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24 June 2015
News

Bosiljko and Ostoja Markovic Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison

Albina Sorguc BIRN BiH Sarajevo

Under a first instance verdict pronounced by the Bosnian state court, former Bosnian Serb Army soldiers Bosiljko and Ostoja Markovic have been sentenced to ten years in prison each for the rape of a minor in Kotor-Varos in 1992.

Saban Maksumic, the trial chamber chair, said it had been determined beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendants had raped the injured party, known as S-4.

Maksumic said the chamber had determined that the defendants, both former members of the Kotor-Varos Brigade of the Bosnian Serb Army, alternately raped S-4 several times on June 28, 1992. After having raped her, the defendants forced S-4 to perform oral sex on them. She was fourteen at the time.

The verdict also ordered the defendants to jointly pay the amount of 26,500 Marks to the injured party, representing compensation for non-material damage caused by the violation of her rights and freedoms, as well as her mental suffering. This is the first case in which the state court has ordered compensation to an injured party within a criminal proceeding.

“Along with Predrag Cicmanovic, who was killed in 1995, they [the defendants] came in front of A.A.’s house with a minivan driven by Mirko Bozic. Cicmanovic then took S-4 out of the house and into the minivan, where he forced her to have sexual intercourse with him,” Maksumic said.

The chamber determined that Cicmanovic put a knife to S-4’s throat, while one of the defendants held a pistol to her forehead. The vehicle stopped in the village of Dabovci.

“After that Cicmanovic and the defendants alternately raped S-4, forcing her to perform oral sex following the rape,” Maksumic said.

Maksumic said the court fully trusted S-4, who’d said that after the minivan had stopped, other soldiers also raped her inside the minivan.

He said the court decided not to trust testimony given by witnesses who offered an alibi for Bosiljko Markovic.

The defendants have been sentenced according to the criminal code of the Former Yugoslavia, which was in effect when the crime was committed. It was determined that this criminal code is more favourable for the defendants.

“The court considers that the ten year sentence pronounced against each of the defendants is adequate, considering the circumstances of the case and that it will send a clear message to potential perpetrators that they will not go unpunished,” Maksumic said.

Prohibitive measures which were previously ordered against the defendants have now been extended. The defendants and their defense attorneys failed to appear at the pronouncement of the verdict.

The parties have the right to appeal the verdict.

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