Jul 4, 2016

Examination of technical witness PRH705

Between 5 and 12 May, the next Prosecution witness came to testify: PRH705. This witness testified about the generation, storage, and maintenance of business records, specifically, call data records, cell site-related data, and the Touch subscriber database. This evidence will in turn be relied on by the Prosecution to attribute telephones to the accused. Like some of the previous witnesses, also the testimony of this witness was very technical and detailed.

Given that this witness needs protective measures, testifying under a pseudonym, parts of his testimony were conducted in private session in order to protect his identity. The witness is specialized in radio network planning and network optimization, and quickly the content of his testimony became quite technical, speaking of suppliers who may have access to make changes to the network and the details of the network and its specificities.

Within the company Touch, all requests for cooperation and information from third parties are processed by the governmental affairs unit, and the witness is extensively questioned about the internal process within the company.  At the relevant time, 2004-2005, the IT department was responsible for the call data record in the whole process of mediation, filtering and its billing. It is the commercial department that's responsible for the processing of the application forms of potential subscribers. The witness is questioned about the cell site data and possibilities for optimizing the network.

The witness was taken through his earlier statements and draft statements, but since only the parties to the proceedings have access to those statements, it is impossible for us to assess the precise content thereof. The ultimate statement that was signed by this witness was 73 pages in total. The initial statement had been prepared by someone else from his company, and he has not been able to verify all aspects thereof. The defence raised the fact that this situation is less than ideal, because the defence cannot cross-examine the witness on those issues that he does not have personal knowledge about, and they cannot cross-examine the witness's predecessor either.

Since the parties are still waiting for additional information from the authorities regarding this witness's testimony, the defence for Ayyash objected to proceeding with cross-examination; the defence for Badreddine wanted to start the cross-examination of this witness, but were unfortunately not available on that particular day, so the witness ended his testimony until the additional information concerning his testimony arrives at the court.

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