Jezik / Language:
29 June 2015

Prosecution Calls for Continued Prohibitive Measures Against Miletic, Sabic and Brkic

Selma Učanbarlić BIRN BiH Sarajevo

The Bosnian state prosecution has called upon the state court to extend prohibitive measures against state court judge Azra Miletic, Senad Sabic and Ramo Brkic, who’ve been accused of offering and accepting bribes.

Sabic and Brkic are accused of promising a gift in the form of money to Miletic, a judge with the appellate division of the state court, in order to ensure a more favourable outcome in second instance proceedings against them for organized crime. The indictment alleges that Miletic accepted the arrangement and received part of the money through an intermediary.

The suspects were arrested in February 2014, and the court subsequently ordered them into custody. After a month spent in detention, the prosecution did not seek an extension of custody measures for Miletic and Brkic. Sabic has remained under house arrest since June.

Prosecutor Dzermin Pasic that even though the indictment has been confirmed, there is still a risk the proceedings may be disrupted. Pasic asked that the ban on the suspects meeting or contacting prosecution witnesses be upheld.

“We believe that extending prohibitive measures to this minimum extent is important for the protection of the proceedings,” Pasic said.

Husein Music, Sabic’s defense attorney, objected to continuing the prohibitive measures, on the grounds of there being no real danger of Sabic approaching witnesses.

“The measures proposed by the prosecution do not hinder Sabic. But as the defense, I have to oppose this proposal. I have not received any evidence that Sabic was sending messages to witnesses from the detention unit in Mostar, and he was ordered into that detention,” Music said.

Edina Residovic, Miletic’s defense attorney, also called on the court to not accept this proposal.

“Conversations aren’t the problem, but persuading someone to do something. That is a criminal offense,” Residovic said, referring to the European Court of Human Rights and the Bosnian state court regarding the ordering of prohibitive measures.

Asim Crnalic, Brkic’s defense attorney, said he doesn’t oppose extending the prohibitive measures, but claimed that the prosecution didn’t demonstrate any wrongdoing on the part of his client to justify continued prohibitive measures.

Prosecutor Pasic said that the proceedings were affected by the suspects’ statements to the media and their family members about the proceedings and the work of the court and the prosecution. The defense teams said that the prosecution gave information regarding the proceedings to the media.

“The media was capacitated by the prosecution, not by the defense. The majority of the content about this case came from prosecution sources. As far as the defense goes, it responded very modestly,” Crnalic said.

Residovic said she learned about the content of the indictment from the media, before she receiving a copy of it herself. She also said footage from the first hearing, held after the arrest of the suspects, were given to the media without the approval of the defense.

The court will render a decision on the extension of prohibitive measures at a later stage.

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