Eight Years Imprisonment for Mensur Dakic for War Crimes

June 15, 2019 8:00 AM

Having held a session in the criminal case against the accused Mensur Đakić and Begzad Kajtazi, the Appellate Division Panel of Section I for War Crimes of the Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina delivered a judgment refusing the appeal filed by the accused Mensur Đakić as ill-founded, while granting the appeal filed by the Prosecutor’s Office of Bosnia and Herzegovina from the convicting part of the trial judgment, so the judgment of the Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina No. S1 1 K 024207 17 KrI of 10 September 2018 is modified concerning the sentencing decision, in the manner that the accused Mensur Đakić, concerning the criminal offense of War Crimes against Civilians under Article 142(1) of the Criminal Code of the Socialist Federative Republic of Yugoslavia (CC SFRY) as read with Article 30 of the same Code, of which he was found guilty, is now sentenced to 8 (eight) years of imprisonment.

The appeal the Prosecutor filed from the acquitting part of the judgment is refused as ill-founded, and the trial judgment is upheld in that part.

The trial judgment of the Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina No. S1 1 K 024207 17 Krl of 10 September 2018 found the accused Mensur Đakić guilty that by the acts described in the challenged judgment he committed the criminal offense of War Crimes against Civilians under Article 142(1) of the CC SFRY as read with Article 30 of the same Code, which is why he was sentenced to 2 (two) years of imprisonment. Conversely, the accused Begzad Kajtazi was acquitted of the charges that by the acts described in the acquitting part of the judgment he committed the criminal offense of War Crimes against Civilians under Article 173(1)c) of the Criminal Code of Bosnia and Herzegovina (CC BiH).

The accused are relieved of the obligation to cover the costs of the criminal proceeding, while the victims are advised to pursue their compensation claim in civil proceedings.

The Prosecutor’s Office of Bosnia and Herzegovina filed a timely appeal from the trial judgment, concerning the decision on criminal sanction and the incorrectly and incompletely established facts, moving the Appellate Panel to grant the appeal, completely revoke the trial judgment and order a retrial before the Appellate Division Panel of the Court of BiH.

Defense counsel for the accused Mensur Đakić filed his appeal on the grounds of error of law and error of fact, moving the Appellate Division Panel of the Court of BiH to grant the appeal, reverse the trial judgment and acquit the accused of the charges, or revoke the trial judgment and order a retrial.

The Defense filed a timely response to Prosecutor’s appeal, arguing that the appeal was ill-founded.

On 8 March 2019 the Appellate Panel held a session at which the appeals and responses were briefly orally presented, with both parties maintaining the arguments they raised in their written submissions.

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