Jezik / Language:
28 April 2011

Local Justice – Ristic and Devic: A Total of 32 Years in Prison

BIRN BiH Bihac
The Cantonal Court in Bihac pronounces Lazar Ristic and Predrag Devic guilty of crimes committed in Sanski Most, sentencing them to a total of 32 years’ imprisonment in a first instance verdict.

Under the verdict, Ristic was sentenced to a total of 20 years in prison, while Devic was sentenced to 12 years for the murder of 15 Bosniak civilians in Sanski Most in October 1995.

The trial chamber said it had been proved that 15 Bosniak men who were escorted by Republika Srpska soldiers while returning home after having performed their civil duty were killed on October 10, 1995.

“The cart in which the killed men were driving was stopped by indictees Ristic, Devic and Predrag Arsenic. Key witnesses, members of the RS Army who escorted them, testified about it. Their statements were clear and decisive.

"Witnesses who testified at the trial identified the indictees as the persons who forcibly took the group of Bosniak civilians away,” said Trial Chamber Chairwoman Edina Arnautovic.

Arnautovic stressed the importance of the statement given by Petar Arsenic, who admitted guilt and expressed regret. After reaching a plea deal with the Una-Sana Cantonal Prosecution, Arsenic was sentenced to ten years in prison.

The Trial Chamber of the Bihac Court said that Arsenic gave a detailed description of the event and the way in which he committed the crime together with Ristic and Devic.

The sentence against indictee Lazar Ristic also includes the sentence, which was previously pronounced against him by the Bihac Court, for the murder of two Bosniak women in Sanski Most in 1992.

The custody for Ristic and Devic, which was first ordered in May 2010, has been extended under this verdict.

The parties have the right to appeal the verdict.


This text was written as part of a project supported by US citizens through USAID in Bosnia and Herzegovina. BIRN is fully responsible for the content of the text, which does not necessarily reflect the views of USAID, or the US Government.

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