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12 April 2013
News

Hospitalized after Wounding

Dzenita Dzubur BIRN Bihac

Testifying in his defence, indictee Redzep Beganovic says that he was on sick leave in December 1993, when the crime charged upon him was committed.

He confirmed that he was member of the Fourth Brigade with the National Defence of the Western Bosnia Autonomous Region, but he was on sick leave in December, after having been wounded.

According to the charges, on December 13, 1993 Beganovic, who was accompanied by Hazim Keranovic and Amir Coralic, physically abused Ferid Covic in Sturlici neighbourhood, Cazin. He allegedly did that because Covic’s son Enes was a member of the Fifth Corps of the Army of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, ARBiH.

Acting in collaboration with Keranovic and Coralic, he allegedly forcibly took two minors out of their house and drove them to Trzac village. He tried to rape one of them.

“I was in a café on that day, when Cigo and Pango came and invited me to come with them to Trzacka rastela, where our command was situated, in order to get our salaries. Cigo was driving the car, while I was in his co-driver seat. On our way to Rasteli, Cigo stopped in front of a shop to buy some alcohol. Both of them went out of the car, began shouting and shooting. At that moment an elderly woman and a child came out of the house,” Beganovic said.

He told the Court that the boy was supposed to show them where “Kempes’ house” was.

“Upon our arrival, they took a girl out of the house. She joined us in the car. Ten minutes later we arrived in front of another house. Cigo and Pago went out again. When they came back, I saw them bringing another girl, but I did not see the boy any more. We moved on towards Trzac,” Beganovic said.

As per a proposal by Chamber Chairman Reuf Kapic, the indictee continued testifying in absence of public.

When the hearing was opened to public again, three more Defence witnesses were examined. Nijaz Tahirovic said that, after having been wounded in December 1993, he stayed at a hospital in Velika Kladusa, adding that indictee Beganovic, whose leg was injured, stayed in the same room with him.
 
Tahirovic was not able to remember the date, when Beganovic came to the hospital, but he said that he stayed for about ten days.

Witness Fikret Celebic, who was Commander of the Police Station in Velika Kladusa in 1993, said that police filed criminal reports against three people for having raped girls, but, as he said, he did not remember the names of those persons.

“I know that one of the suspects was nicknamed Cigo. We undertook all the necessary actions to investigate the crime, but the person known as Cigo fled from Velika Kladusa, so we could not solve the crime. As senior inspector Salih Mujanovic helped him flee, I remember that we suspended him from his duty,” Celebic said.

Witness Osman Delalic, former comrade of indictee Beganovic, said that he did not know anything about that event, but his colleagues told him that Redzep Beganovic and Amir Coralic were arrested in relation to this case.

“I personally knew Keranovic, known as Cigo. Nobody linked him to this event. He was not a member of our Brigade. His goal was to leave abroad. I personally helped him do that,” Delalic said.

The trial is due to continue on May 10.

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