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03 October 2008

Legal Reports National Media 2 -3 October 2008

Note: This post also includes legal reports from 24 september 2008 and 25 September 2008

HEADLINES

Public Prosecution to make accusation after statement from Brigadier Ruak

I'm not afraid of justice because truth is on my side, says Falur

Court sentences Eugenio to four years in prison

FRETILIN demands documents of Parliament car purchase

Govt sends new military law to National Parliament

Prove me you're professional and I'm ready send the FSI and UNPOL back, says PM

PNTL officers should avoid personal interest, says de Jesus

Parliament calls for people to not panic

The country is on the verge of dictatorship, says FRETILIN
AusAID provides US $ 500,000 to ICFJ for media support

Government begins processing payment for PNTL officers, says State Security Secretary

Corruption in Timor-Leste has been very critical, says Transparency International

Ballistic examination proves bullets from rebel group hit Horta

I won't evade justice, says Lere Annan Timur

Investigation by the UN over 4 December 2002 case is political trick

Public Prosecution has obligation to issue notification, says PD MP

FULL STORIES


Public Prosecution to make accusation after statement from Brigadier Ruak - Televizaun Timor-Leste 2 October 2008
Prosecutor General Longuinhos Monteiro said the case of the country's crises of 2006 would be taken to court after the Public Prosecution had obtained a statement from the Defence Force Commander, Brigadier General Taur Matan Ruak.

The prosecutor general said they would make an official request to the Defence Superior Council to allow Brigadier Ruak to give his statement over the case.

'This is preliminary process and is not the time for making accusations; the final decision will be taken after we get a statement from Brigadier Ruak,' Monteiro said.

In response to the F-FDTL Chief of Staff, Lere Anan Timur's concerns about the enquiry questioning high ranking defence force personnel such as himself, Monteiro recognized it.

Monteiro said the inquiry should actually be done by a prosecutor, yet he was sick and that they handed it over to the investigative police to do it. He added the president and prime minister had also faced inquiry in relation to the recent crises of 2006.

Image: Chief of the Falintil-East Timor National Defence Force, Brigadier General Taur Matan Ruak. The United Nations Commission of Inquiry for East Timor recommended that he be prosecuted for his involvement of the illegal transfer of weapons during the 2006 Crisis. He is yet to face court .

I'm not afraid of justice because truth is on my side, says Falur - Televizaun Timor-Leste 2 October 2008
East Timor Defense Force Lieutenant Colonel Falur Rate Laek said Thursday (2/10) that he is not afraid of facing justice because the truth is on his side.

Falur made the statement after answering the questions from the office of the Pubic Prosecution in relation to the 2006 crises in which he is alleged to have handed over weapons to former combatants.

'Only those who are afraid of facing justice are those who are guilty and those who are brave to face justice are those who have truth,' said Falur. He said that that as he fought for independence and democracy, he himself should uphold justice and therefore he is ready to cooperate with the justice system.

He explained that he was happy with the questions asked because as a combatant he is always happy.

Two more F-FDTL officers would be questioned in relation to the handing over weapons to former combatants in the 2006 crises.

Court sentences Eugenio to four years in prison - Televizaun Timor-Leste 3 October 2008
The Dili district court has announced the verdict and sentenced Eugenio Candido Alves to four years in prison, because he was found guilty of being involved in the arson attack on the Custom Department's former building on 6 August 2007.

The court reached the verdict based on the Penal Code Article 170 and 180 about committing arson of public buildings and disturbances.

The trial for this case was conducted by Deputy Penal judge consisting of Maria das Dores, with Prosecutor Felisberto Cardoso and Public Defender Augusto do Santos Marques.

Prosecutor Cardoso said he made the accusation to the five accused as they were suspected of being involved in burning down the Customs Office building 2007, but the four other accused were released as they were not found guilty.

Meanwhile, Legal Advisor for Eugenio said the verdict was acceptable to him and had discussed about everything related to the verdict with the family of Eugenio.

FRETILIN demands documents of Parliament car purchase - Suara Timor Lorosae 3 October 2008
Opposition party in the National Parliament, FRETILIN, demanded documents and other paper-work related to the 65 cars purchased for the National Parliament.

The demand was made by MP Francisco Branco Miranda during a Parliament's plenary session Tuesday (30/9). Branco argued that the money used to buy the cars belongs to the people and therefore the process of the purchase has to be transparent to the people. He said that the process of buying the cars is not transparent amongst the members of the National Parliament.

Vice President of the National Parliament Maria Paixao said that though National Parliament is an autonomous state institution, it is not yet financially autonomous. She therefore asked the opposition party to seek the documents from the government.

Meanwhile, head of National Procurement Office, Francisco da Costa Soares Borulako, said that the documents could be given to anyone only if there is decision from the Prime Minister and Minister of Finance to do so.

Govt sends new military law to National Parliament - Suara Timor Lorosae 3 October 2008
The government had sent a new law on military service to the National Parliament to be discussed and then approved.

And the proposed law has been further submitted to the President of Committee B dealing with the issues of Foreign Affairs, National Defence and Security by the second Vise President Maria Paixao.

President of the Committee, Duarte Nunes, said that the law will be discussed in Committee before taking it to the plenary of the National Parliament to vote on.

Secretary of State for Security, Julio Tomas Pinto, said that if the law is passed as soon as possible, the Ministry would start recruiting new officials for the Defence Force in this month.

Prove to me you're professional and I'm ready send the FSI and UNPOL back, says PM - Suara Timor Lorosae 3 October 2008
East Timor's Prime Minister Xanana Gusmao said Tuesday (30/9)that if the East Timor Defence Force (F-FDTL) and the National Police (PNTL) proved to him that they are already professional, then the Prime Minister could ask the International Stabilization Forces (ISF) and the United Nations Police (UNPOL) to leave the country.

'The problems become smaller with the presence of the international forces and we feel we could not move if there are police from all over the world present here so prove me (you are professional) and I can send them back,' said Gusmao.

He explained that East Timor is an independent country but the movement of its Defence Force and its National Police is limited while the Australian soldiers are walking around carrying their weapons. 'You cannot do it (carrying weapons around) while malaes (foreigners) can; what kind of independence is this?' questioned Gusmao.

He explained that in order to be really professional, the police should not carry their weapons while going to discotheques and police agents should not tobe involved in illegal gambling.

As the Minister for Defence and Security, Gusmao asked the officers of both F-FDTL and PNTL to keep the spirit of joint operation to show that they are ready to take responsibility of securing and defending the sovereignty of Timor-Leste.

PNTL officers should avoid personal interest, says de Jesus - Timor Post 3 October 2008
Timorese Acting Police Commander, Afonso De Jesus, has called on all Timorese National Police (PNTL) officers to work well in serving the country's people and not prioritise personal interest.

The commander made the comments on Tuesday (30/9) in connection with some of the police inspectors who had worked for personal interest. 'I am calling on all the police officers within the police force to work together and keep up with the spirit of nationalism. We cannot work alone within this institution,' De Jesus said.

De Jesus said the police force needed help from the country's leaders to professionalize the country's police officers. He added that the police institution needed to make changes, because some of the police officers were still new and their mentality was not so good.

Parliament calls for people to not panic - Timor Post 3 October 2008
Parliamentary Committee B has called for the Timorese people to not panic with illegal pamphlets which are currently spreading within the community regarding the appointment of the country’s new general police commander.

President of Parliamentary Committee B for National Security and Defence, Duarte Nunes, said the Parliament and Government knew about the distribution of the pamphlets observing, therefore, tht the people should not panic, but should remain calm. Nunes said the pamphlets were distributed by the irresponsible people to provoke instability in the country and make the people panic. The pamphlets said if the Government tries to appoint a candidate from the country's east as Commander then that would cause instability to emerge within the country.

He added the Government had planned to appoint a new top police commander in November.

Image: The National Parliament Chambers in Dili


The country is on the verge of dictatorship, says FRETILIN - Televizaun Timor-Leste 2 October 2008
FRETILIN’s President Francisco Guterres Lu Olo said Thursday that East Timor is on the verge of dictatorship because there is tendency in the current government led by Xanana Gusmao to kill the rights of the people.

The statement was made during a press conference in relation to the statement made by the Prime Minister Xanana Gusmao last Saturday in Ainaro where Gusmao threatened the people not to take part in the peace rally organized by FRETILIN.

He stressed that the party will not allow dictatorship to take place again in the country as the people fought hard to get rid off it during the illegal Indonesian occupation.

Lu Olo added FRETILIN is really concerned and saddened by the statement made by Gusmao and he urged Gusmao's government to respect the Constitution of the Republic along with other existing applicable laws and to respect the rights of the people to stage a peaceful rally.

He explained that the country should be built on the spirit of democracy, tolerance and peace but not on dictatorship. He reaffirmed that the FRETILIN's peace rally is not to create conflict but to affirm democracy and justice in the country and therefore it should not be banned by the government.

The date for the peace rally is not yet known.

Image: Francisco 'Lu Olo' Guterres, President of the Revolutionary Front for an Independent East Timor (Fretilin)

AusAID provides US$500,000 to ICFJ for media support - Televizaun Timor-Leste 25 September 2008
The Australian International Development Agency (AusAID) has provided US$500, 000 to help support a free and independent media in Timor-Leste through the International Centre for Journalists known as ICFJ.

The funds were directly handed over by the AusAID Acting councilor, Jenny Drain, and representative, Mark White, to ICFJ Director, Dave Blues, yesterday.

Drain said the project would be implemented until 2011 and would be specifically strengthening the media program in Timor-Leste, as media playedan important role in the country's development.

'The media sector should be credible in building a strong democracy in East Timor and this why we continue supporting professional and qualified media training and the development of journalism in this country.'

Government begins processing payment for PNTL officers, says State Security Secretary - Televizaun Timor-Leste 25 September
The Government, through State Secretary for Security, has begun processing per diem payments for the Timorese National Police (PNTL) officers who were involved in the Joint Operation during the manhunt for the rebels.

'The payment of the per diems is currently in process in the Ministry of Planning and Finance,' State Secretary for Security, Francisco Guterres said. The state secretary said about $US500, 000.000 was enough to pay those police officers who had not been paid yet.

He added such a mount of money would be directly allocated to PNTL once it had been approved and would mainly be allocated to the police officers who were involved in the recent Joint Operation.

Image: East Timor National Police in action in Dili


Corruption in Timor-Leste has been very critical, says Transparency International - Timor Post 25 September 2008
Corruption in Timor-Leste has been significantly increasing compared with the level of corruption that took place last year, says a report byTransparency International released Wednesday (24/9).

According to Transparency International, which conducted corruption analyses in 180 countries in the world, the corruption cases which were high during the year of 2007 and 2008 had put Timor-Leste in the list of the one of the most corrupt countries in the world.

Last year, Timor-Leste was ranked 123 in the list of the corrupt countries with 2.6 points, while this year it drops to 145 with 2.2 points.

Learning about the corruption situation in the country, MP Fernanda Borges, President of Committee A, said that she was terribly saddened by the level of corruption in the country.

"I am terribly sad by the fact that Timor-Leste drops to the position of 145 from 123. Meaning that the corruption has been very strong in Timor-Leste," said Borges. Borges said that corruption takes place in the forms of single source mechanism and that the procurement services are not transparent.

The Transparency International elicited the data on corruption from the public sector and commerce, ranking the least corrupt countries with position one while the most corrupt counties with 180.

Image: MP Fernandes Borges

Ballistic examination proves bullets from rebel group hit Horta - Timor Post 24 September 2008
East Timor's Prosecutor General Longuinhos Monteiro affirmed Wednesday (24/9) that based on the ballistic examination done by the Australian Federal Police it was the bullets of the rebel group led by Alfredo Reinado Alves that injured Ramos Horta during the attempt of February 11.

He said that the examination process had been successful though he declined to reveal the identity of the individuals who shot Horta.

He explained that only up to three automatic weapons were used for the examination in order to strengthen the accusation of the office of the Prosecutor General.

He said the result of the ballistic examination will be made public after his meeting with the Commissioner of the Australian Federal Police Thursday (25/9).

I won't evade justice, says Lere Annan Timur - Diario Nacional 25 September 2008
The Timorese Defense Force Chief of Staff, Lere Annan Timur, said he would not stay away from process of justice based on the notification issued by the Public Prosecution regarding the recent crises of the country.

'This is not a new thing for me and other friends who have got the notification. I had never retreated from the war and even for justice I will not be shocked and this is my commitment. We will cooperate with the Court to create peace and stability in the country,' Lere Annan said.

Lere Annan called on the Court to explain to him about the reason why the Public Prosecution wanted to summon them.

Investigation by the UN over 4 December 2002 case is political trick – Diario Nacional 25 September 2008
Fretilin MPs said the investigation into the case of 4 December 2002 by the UN International Investigation Commission was like a political trick.

Fretilin Chief of Bench, Francisco Miranda Branco, said the findings of the UN investigation was excessive and was political trick. Branco was referring to the UN investigative commission report which had been publicized by the media and was raised by MPs in recent days.

Branco said one of the report findings said a former state secretary of Fretilin government provoked the protestors to attack the Parliament House on 4 December 2002.

Public Prosecution has obligation to issue notification, says Democratic Party MP - Radio Timor-Leste 24 September 2008
Democratic Party (PD) MP Vital dos Santos said the Public Prosecution had the obligation to issue a notification for any of the country's citizen who was suspected of being involved in criminal actions.

Dos Santos was referring to the notification issued by the Public Prosecution to summon Timorese Defense Force (F-FDTL) Chief of Staff Lere Annan Timur and Falur Rate Laek regarding the country’s recent military and political crises of 2006.

Dos Santos stressed the Public Prosecution had the right to halt process of investigation into a case if there were no strong evidences.

Lere Annan will face inquiry on the upcoming 29 September while Falur Rate Laek will face inquiry on 1 October.

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