“What happened to common sense?!” I asked myself while sitting in the courtroom of the District Court in Ljubljana and following the trial in the case of the murder of Dr Janko Jamnik, the director of the Slovenian National Institute of Chemistry, witnessing the cruel sentencing of Dr Milko Novič and the murdering of the rule of law.
The publicly read judgement given to Novič, which was pronounced by Darko Majhenič, the director of the National Investigation Bureau (NPU), only six days after the shots at Via Bona, with him listing the so-called “evidence” against Milko Novič, already signalled proceedings that would lack in common sense. First Majhenič provided a motive – malicious revenge for having been sacked. However, he failed to add that this sacking occurred five years ago, that the process had been started at the request of some (!) employees by former director of the Institute of Chemistry Peter Venturini, and that Jamnik merely finished this process. Jamnik had not been in any personal conflict with Novič. All witnesses (employees) rejected the idea that Novič had ever been physically aggressive. He was also judged to not be physically aggressive by a psychiatrist when the danger of re-offending raised the question of whether his detention can be suspended.
“The defendant is guilty as he had procured a gun”
However, the multitude of investigators that cooperated in the investigation could not determine when, where, or how, and of course the gun has never been found.
“The defendant is guilty as he had come to the scene of the crime”
However, video recordings fail to show him even once – either at the scene of the crime, on the way there, or on the way back home. But the cameras at the scene do show other people. During the trial, these recordings were only shown in December 2015 and never again after that. Why not? What did the judge try to hide when she refused to show concrete video recordings requested by the defence in the later parts of the trial (following year)?
She said: “Don’t worry, we’ll deal with that.” Hello? Did she knowingly and intentionally conceal evidence that exonerates Novič and would have to be the subject of discussion at the court? This is no longer a question of common sense but of a corrupt judge who conceals facts and the truth instead of revealing them. Unfortunately, the attorney Hribernik was absent at the time (illness). I do not know why later the defence did not appeal. The video recordings, when magnified, show how a person, who has been rushing to the adjacent side walk immediately after the incident, is taking clothes off his upper body while being partly concealed behind a metal pillar, after which he is “picked up” by a Fiat Punto. And that it was this car which followed Jamnik in the journey towards Via Bona is shown by a second camera.
“The defendant is guilty as he had known that there would be a party with employees from the Institute of Chemistry there, though this had been known by everyone.”
Question for Majhenič: “Did Novič (and all employees) also know that Jamnik would be 38 minutes late? What if he were 31 minutes late?” (The party started at 19:00.) At 19:31 (Novič’s daughter was leaving the house at the time, having answered the call of a friend), Novič was still on the couch in his pyjamas, resting after a difficult day of work in the Kras. After that he sprung into action according to the NPU, the prosecutor, and the judge. According to the judge, in seven minutes (the shooting happened at 19:38), Novič managed to dress in winter clothes, arm himself, and rush to Via Bona with the bicycle from the locked woodshed (Žaucerjeva ulica). And even though he had to stop at red lights, he supposedly arrived at the right moment – where he hid or discarded the bicycle has not been explained by the judge – managed to focus, calming down from the “vengefulness that was raising his blood pressure and speeding up his heart rate”, and without error performed two practically fatal shots to the head. And no camera ever noticed even the smallest part of him. Was he invisible? Well, he is a chemist, so he took care of this small problem, only forgetting his gloves at home (fatal mistake). Immediately after that, Novič would have had to rush home from the parking lot (this time the camera did not catch him either) since he had to be at home only 10 minutes after the shooting. Why? Because that was when he responded to the first SMS message from the stranger Bartol (sent at 18:42). At the time, at 19:49, Novič was registered by the domestic telephone base station.
Let us ask ourselves: how is it possible that this Bartol sends Novič, a stranger, two messages on the very day of the murder, approximately one hour before and half an hour after the shots at Via Bona? At the trial this person could not remember whether he “fooled around” with the SMS messages (everything points to the other recipients having been fictional) in Ribnica or at the Faculty of Mathematics. But what if he was walking at the time (with a bicycle) between Koprska street (where the private base station Varnost is situated – who might be taking shelter there?) and Via Bona?
Employees of the Slovene Intelligence and Security Agency (SOVA) had been there as well
The second message from Bartol was sent to Novič 30 minutes after the murder, when Jamnik had already been in the hospital for a long time. And it was this premeditated SMS message that was registered by the private station Varnost Varnostni sistemi d.o.o. on Koprska street (near Via Bona). Well, informants could tell you how a signal can be redirected.
However, those planning the murder of Dr Jamnik, who had designated Novič to be their scapegoat, miscalculated. Because only four minutes after receiving the message Novič answered. And which base station registered Novič’s answer at 20:11? The domestic one of course (the base station GSM Ljubljana Vič – GD, which covers the area of his home on Žaucerjeva street) since Novič had been home all evening – on the couch, in his pyjamas. However, that evening employees of SOVA had been spotted in front of Via Bona. What were they doing there?
Judge Špela Koleta has also shown that she either does not have(?) or does not want(?) to use her common sense with the statement: Since in the evening of 16 December 2017 (day of the crime) Novič had not been active on the internet for around three hours, it is proven that he is the murderer. Novič is guilty, period. Judge Koleta also only acknowledges the opinion of one court expert with regards to the GSR particles – Franc Sablič, who has produced his opinion as a private contractor while at the same time being director of the National Forensic Laboratory, which is part of the police, i.e. he was not independent. Coincidence? This expert has simply used a probability factor to prove guilt. But it is interesting that he is not aware of the law of gravity. And while he, an engineer, denies the passive contamination of the fabric with GSR particles, the doctor of chemistry Čeh together with the Jožef Stefan Institute states that micron and smaller particles remain in fabric forever. With regards to Novič’s jacket, he said that it had not been present at Via Bona but that it had been present at the shooting range which Novič had been visiting, and that a passive contamination of the jacket had taken place. The same view is also held by the German expert – who together with her colleague, a ballistics expert, wrote that it is not possible to confirm with certainty that Novič is the murderer. Ester Ceket from the National Forensic Laboratory has failed to convince the judge as well – at the trial she agreed with the German expert. Well, Koleta has made a judgement: because Novič has to be sentenced (that is what the men in the background aka the mafia demand), she can only consider the opinion of the compromised Sablič. What is interesting is that the characteristic particles of sinoxid ammunition (the found cartridge) contain the cumulative composition of only three elements – lead, barium, and antimony. There is no tin, and only the designated expert Sablič “found” GSR particles with four elements – lead, barium, antimony, and tin (Sn) – in the cartridge. Where the tin had come from, he did not explain. These discrepancies have not yet been discussed at the trial [sic!].
Well, the prosecutor said on public television: “The judgement isn’t even final yet.” What did she wish to communicate?
Iva Pavlin Žurman