Memorie.al publishes archival documents extracted from a file located in the Central State Archive (fund of the former Central Committee of the ALP), where there is a correspondence between the President of the Supreme Court of the People’s Republic of Albania, Shuaip Panariti , with the Central Committee of the ALP and the Prime Minister, regarding the trial conducted in November-December 1963, against the defendants: Vangjel Lezho, Fadil Kokomani, Robert Vulkani, Trifon Xhagjika, Thoma Rafaeli, Franko Sara and Stavri Rafaeli, all senior graduates in military universities and academies of the Soviet Union and other Eastern European countries, such as artists, engineers, military, journalists, etc. All their activity “anti-party and hostile” according to the information of the Supreme Court, starting from: agitation and propaganda, espionage activity with the Soviet lieutenant Valentin Zhenj during their meetings at the house of Robert Vulkan and the beach of Durres, plan and attempt failed to assassinate Enver Hoxha in the premises of the Leadership Bloc and then the Minister of Interior, Kadri Hazbiu, at the Tirana Maternity Hospital where he often went with the car he drove himself, until the attempt to escape initially from the river Buna and then from Lake Pogradec, etc. The unknown file of the group of liberal communists where four of them would be shot, is published for the first time by Memorie.al.
“Before the Court, the defendants Vangjel Lezho, Fadil Kokomani and the captain, Trifon Xhagjika, stated that in addition to the activity they carried out in connection with foreign intelligence, making preparations to escape and making agitation and propaganda against the popular power, they intended to they also committed an act of terror, in order to make the outside world understand that there are people in Albania who do not agree with the political line followed by the Albanian Labor Party and the government of the Republic of Albania. To achieve this purpose, from the conduct of the trial, it turned out that they made this preparation: At first they planned to commit the act of terror against the party leader, Comrade Enver Hoxha. For this, the defendants Fadil Kokomani, Vangjel Lezho, Trifon Xhagjika claimed that they went near the premises of the Central Committee to see the time of arrival and departure of Comrade Enver from the office. They claimed that they had seen Comrade Enver at what time he went to the office and left the office and in what direction he came to the office and left the office, but they found it difficult to carry out the assassination attempt against his life, because the good defense that was done to him. However, being consistent in their activity, these convicts come to the conclusion that they kill other leaders. Thus, the defendants Fadil Kokomani, Vangjel Lezho and Trifon Xhagjika, admitted before the Court, so it also emerges from the investigation material to kill comrade Kadri Hazbiu and some other employees of the State Security “. This was stated, among other things, in a report-information of the President of the Supreme Court of the People’s Republic of Albania, Shuaip Panariti, sent to the Central Committee of the ALP, regarding the judicial process that took place at the end of November 1963, to seven defendants: Vangjel Lezho, Fadil Kokomani, Robert Vulkani, Trifon Xhagjika, Thoma Rafaeli, Franko Sara, and Stavri Rafaeli, all senior graduates from military universities and academies of the Soviet Union and other Eastern European countries. What were the duties and functions of the seven defendants at that time, why were they arrested and charged and did they have a gap in the trial? Regarding these and others, we are aware of the archival documents issued by the Central State Archive (fund of the former Central Committee of the ALP) that are published for the first time by Memorie.al, where there is a correspondence between the High Court of the People’s Republic of Albania with the Central Committee and the Prime Minister, which we are publishing in full as they are in the relevant file, starting from this number.
Letter from the President of the Supreme Court, Shuaip Panariti, to the Central Committee
PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC OF ALBANIA Tirana on 18. XI.1963
Nr. 96 Secret
CENTRAL COMMITTEE OF P.P. ALBANIA
Attached to this letter we send you a report on the file of the defendants Vangjel Lezho etc.
Please let us know your opinion as soon as possible.
R E L A T I O N
The General Prosecutor’s Office with letter no. 0523 dated 15.XI.1963, sent us for trial in the first instance the defendant:
Stavri Rafaeli, who are accused of:
Vangjel Lezho and Fadil Kokomani, for the crime of treason against the Homeland (in the form of espionage), for agitation and propaganda, as well as for preparing to commit terrorist acts.
Trifon Xhagjika for the crime of treason against the Homeland (remaining in the preparatory phase), for agitation and propaganda as well as for preparation for committing terrorist acts.
Robert Vullkani for the crime of treason against the Homeland (in the form of espionage), for the crime of agitation and propaganda as well as for preparatory actions to flee abroad.
Thoma Rafaeli, Franko Sara and Stavri Rafaeli, for the crime of robbery against the Homeland (remaining in the preparatory phase for escape) as well as the crime of agitation and propaganda.
From the review of the court file, it results that the defendants Vangjel Lezho, Fadil Kokomani and Robert Vullkani, have admitted that they were put in the service of the Soviet Intelligence, that they had meetings with Valentin Zhenj, etc., to whom they gave informative reports. , on the work in the basic party organizations of the letters of the Central Committee of the ALP, that they provided oral information and everything they asked for, and that they once met with General Kuzmicki and two employees of the Soviet embassy in Tirana ( without knowing who they are), that they agitated and propagated against popular power as well as made preparations to flee abroad. Vangjel Lezho, Fadil Kokomani and Trifon Xhagjika have admitted that they have held talks to carry out terrorist acts against the Ministry of Interior.
Defendants Robert Vulkani and Trifon Xhagjika admitted that they also made preparatory actions to escape abroad, that they listened to foreign radio stations and prepared and distributed to their age-old friends with reactionary content.
The defendants Thoma Rafaeli, Franko Sara and Stavri Rafaeli, have admitted that they committed the crime of treason against the Homeland (attempting to escape on July 20, 1963) and that they agitated and propagated against the popular power.
We think that the proposal made by the General Prosecutor’s Office and the Ministry of Interior to hold the trial in open court is right for these reasons as well.
All the defendants in the investigation have admitted to committing the crimes for which they are charged.
There are no contradictions on the essential issues with the statements of the defendants.
A number of witnesses testified about the activity of the defendants.
There is a lot of material evidence in the file, such as the discarded tracts, old-fashioned compilations, weapons and other tools such as donkeys, etc., that were seized from the defendants at the time they tried to escape.
Considering the criminal activity they have
Developing these defendants, their guilty plea and the documents contained in the file, we think the trial should be done in open court. The holding of this open trial will help to further expose Khrushchev’s traitorous group, will further strengthen the revolutionary activity of our people, will be a warning to the shaky man, as well as to those who are married. with foreign women and who do not stay. We plan to hold the trial in the hall of the Tirana District Court, where 100 to 200 people can participate. If on your part you think the turnout should be higher, please let us know so we can provide another venue.
The General Prosecutor’s Office has informed us that it has appointed Major Isamedin Resen as the prosecutor to represent the prosecution in this case.
The appointment of a clerk (branch prosecutor) to represent the prosecution before a panel of the High Court and especially of an important case, which will take place in open court, does not seem at all fair to us for the following reasons: First, from the 20 years of experience of the functioning of the High Court, it has not happened so far even once, that a clerk (or branch prosecutor) has appeared to represent the accusation before the College of the High Court.
Secondly, the case, in this case, has a special importance, while the representative of the prosecution is not according to the prosecutor’s cassation staff. In addition, he does not even have a known title to appear in court as a representative of the prosecution. For the authority of the High Court itself and the importance of the case, a cassation prosecutor should be appointed to the High Court.
The trial is expected to take place after the holiday, on December 2 to begin. If on your part it is thought to start earlier and during the days of the feast to be interrupted, then we have the opportunity to start it on November 25th and continue it until November 27th, then interrupt it and start again on the 30th November.
Rita Marko’s message: The trial should be held behind closed doors
DESCRIPTION NO. 8941
Note on the follow-up of issues arising from the papers.
Regarding the report of the High Court to conduct the trial of Vangjel Lezho, etc., the following was done:
The relation was seen by sh. Rita and approved to do the following.
The trial should be held behind closed doors.
But with invitations to attend about 100 people.
The Party Committee should be in charge of preparing the list.
To be informed and the measures to be taken, Comrade Rrapo was called on 15.XI.1963 by Comrade Rita.
The said orders were given by us personally, to the President of the Court, Comrade Shuaip Panariti, also on 15.XI.1963.
19.XI.1963 (Llazi Stratobërdha)
Information of the High Court on Mehmet Shehu
INFORMATION TO THE PRIME MINISTER
The following defendants were sent by the General Prosecutor’s Office to be tried by the Military College of the High Court:
Vangjel Lezho, from the village of Sheper in the Gjirokastra district, resident in Tirana, member of the P.P.SH., graduated in the Soviet Union as a journalist, working for Radio Tirana, the brother of Dr. Qirjako Lezho, near the Hospital No. 1 Tirana.
Fadil Kokomani, from Durrës and resident in Tirana, member of P.P.SH., graduated in the Soviet Union as a journalist and composer, working for Radio Tirana, the brother of General Kokomani.
Captain Trifon Xhagjika, from Peshtani i Përmetit and resident in Tirana, disorganized, working in the Ministry of People’s Defense, brother of Dr. Ylli Xhagjika.
Robert Vullkani, from Korça, resident in Tirana, member of P.P.SH., graduated in the Soviet Union as a journalist, worked in the Printing House, the son of Sotir Vullkani and the brother of the fugitive, Petrit Vullkani.
Franko Sara, from Korça, resident in Tirana, disorganized, graduated in the Soviet Union, geological engineer, works in Geology.
Stavro Rafaeli, from Korça, resident in Tirana, member of P.P.SH., graduated in Czechoslovakia and the Soviet Union, for Canto and Scenography, with work at the Opera and Ballet Theater.
Mario Thoma Rafaeli from Korça and resident in Tirana, member of P.P.SH., graduated in the Soviet Union as an engineer, worked in the wards of M.L.K.A., brother of Stavri Rafaeli.
Defendants Vangjel Lezho, Fadil Kokomani and Robert Vullkani, were sent to trial on charges that in cooperation with each other, were put in the service of Soviet Intelligence and given to this Intelligence various information, defendants Vangjel Lezho, Fadil Kokomani and Captain Trifon Xhagjika, have been sent for trial on the charge that they have made preparations to commit acts of terror against the leaders of our party and our state.
All the defendants, Vangjel Lezho, Fadil Kokomani, Captain Trifon Xhagjika, Robert Vulkani, Franko Sara, Major Thoma Rafel and Stavri Rafael, have been sent to trial for the crimes, because in cooperation with each other, they tried to escape abroad and have made agitation and propaganda against popular power.
In particular, Stavri Rafael and Fadil Kokomani were sent for trial and for illegal possession of weapons. From the verification of the investigative materials in the court session and from the evidence obtained from the court, it resulted that the above defendants have started the hostile activity since the middle of 1960.
All the defendants claimed before the court that they have been in opposition to the political line of the Albanian Labor Party since the time of the XX Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. The defendants admitted that they had embraced the decisions of this Congress with zeal and full conscience, both because of their revisionist content and because they aimed at rapprochement with the capitalist states. They claimed in court that the ideas of the Twentieth Congress had spread through the hostile agitation they had done to each other as well as to other persons.
In particular, the defendant Robert Vulkani stated that he had started hostile activity since 1953 when he was studying in the Soviet Union, explaining that in the faculty where he studied, a lot of work was done to infect students with revisionist ideas and education. their with the aspect of adventurous, which are characteristic only for western states. The defendant explained that while he was studying in the Soviet Union, in those cases when the newspaper “Pravda” published an article against the Yugoslav revisionists, the professors told them not to trust “Pravda”, but to draw their own conclusions. That this defendant had started hostile activity since 1953, came from letters written by him, which he addressed to his father, Sotir Vulkan, which contained hatred towards the leadership of Pratia and a series of hostile slanders against the economic situation and the comprehensive work done by the people and the youth for the construction of a socialist society. These were seized and presented to the court as evidence of his guilt. Articles, speeches and pamphlets written by Yugoslav revisionists (Tito, Kardelj, Pjade and Gjilas) were also seized from this defendant, which he preserved for a long time, studied himself and gave to others for study. These materials, which contained hostile attacks and slanders against our Party and Government, as well as against the Marxist-Leninist Parties, have been seized and presented to the court as evidence of his guilt.
From the development of the trial as well as from the material of the investigation, it turned out that their activity took on a more organized and wider character, in the second half of 1960, exactly when Khrushchev’s revisionist group began to strain relations with our Party.
All the defendants claimed that as soon as these relations were aggravated and especially after their break-up, because they had embraced the revisionist ideas of the XX Congress and that guilty of the break-up of these relations, the interest wanted you to charged with the leadership of our Party, began a wider hostile activity extending not only to their own circle, but also to other persons, and succeeding in committing serious crimes, such as treason by espionage and escape to a foreign state, as well as in the direction of preparations to commit acts of terror against the leaders of the Party and our state./Memorie.al