From: Exit News
High Court Accepts Request for Retrial by Albanian Ex-Minister Charged with Drug Trafficking

The High Court has accepted the request of Albania’s former minister of interior Saimir Tahiri that his cased be retried by a different panel of the Appeals Court. 

On Tuesday, the court upheld a ruling of the Special Court of Appeals from June 2020, demanding a new trial for Tahiri after it concluded that he was convicted of an offense for which he was not charged.

Tahiri was sentenced to 3 years and 4 months in prison for abuse of office two years ago, in September 2019. The first instance court converted the controversial sentence to three years in probation, and barred him from exercising public office during this time.

Prosecutors had demanded 12 year in prison for Tahiri on charges of “international drug trafficking”, participation in a “structured criminal organization”, and “criminal activity under a structured criminal organization.”

The court dropped all three charges by prosecutors, and sentenced him on a different charge, abuse of office.

The Special Court of Appeals demanded a retrial, arguing that the court of first instance violated the Code of Criminal Procedure by sentencing him on a different charge, on which he was not investigated.

Last year, Tahiri appealed the ruling to the High Court, demanding a retrial by a different panel of judges of the Appeals Court. On the other hand, the Special Prosecution against Organized Crime demanded the High Court to order a retrial at the first instance court.


Read more: Tahiri Verdict Shows a Captured Judiciary Unbothered by Reform