[JURIST] An Albania Supreme Court [official website] judge was shot four times outside his home in the capital Tirana, according to local police Monday. Ardian Nuni [official profile], a former law professor nominated to the high court in 2007, was hospitalized with non-life-threatening injuries to his shoulder and leg. The attack, which took place over the weekend, was described by the Supreme Court in a press release as
a serious attack not only against the Supreme Court, but also against the judicial power of the Republic of Albania. This event, but also some others that have occurred in recent years against judges, court personnel, family members and their property, are a great concern not only for judges but for Albanian society as a whole, interested in the normal rule of law.The court added that the attacks have "negatively affected and distorted the perception by the public on the delivery of justice and impaired the authority of judges and the judiciary." Albanian Premier Sali Berisha condemned the latest attack [press release], urging authorities "to take all the measures to bring to justice the author of this extremely criminal act". Albanian police have detained 15 people for questioning in connection with the shooting.
Rights groups and anti-corruption monitors have pressed the Albanian government to take swift action against Nuni's assailants and continue the process of judicial reform in the country [background remarks]. Concerns over corruption and the influence of organized crime in particular have hindered [press statement] the process of Albania's ascension to the European Union (EU) [official website].