Jezik / Language:
29 January 2008

Vlasenica Custody Plea

The Prosecution of BiH has asked that three suspects from Vlasenica be held in custody.
The Prosecution of BiH has filed a custody order motion for Predrag Bastah, Goran Viskovic and Veljko Basic, who are suspected of war crimes committed in the Vlasenica area in 1992.

Prosecutor Sanja Jukic said that in the case of Veljko Basic, who is 82 years old, "some other measures" may be considered instead of custody.

Justifying its custody order motion, the Prosecution of BiH indicated that "there is a grounded suspicion that the suspects committed the war crime", and that there was a possibility that they might attempt to escape or influence witnesses and accessories. It also said that the suspects represented "a threat to the safety of citizens and their property".

Jukic added that the grounded suspicion that the three men committed the crime charged upon them was "based on witnesses' statements given in the course of the investigation" and the available material evidence.

The Prosecutor claims that the witness said that the three suspects "were members of the Public Safety Centre in Vlasenica" and that they "performed the unlawful arrest of civilians and imprisoned them in Susica detention camp".

The Defence teams objected to the Prosecution's motion. Veljko Civsa, Basta's Defence attorney, suggested that his client be released on bail. Civsa said that Bastah was unemployed and would therefore use his house as a financial guarantee.

Slavko Asceric, Defence attorney of Veljko Basic, stressed that his client was sick and that he was 82 years old and "therefore cannot leave the country or influence the witnesses". He asked that some alternative measures be pronounced against him.

The preliminary hearing judge will render a decision on the custody order motion at a later stage.

Bastah, Viskovic and Basic were arrested on January 28.
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