Jezik / Language:
9 March 2007

Vukovic: Witnesses Defend Indictee's Character

Two protected Defence witnesses have spoken of Radmilo Vukovic's character - and of his alleged intimate relationship with a key Prosecution witness.

Two childhood friends appeared as protected defence witnesses at the trial of Radmilo Vukovic, which is being heard at the Court of BiH in Sarajevo.

Vukovic is charged with the rape of one Bosniak woman, which took place in the summer of 1992 on the territory of Foca municipality.

Protected witness C claims that he has known Vukovic since he was ten years old. As he said, they "have not separated since then, regardless of the fact that the witness is Bosniak and Vukovic a Serb".

"You could never feel that attention is focused on nationality," witness C said.

The witness said that he was very close to the indictee and that they often spoke about very private things.

"As all men, we talked about whether anyone has a woman on the side," the witness remembered and added that in 1991 Vukovic told him that he was in a relationship with a colleague from work and that "it is not an important relationship".

Witness D also said that in 1991 he knew that Vukovic was in a relationship with a Bosniak woman whom this witness described as not of "clean morality".

"I warned him not to do that because she is a Bosniak woman. He told me that it was just a casual relationship," witness D remembered.

Both witnesses claimed that the indictee had good relations with Bosniaks in Foca.

"All refugees from Foca whom I talked to during the war said only the best about Radmilo. Some even talked about how he saved them from Correctional facility Foca," witness C said.

"Vukovic helped the Bosniak people a lot and I cannot think of anyone who could have a negative opinion about him," witness D claimed.

According to the indictment, in June 1992 Vukovic, who was at the time a member of military forces of former Srpska Republika Bosnia and Herzegovina, physically abused a female person, threatened her with death and then "used her unconscious state" and raped her.

It is further stated in the indictment that Vukovic repeated the rape on multiple occasions and that, after she was expelled from Foca, the victim gave birth to a male child.

The trial will be continued on March 27, when the defence will complete the presentation of its evidence.
 Both sides have announced that they will present their closing arguments on the same day.
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