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Koricanske stijene: Inspectors Deny Putting Pressure

6. November 2012.00:00
During the continuation of the retrial of four indictees, who are charged with crimes at Koricanske stijene, State Investigation and Protection Agency, SIPA investigators deny having out pressure on two witnesses who claimed to have been pressured when they testified at this trial.

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SIPA investigators Ejub Zukic and Mevludin Mujezinovic confirmed that they took statements from Luka Ignjatovic and Vitomir Lakic, truck drivers in a convoy of people deported from Prijedor, in 2006, while investigating crimes committed at Koricanske stijene.

“No, we put absolutely no pressure. We were not in a position to do it. At that moment we did not have information about the perpetrators,” Zukic said.

The investigators were invited to testify, because, at a hearing held on October 23 witnesses Ignjatovic and Lakic denied having seen indictee Dusan Jankovic at Koricanske stijene, claiming that they said the opposite during the investigation due to the pressure put on them by SIPA investigators.

Zukic said that his colleague Mujezinovic put questions to the witnesses, while he typed their responses. As he said, Ignjatovic was the first one who mentioned indictee Dusan Jankovic.

“One of the suspects was mentioned for the first time. It was said that he was the team leader… Dusan Jankovic. At that moment the name was absolutely unknown to us. He said that they were neighbours. (…) He said that Dusan Jankovic, a neighbour of his, led those policemen,” Zukic said.

Besides Jankovic, this crime is charged upon Zoran Babic, Milorad Skrbic and Zeljko Stojnic, former members of the Prijedor police.

Under a first instance verdict, Jankovic, former “Commander of the Police Station in Prijedor”, was sentenced to 27 years in prison, Babic and Skrbic were sentenced to 22 years each, while Stojnic was sentenced to 15 years. The Appellate Chamber revoked the verdict and ordered a retrial.

Witness Zukic said that Vitomir Lakic was examined one day after Ignjatovic, but, despite the fact that they were in the same truck, their statements were not congruous.

The two investigators said that they were willing to confront Ignjatovic and Lakic. Investigator Mujezinovic said that he was surprised to see that Ignjatovic and Lakic, who, as he said, treated him and his colleague in a correct manner, changed their statements.

“Mr. Ignjatovic mentioned his neighbour Dusan Jankovic. He said he gave orders to policemen and that he saw him during the trip. Basically, that he was present the whole time. This was the first time the first and last name of that person was mentioned,” Mujezinovic said.

He said that they did not know who the perpetrators were at that moment, so they could not have put pressure.

The trial is due to continue tomorrow, when indictee Jankovic will testify in his defence.

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This post is also available in: Bosnian