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Zoran Krtalic, presiding judge of the Trial Chamber, said that the trial is adjourned because Nenada Gvozdic, lawyer of defendant Mate Anicic, failed to show up.
Gvozdic informed the Trial Chamber that he could not attend because he had a status conference in a “more important” case before the Mostar Municipal Court, and after that he had a hearing where which he represented “Zrinjski”.
The lawyer requested to be relived of the defender’s duty because he has not been paid his expenses so far.
“It is pointless comparing the Vranica case by its significance with any other, least of all a status conference before the Municipal Court for participation in a fight,” said Krtalic, explaining that the Vranica trial was scheduled on May 9, long before the said status conference.
When it comes to payment, Krtalic said that the lawyer was informed he would be paid after the final verdict in the Vranica case.
“There are no legal grounds to relieve Gvozdic of his duty. If he fails to show up at the main hearing, we will inform the chamber to carry out appropriate legal measures,” said Krtalic, reminding of the fact that Gvozdic personally applied for the list of court appointed lawyers.
Judge Krtalic recommended that Gvozdic be removed from the list of court-appointed lawyers because of his unprofessional conduct.
Beside Anicic, former members of the military police with the Croatian Defence Council Ivan Skutor and Erhad Poznic were charged with the crime.
The Vranica trial began in 2000, after three acquittals by the Mostar Cantonal Court which the Supreme Court of the Bosnia and Federation quashed and returned the case for retrial.
At this hearing, the trial was supposed to start for the fourth time. In the meantime, first defendant Zeljko Dzidic became unavailable to law enforcement agencies in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Lawyer of the plaintiffs also failed to appear before the court because of his obligations at the Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina.