Gajic: Seven Years Imprisonment

17. June 2011.15:52
The Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina sentences Pavle Gajic to seven years imprisonment for crimes against prisoners of war in Bihac.

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After accepting a plea agreement, the State Court sentenced Pavle Gajic to seven years in prison for the murder of Nedzad Dizdarevic in Sokolac, Bihac municipality. The victim was 20 years old.

Under the agreement, Pavle Gajic acknowledged guilt for killing Dizdarevic with a bayonet in November 1994, while he was a member of the “Eagles of Grmec” Reconnaissance Squad of the Republika Srpska Army, VRS.

The agreement suggested between five and eight years imprisonment, and the Council of Judges decided on seven years.

“The material evidence and witness testimony presented by the Prosecution was sufficient to conclude that the accused participated in the conflict and took the life of the victim in a most brutal manner with direct intention,” said the Presiding Judge Vesna Jesenkovic.

Material evidence presented by Prosecutor Dragan Corlija included a video recording of the slaying that was recently broadcast.

When the agreement was presented to the Court, State Prosecutor Dragan Corlija said that he had spoken to the victim’s family, who expressed their understanding and support for the agreement.

Judge Jesenkovic said that Gajic’s apology, included in the agreement, was a mitigating circumstance when it came to the sentence.

“The Court considers that Pavle Gajic was willing to admit his guilt and apologise to the Dizdarevic family as a positive step towards his rehabilitation, and move towards his re-integration”, said Jesenkovic.

The verdict further considered Gajic’s health and family situation as mitigating factors. “The accused is an invalid, and he is married with two children,” said Jesenkovic. “Considering this, seven years is the most suitable sentence.”

The period that Gajic has spent in custody since December 2010 will count toward this sentence. The State Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina will subsume the cost of the trial, which began on May 17 of this year.

Jasmina Đikoli

This post is also available in: Bosnian