The European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg found in favor of judge Vladimir Pancevski, who filed a suit after he was suspended as a judge after a lengthy pressure campaign against him.
Pancevski is suing the state for violating his human rights, after the police conducted a raid based on the orders of a court who had no jurisdiction in the area. Now disgraced Special Prosecutor Katica Janeva who wanted Pancevski gone as he stood in the way of her politically motivated cases, turned to a judge in her native town of Gevgelija to approve a warrant to raid Pancevski’s home and office, looking for reasons to have him removed from office. The court in Strasbourg decided that Pancevski’s allegations have merit and the case will advance to the second stage of deliberation.
The other case is initiated after state prosecutors in Macedonia refused his request to investigate the decision by the Gevgelija court to order the raid. ECHR decided in April 2019 that it will investigate these two cases of violations of Pancevski’s human rights, in which the state is violating his right to privacy and is conducting a campaign of politically motivated pressure against him.
And today the court in Strasbourg accepted to rule on the decision of the Judicial Council to have Pancevski suspended as a criminal court judge. This decision of the Council was the culmination of the campaign of political persecution against him, initiated by Katica Janeva and the ruling SDSM party.
Pancevski was head of the criminal court in Skopje, and refused to blindly follow requests from Katica Janeva, who was the most prominent agent of the political persecution against officials of the VMRO-DPMNE party. Most notably, he refused to allow to use of illegally obtained wiretaps as evidence in cases initiated by Janeva. For this, Pancevski was publicly attacked by the SDSM party, whose interests Janeva supported, and was eventually removed from office and dismissed as judge.
Last week Janeva was sentenced to seven years in prison for gross abuse of office and corruption after it was determined that she was initiating criminal charges to blackmail businessmen. Her office was dismantled shortly after her arrest last summer and is now considered a dark stain on the Macedonian judiciary.