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13 September 2007
News

Lucic: Prosecution presents closing arguments

BIRN BiH
The prosecution has asked the Trial Chamber to pronounce Kreso Lucic guilty of crimes against humanity.
The Prosecution of BiH presented its closing arguments at the trial of Kreso Lucic and asked the Trial Chamber to pronounce him guilty of crimes against humanity committed in Kresevo in June and July 1993.

"The truth has been proven. Kreso Lucic committed, as commander of Military Police with the Croatian Defence Council (HVO), the criminal offences charged upon him. We therefore expect the Court to pronounce an adequate sentence," Prosecutor Slavica Terzic said.

The indictment charges Lucic with having participated in the detention and torture of Bosniak civilians from Rakova Noga, Crnici, Bjelovici, Bukve and Ramici in Kresevo municipality during June and July 1993. He is also charged with having aided the other soldiers in inhumane treatment, forced labour and detention of people in bad conditions.

The prosecutor claims that the criminal offences, charged upon Lucic by the indictment, have been confirmed by witnesses who were detained in "Ivo Lola Ribar" elementary school in Kresevo and in
"Sunje" detention camp. The presented material evidence confirms the same, the prosecutor adds.

"The indictee arrested Aisa Agic and other women from the village of Buke on 24 June 1993. The women were detained on the second floor in the elementary school building in Kresevo. They occasionally performed forced labour, including the making of hay and picking of fruit and vegetable," Terzic said, quoting statements given by witnesses during the trial.

Terzic said that witnesses had confirmed that the indictee had the authority to release detainees from the camp. He was also the commander of the policemen who forced the prisoners to dig trenches on front lines.

During the hearing, the prosecutor reminded the Trial Chamber of statements given by witnesses who claimed that "the indictee used to beat and maltreat them in the Elektroprivreda building in Kresevo".

"Meho Hodzic was beaten in the Elektroprivreda building three times. He would cover the injuries by putting a piece of cloth over them and return to Sunje detention camp," Terzic said adding that "some
other prisoners suffered similar experiences".

Terzic also mentioned the defence's statements made in the course of the trial, which indicated that "the capture of Bosniaks was justified", although "the witness confirmed that no legal proceeding was conducted against them while they were detained".

The defence shall present its closing arguments on 14 September.
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