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16 December 2013
News

Custody for Nikola Andrun Requested

Mirna Buljugić BIRN BiH Sarajevo

The Prosecution of Bosnia and Herzegovina requests custody for Nikola Andrun, who was released from prison, where he was serving his sentence, after a verdict against him for crimes against the civilian population in Capljina in 1993 was quashed.

Listing reasons for ordering him into custody, Prosecutor Marijana Cobovic mentioned a danger that he might flee and that the public order might be disturbed.

“Nikola Andrun was previously sentenced in Stolac. He is unemployed. His financial status is bad. He lives in the vicinity of the Croatian border. He is motivated to evade the trial by fleeing,” Cobovic said.
 
She said that the Prosecution of Bosnia and Herzegovina had not obtained new pieces of evidence and that the old ones were attached to the indictment.

In August 2008 Andrun was sentenced, under a second instance verdict, to 18 years in prison for war crimes against the civilian population committed in Gabela detention camp, Capljina municipality. He was sentenced for having participated, as deputy Manager of Gabela detention camp, in the murder, torture and inhumane treatment of detained civilians during 1993.

According to a State Court’s decision, Andrun and nine other former convicts for genocide and war crimes was released from prison, where he was serving his sentence, on November 18 this year. 

This decision was made after the Constitutional Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina, acting on appeals filed by convicts, determined that, in their case the Criminal Code of the former Yugoslavia should have been applied instead of the Criminal Code of BiH.

Drazen Zubak, Defence attorney of indictee Andrun, said that the State Prosecution’s proposal was unfounded and reasons were discriminatory.

“How can a man, who has been held in custody and prison for eight years, work anywhere? Why is his financial situation mentioned as a reason? This is discriminatory,” Zubak said, requesting the Court to reject the State Prosecution’s proposal.

The Appellate Chamber will render its decision at a later stage.
 
The Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina previously rejected custody order motions for nine convicts, whose execution of sentences was discontinued. The State Court determined that the law did not allow for such a possibility at this stage of the proceedings.

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