Jezik / Language:
5 December 2013

Pavic Sentenced to Three Years

Stjepana Ivanus BIRN BiH Livno

The Cantonal Court in Livno sentences Ilija Pavic, former member of the military police with the Croatian Defence Council, HVO, to three years in prison for crimes against civilians in Livno in 1992.

“The Trial Chamber rendered a decision, pronouncing Pavic guilty of the murder of Milorad Crncevic and sentencing him to three years’ imprisonment,” said Trial Chamber Chairwoman Ana Krstanovic.
Judge Krstanovic said that it was proved, beyond reasonable doubt, that HVO members ordered the Crncevic family to come out of their house during the night on August 8/9, 1992 and that Pavic killed Milorad Crncevic from an automatic gun.
Prior to the pronouncement of the verdict, the Cantonal Prosecution and Pavic’s Defence presented their closing statements and the indictee testified in his defence.  
During his testimony Pavic said that, on August 8, 1992 he came to his shift as military policeman and that he was tasked with visiting houses in order to check whether the curfew was respected.
“We arrived to Crncevics’. It is not true that we broke the door or window...They told us that a dying woman was in the house. There was no noise or curses. When we checked the dying old lady, Milorad began running away down the stairs. I warned him to stop four times. I shot in the air and in front of him. I had not known Milorad before. I only knew his son Milutin, Pavic said.
Pavic said that he did not know that the Crncevics were Serbs.
“The man fell down and began calling for help. He may have told us to call an ambulance. When the ambulance arrived, they drove him to the hospital. When I came to the base, I filed a report and went home. When I was released from custody, I met Milutin Crncevic and apologised to him. I am offering a hundred of apologies to the man because of the accident that happened, but I am not responsible for war crimes,” Pavic said.
In its closing statement the Cantonal Prosecution said that the responsibility of indictee Pavic had been proved completely.
“Ilija Pavic’s admission is important. It will be beneficial for him and help him. It is an indisputable mitigating circumstance. When deciding on the sentence, the Court should consider all pieces of evidence, as well as the mitigating circumstance,” Prosecutor Snezana Kukic said.
Presenting her closing statement, Defence attorney Ana Primorac said that no elements of war crime, but another crime, were present.
“Not every crime committed during the war is and can be considered war crime. There was no intention to deprive the person of his life, but to incapacitate him. Ilija was 19 at the time. He neither wanted nor intended to kill Milorad Crncevic,” Primorac said.
The parties have the right to file an appeal against the verdict with the Supreme Court of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
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