. Before Gruevski requested asylum in Hungary, two high ranked police officers who were charged by the SPO, Goran Grujevski and Nikola Boskovski, requested asylum in Greece. The Greek courts found that the two can’t be extradited back to Macedonia because they, like Gruevski, were once already pardoned for the charges initiated by the SPO, and a Presidential pardon can’t be revoked or ignored.