Office of Prosecutor General going ahead with Savisaar appeal ({{commentsTotal}})

Chief Prosecutor Steven-Hristo Evestus
Chief Prosecutor Steven-Hristo Evestus Source: Siim Lõvi /ERR

The Office of the Prosecutor General in Estonia has confirmed it is contesting the decision made by Harju County Court to terminate proceedings in the trail of former Tallinn Mayor Edgar Savisaar.

Mr. Savisaar, who is also a former leader and cofounder of the Centre Party, was standing on corruption charges, but the proceedings were halted permanently early on this month following a series of health problems.

The trial had been running almost a year but had been disrupted due to serious health issues on the part of Mr. Savisaar, and a compromise solution had been found wanting.

Spokespersons for the Office of the Prosecutor General said that the office disagreed with this decision and planned to contest it in the next level of court, the Estonian Circuit Court, as Chief Prosecutor Steven-Hristo Evestus had already stated, as reported by ERR.

There have been precedents in Estonian law where lower court terminations of cases have been contested at the next level.

Survey says yes

The prosecutor's office have argued that two expert surveys have been conducted on Mr. Savisaar over the past year which both state that he was fit to stand trial, lining up against the testimony of just one expert who felt that he was not fit for trial, along with the fact that an ambulance was dispatched to attend to Mr. Savisaar just once during the course of the proceedings.

The Estonian Court system rests on three tiers, the County Court at the first level, then the Circuit Court on the second level followed by the Supreme Court as preeminent court in the land.

Mr. Savisaar, along with several co-defendants including the Centre Party itself, was facing various corruption charges including accepting bribes and money laundering. He had previously had a leg amputated following a streptococcal infection in 2015.

Mr. Savisaar, who is also a former leader and cofounder of the Centre Party, was standing on corruption charges, but the proceedings were halted permanently early on this month following a series of health problems.

The trial had been running almost a year but had been disrupted due to serious health issues on the part of Mr. Savisaar, and a compromise solution had been found wanting.

Factors behind the challenge

Spokespersons for the Office of the Prosecutor General said that the office disagreed with this decision and planned to contest it in the next level of court, the Estonian Circuit Court, as Chief Prosecutor Steven-Hristo Evestus had already stated, as reported by ERR.

There have been precedents in Estonian law where lower court terminations of cases have been contested at the next level.

The prosecutor's office have argued that two expert surveys have been conducted on Mr. Savisaar over the past year which both state that he was fit to stand trial, lining up against the testimony of just one expert who felt that he was not fit for trial, along with the fact that an ambulance was dispatched to attend to Mr. Savisaar just once during the course of the proceedings.

The Estonian Court system rests on three tiers, the County Court at the first level, then the Circuit Court on the second level followed by the Supreme Court as preeminent court in the land.

Mr. Savisaar, along with several co-defendants including the Centre Party itself, was facing various corruption charges including accepting bribes and money laundering. He had previously had a leg amputated following a streptococcal infection in 2015.

Editor: Andrew Whyte

Source: BNS



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