By Dashnor Kaloçi
Memorie.al / It was the afternoon of April 9, 1963, when the pursuit forces of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and those of the Army, and the Volunteer Forces of the Shkodra Highlands area, which since the middle of March of that year, were in a large-scale search operation, to make possible the place where the deputy of that area, Colonel Haxhi Hajdari, who had escaped, was hiding, received orders to group in the center of the city of Koplik. This order came after the lunch hours of that day, according to the instructions of Prime Minister Mehmet Shehu, (who led the operation from Tirana), a group of soldiers from the Ministry of Defense, headed by the Director of the Artillery Directorate, Major General Vaskë Gjino , they hit with artillery (with plague) the cave where MP Haxhi Hajdari was hiding, since due to the very position where that big rock was located, on the slope of a rock, it was impossible to capture and arrest him.
After that, the dismembered body of the rebel deputy who had begun to speak against collectivization and the establishment of cooperatives in the mountainous areas and the son of his friend (Nosh Paja) who was accompanying him, were loaded into the body of an Army “ZIS” car and they walked through all the villages of that area, where Colonel Haxhi Hajdari had been a deputy since the first legislature of 1945, until March 15 of that year, where he decided to escape, as he was in danger of being arrested by State Security. All of this tragic event is already known, as we have dealt with it before (in a long interview with the son of former MP Hajdari, Colonel Ferit Hajdari, as well as in a television documentary in 2018 on RTSH, with title “Cave of Freedom”), but what is not known and has never been made public, is what happened next, with those people and those families who sheltered and fed Colonel Haxhi Hajdar, during those weeks that he stayed hidden in that cave! Because the macabre murder of the rebel deputy and the son of his friend who accompanied him was only the prologue of a state crime, which would be followed by other victims (mainly from the Paja family), and long years of prison and exile. All these, etc., are made known through these archival documents, extracted from the Archive of the Ministry of the Interior, which are published for the first time and exclusively for the FJALA newspaper.
THE DOCUMENT WITH THE DECISION OF THE SHKODAR DISTRICT COURT, FOR THE SENTENCE OF THE FOUR DEFENDANTS, WHO WERE ACCUSED OF BEING CLOSE ASSOCIATES OF THE DEPUTY HAJJI HAJDARI, WHO ESCAPED AND WAS KILLED IN A CAVE IN THE VILLAGE RRJOLL, AFTER BEING SURROUNDED BY SECURITY AND ARMY FORCES
THE PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC OF ALBANIA
S H K O D Ò R DISTRICT COURT
NO OF DECISION 38-D.P. NO. OF THE ACT, 44.
“IN THE NAME OF THE PEOPLE”
The District Court of Shkodra, composed of:
Nuri Resnja Chairman
Avdo Dervishi, Acting Judge
Sali Kraja, Deputy Judge
Assisted by the secretary, Ibrahim Stankaj, with the participation of the Prosecutor, Jorgo Piro and in the presence of the defense lawyers, Muharrem Haxhija, Ali Paçrami and Sotir Shomo, on April 25, 1964, how to examine the case in an open court session of the defendants:
- PJETER PREK MARTINIT (PAJA), son of Preka and Prenda, born in 1897 in Rrjolle village of Shkodra and resident there, of social origin, a poor peasant, farmer, with Albanian citizenship and nationality, married, has two children , illiterate, disorganized, unconvicted, did not perform military service, we lined them up on April 2, 1963.
- AGE TOM PAJA, daughter of Toma and Luke, born in 1918 in Bzheta village and resident in Shkodër, now residing in Shtyllas i Fieri, with domestic occupation, poor peasant social origin, widow, has five children, with Albanian citizenship and nationality, illiterate, impartial, unconvicted, registered on August 25, 1963.
- LAN BAJRAM SHPELLZA, son of Bajram and Luba, born in 1943 in Rrjolle village and resident there, with Albanian citizenship and nationality, by profession a farmer, by social origin, poor peasant, family situation, single, has not committed military service, with education, four primary grades, we lined up on July 9, 1963, and;
- GJIN LEK KAÇEKU, born in 1918 in the town of Gimaj Dukagjin and a resident of Shkodër, of poor peasant origin, by profession a farmer, with Albanian citizenship and nationality, married, has four minor children, no previous convictions, served in the military , illiterate, impartial, unconvicted, lined up on March 19, 1963.
a) That the defendants Pjeter Martini, Age Tom Paja and Lan Shpellza, have been put in the service of the Yugoslav Intelligence, through the traitor Haxhi Hajdari and the saboteur Arif Shabani, whom they have sheltered, supplied and accompanied, in his hostile activity, have met with and have performed the duties assigned by him, being rewarded in gold coins, thus committing the crime provided by Article 64, related to Article 14 of the Criminal Code.
b) The defendant Pjetër Martini also participated in the burning of the pillars, committing the crime provided for by Article 30 of the Criminal Code, in relation to Article 16 of this Code.
c) The defendant, Gjin Lek Kaçeku, is accused of a crime against the state, provided by Article 218, point 1, of the Criminal Code.
The court, after examining the investigation materials, the evidence obtained during the trial, after listening to the Prosecutor, who requests that; all four defendants, to plead guilty to the crimes they are accused of and, specifically, the defendant Pjetër Prek Martini, (Paja), for the crime provided by articles 64 and 70, related to article 14 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, to be finally sentenced, with death, and confiscation of property.
The defendant Age Tom Paja, with the crime of treason against the homeland, as per article 4 and 14 of the Criminal Code, with 25 years of deprivation of liberty and confiscation of property.
Be charged, Lan Bajram Shpellza, for the crime provided by article 64, related to article 14 of the Criminal Code, with 20 years of deprivation of liberty and confiscation of property, as well as the defendant Gjin Lek Kaçeku, for the crime of not reporting the crime, according to article 219, point I, of the Criminal Code, with 5 years of imprisonment.
Protection, adv. Muhamet Haxhin, who requests the implementation of mitigating circumstances, for the defendants he represents, Pjetër and Age. Defense, adv. Ali Paçramin, who requests a minimum sentence for the defendant, Lan Shpellza, as well as the defense, adv. Sotir Shomo, who requests that Gjin Lek Kaçeku be dismissed from responsibility, as well as the last word of the defendants, who asked: Pjeter Paja, Age Paja and Gjin Leka, mercy, while Lan Shpellza, did not ask for mercy at all;
The defendants; Pjetër Prek Martini (Paja), Age Tom Paja and Lan Bajram Shpellza, through the traitor Haxhi Hajdari and the saboteur Arif Shabani, have put themselves in the service of the Yugoslav Intelligence and have performed tasks set by this Intelligence, undermining the independence of the People’s Republic of Albania, its external security and economic power. It was proved indisputably that the three defendants, for a relatively long time, with continuity and consequence, have made their house available for meetings and gatherings with the people of the saboteur Arif Shabani, of the Nosh traitors Kola and Haxhi Hajdari, the first son of the defendant Age, and the second, a close friend of all the defendants.
These, their activity of treason against the homeland, have developed in the form of performing the duties of a foreign agency, which consists of the unreserved help given by them, to establish links between the saboteur Arif Shabani and the traitor Haxhi Hajdari , in housing and supplying them with food, in sending letters from one place to another, in providing information, in accompanying them, especially the defendant Pjetër Prek Martini (Paja), who for many years has been put in the service of the Yugoslav Intelligence, against his own country and participated in two crimes, one more ugly than the other, does not deserve any mitigating circumstances and should be punished by capital punishment.
The defendant Age, too, has put herself, without any hesitation, at the service of foreign intelligence, making her home in Rrjoll and Shkodër, for more than ten years, a nursery for sworn enemies, represents great danger, and must to be hit with all the rigor of the law. The influence of the traitor Haxhi Hajdari on all the above defendants, who claim protection and mitigating circumstances, is not everything. The two defendants, Pjeter and Age, illiterate, but mature in age and experience, have carried out a wide range of hostile activity, as they have immediately shown their way of betrayal, therefore there can be no word of mercy for them .
Even the defendant, Lan Bajram Shepllza, has committed the serious crime that our law provides for, and the defense proceedings for this defendant, for mitigating the crime to the minimum, is not possible. With all the influence of the traitor Haxhi Hajdari, in this defendant, his young age, his repentance and his sincerity, are circumstances that this court takes into account when sentencing. As for the defendant, Gjin Lek Kaceku, in the punishment part, the court takes into account his large family and his difficult economic situation.
FOR THESE REASONS
The Shkodër District Court, considering articles 277 and 279 of the Code of Criminal Procedure
The four defendants declare as follows:
Pjetër Prek Martini (Paja), for the crime of treason against the homeland and based on article 64 and 14 of the Criminal Code, sentences him to death, by shooting, and confiscation of his property. It declares him guilty of the crime of diversion, based on Article 70 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, and sentences him to 25 years of imprisonment. Consolidating the punishments for both crimes, based on Article 48 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, the defendant Pjeter is finally sentenced to death by firing squad and the confiscation of his property.
He declares the defendant, Age Tom Paja and the defendant Lan Bajram Shpellza, guilty of the crime of treason against the country, committed in cooperation and based on article 64 and 14 of the Criminal Code, sentences them: Age Tom, with 25 years of imprisonment freedom and confiscation of her property and Lan Bajram Shpellza, with 15 years of deprivation of liberty and confiscation of his property. He declares the defendant, Gjin Lek Kacekun, guilty of the crime of not declaring a crime against the State and, based on Article 218 of the Criminal Code, sentences him to 5 (five) years of imprisonment.
The serving of the sentence for the defendant Age Toma begins from the date of her arraignment, which is August 25, 1963. For the defendant, Lan Bajram Shpellza, the serving of the sentence begins from the date of his arraignment, which is July 9, 1963 whereas for the defendant, Gjin Lek Kaçeku, the serving of the sentence begins from the date of his conviction, which is March 19, 1963.
Court and attorneys’ fees are charged to the defendants.
This decision, as far as the defendant Pjeter is concerned, is mainly subject to review by the Supreme Court, while for all the defendants, an appeal and protest is allowed by the Prosecutor’s Office, within five days, from its announcement in the Supreme Court.
It was announced in Shkodër, on April 25, 1964.
Chief Secretary Chairman
Ibrahim Stankaj Nuri Resnja
NOTE: On 27.4.1964, an appealed appeal was filed, before the defendants Pjetër Prek Martini and Age Tom Paja, the documents for review were sent to the High Court, Tirana, in letter No. 44, dated 29.4.1964.
Shkodër, on 29.4.1964 Chief Secretary
THE DOCUMENT WITH THE DECISION OF THE CRIMINAL COLLEGE OF THE HIGH COURT, ON THE SENTENCE OF AGE TOM PAJA, PJETTER PREK MARTINI, LAN BAJRAM SHPELLZA AND GJIN LEK KOÇEKU, ACCUSED AS CLOSE ASSOCIATES OF THE DEPUTY COLONEL HAXHI HAJDARI AND THE SAVERSANT, ARIF SHABANI
THE PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC OF ALBANIA
No. 62 of the Basic Register
No. 51 of decision
IN THE NAME OF THE PEOPLE
The Judicial Council of the Criminal College of the Supreme Court, formed under the chairmanship of:
Irakli Bozo, N/Chairman of the Supreme Court, with member:
Nedret Hoxha, Member
Nazmi Peza, Member
In the open session of 14.5.1964, it examined the case, No. 67, which belongs to:
PJETER MARTINIT (PAJA), son of Preka and Prenda, 66 years old, born and resident in Rrjolle village of Shkodra, of origin and social status, poor peasant, no party, illiterate, married, has two children, no previous convictions seen, arrested on 2.4.1963.
AGE PAJA, daughter of Toma and Luke, 45 years old, born in Bzheta village of Shkodra and living in Shkodra, social origin, poor peasant, social status, housewife, no party, illiterate, widow, no more convictions first, arrested on 25.8.1963.
LAN SHPELLZA, son of Bajram and Luba, 20 years old, born and resident in Rrjolle village of Shkodra, origin and social status, poor peasant, no party, with primary education, not previously convicted, arrested, on 9.7.1963.
GJIN KAÇEKU, son of Leka and Prena, 45 years old, born in Gjinaj village of Shkodra and resident in Shkodra, of origin and social status, poor peasant, no party, illiterate, married, has four children, no previous convictions seen, arrested on 19.3.1963.
Pjetër Martini, has betrayed the country and committed acts of diversion, i.e. committed the crimes provided for by articles 64 and 70 of the Criminal Code, Age Paja and Lan Shpellza, have betrayed the country, i.e. committed the crime provided for from article 64 of the Criminal Code and that; Gjin Kaçeku did not report the crime of treason against the country, committed by Nosh Paja, who would escape. In his presence, the two mentioned above talked about the clothing items and food items that they would take with them.
They talked about the place where they would stay during the escape and the reason why they would escape. Not only that, but they told defendant Gjin that they would escape immediately and that they would only allow him to leave as long as it took him to get home, see the children, and get the revolver. . The defendant Gjin has admitted that Haxhiu told him that there was no need to take tesha, so he would give them to him.
In such circumstances, the court has rightly accepted that the defendant Gjin understood from the beginning and with certainty that Haxhi Hajdari and Nosh Paja were prepared to escape and that they would carry out this action immediately. Consequently, the defendant should report to the state authorities immediately, in order to prevent the commission of the criminal act by Haxhiu and Noshi. This is exactly what the judge Gjin did not do.
He made the report to the state authorities the next day, i.e., at a time when the commission of the crime could no longer be prevented. The court has made the right determination of the crime committed by the defendant Gjin, but the punishment imposed against him is severe. The court, in determining the sentence, did not take into account the fact that the defendant Gjin has honestly shown the crime committed, as well as the fact that he, as an illiterate person, has not yet been separated from the influence of backward customs, these customs that have influenced the commission of the crime on his part. Therefore, the action of the court in this part should be changed.
FOR THESE REASONS:
The judicial council of the Criminal College of the Supreme Court, based on point 1 and point 4, article 313 of the Code of Criminal Procedure
Enforcing decision No. 38, dt. 25.4.1964, of the District Court of Shkodra, in the part that belongs to Pjetër Martini (Paja), Age Paja and Lan Shpellza. The change of the above decision, in the part that belongs to Gjin Kaçek and his punishment, based on the first point of article 218 of the Criminal Code, with 3 (three) years of imprisonment.
The serving of the sentence begins on 19.3.1963. Upholding the rest of the above decision. This decision is final, as far as Pjetër Martini (Paja) is concerned, it cannot be executed, without receiving the answer to the prayer for forgiveness, from which he has the right to present it to the Presidium of the People’s Assembly, within three days, from the date of receiving the notification on this decision. Memorie.al
Tirana, on 14.5.1964
Member Member Chairman
N. Peza N. Hoxha Irakli Bozo
Head of state