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26 November 2015
News

Bosnian Croat Fighter Jailed for Killing Serb Civilian

Dragana Erjavec BIRN BiH Sarajevo
Ilija Pavic, a former fighter with the Croatian Defence Council, was sentenced to two-and-a-half years in prison for killing the Serb civilian during a raid in the western town of Livno in 1992.
The Bosnian Federation supreme court on Thursday convicted Pavic, a former member of the Croatian Defence Council Second Battalion’s military police, of killing Serb civilian Milorad Crncevic during a raid on August 8, 1992.

“This chamber concluded that Pavic, along with two other fellow fighters, who have died in the meantime, entered the house of Draginja Rosic, and after Milorad Crncevic left the building, [Pavic] told him to stop several times and then fired at him and shot him in the thigh, and Rosic succumbed soon afterward,” said presiding judge Nidzara Zlotrg.

Explaining the verdict, Zlotrg said that the court did not accept the prosecution claim that Pavic intended to kill rather than just wound the victim.

But it also did not accept the defence claim that the murder was not a war crime, the judge said.

“The defendant was part of a raid carried out by the Croatian Defence Council, which means that the actions were certainly committed in the context of war,” she said.

As mitigating circumstances, she said the court took into account Pavic’s partial admission of guilt, his good behaviour during the trial and the fact that he was a father of four, including three minors.

Pavic was retried before the supreme court after two previous verdicts from the cantonal court in Livno, sentencing him to three years in prison, were quashed.

The verdict cannot be appealed.

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