05 September 2016
On 01 September 2016, David Schwendiman, Lead Prosecutor of the EU Special Investigative Task Force (SITF), was appointed Specialist Prosecutor (Chief Prosecutor) of the newly established Kosovo Specialist Prosecutor’s Office (SPO).
Mr. Schwendiman was appointed pursuant to Article 35 of the Kosovo Law on Specialist Chambers and Specialist Prosecutor’s Office passed in August 2015. His appointment marks the formal transition of the SITF into the SPO.
Upon being advised of the appointment, Mr. Schwendiman noted that it is a welcome and further step on the path to getting the institutions provided for in the Kosovo law up and running at the highest international standard.
“The transition from the SITF to the SPO is seamless,” he said. “The Specialist Prosecutor and the SPO will continue to carry on the investigation started by the SITF and we will continue our preparations for the next phase of our work.”
“I look forward to meeting people in the region and meeting with the media when it is appropriate in the coming weeks and months.”
SITF at a glance
The Special Investigative Task Force (SITF) was formed in September 2011 to conduct an independent criminal investigation into the allegations contained in the Council of Europe report of January 2011 by Senator Dick Marty.
In September 2016 the SITF transitioned into the Specialist Prosecutor’s Office (SPO). It consists of international staff and is located in The Hague (the Netherlands).
Mr. David Schwendiman of the United States has been the SITF Lead Prosecutor since May 2015, and was appointed on 01 September 2016 as the Specialist Prosecutor. Mr. Schwendiman brings with him a wealth of professional and academic experience working at the highest levels in both international and domestic criminal prosecution. Prior to joining the SITF, Mr. Schwendiman served, among others, in Afghanistan and in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Mr. Schwendiman succeeds Mr. Clint Williamson, who was the SITF Lead Prosecutor from October 2011 until August 2014.