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Miroslav Anic Admits Guilt for Crimes Committed in Stupni Do

3. November 2010.00:00
The State Court on Wednesday ordered one-month custody for Miroslav Anic, known as Firga, after he pleaded guilty to three counts against him related to crimes committed against civilians and prisoners of war in the Kiseljak and Vares area.

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The Prosecution of Bosnia and Herzegovina filed the custody order motion on Wednesday, claiming the indictee might seek to flee or influence witnesses or accomplices if he remained at liberty.

Despite the fact that, after having been unavailable to prosecution bodies for several years, Anic surrendered to the Prosecution on November 1 this year, State Prosecutor Vesna Terzic said he should be ordered into custody because he might seek to flee.

“The Prosecution’s proposal may sound strange, but, despite the fact that the suspect came on his own, he has only now become aware of the gravity of those crimes,” Terzic said.

The Defence and suspect did not object to the motion, saying the custody measure “suits” them.

“My client came here, admitted guilt for three counts and already expressed his regrets,” said Dusko Tomic, Defence attorney for Anic.

Anic is suspected, as a member of the Maturice Special Purposes Squad with the Croatian Defence Council, HVO, of having committed war crimes against civilians and prisoners of war in Kiseljak and Vares municipalities.

Terzic said at the custody hearing that Anic had already admitted guilt for some of the crimes for which he is suspected, including, among others, the crime committed in Stupni Do village, Vares municipality.

“We must look at the frightening photographs taken in Stupni do, where houses were burnt down. Houses can be built again, but children, aged three, eight and 13, and old people were set on fire as well. Out of all burned bodies and bones we found in the village, only six belonged to people who were capable of serving in the military. The gravity of these crimes proves that he should be ordered into custody,” Terzic said.

As stated in verdicts passed down by the Hague Tribunal, HVO units occupied Stupni Do in October 1993, when more than 30 civilians were killed and the village was “almost totally destroyed in a large scale unscrupulous destruction operation”.

M.H.

This post is also available in: Bosnian (Bosnian)