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Defence Claims Non-Violent Person, Prosecutions Says Selfish Act

17. December 2013.00:00
After the quashing of the second instance verdict, the prosecution requested that Zrinko Pincic be sentenced to a more than nine years of prison, while the defence believed he should be acquitted or receive a lower sentence.

This post is also available in: Bosnian

Pincic was sentenced by a second instance verdict to nine years of prison for rape committed in Konjic in 1992 and 1993. Implementing the decision by the European Court of Human Rights, the Constitutional Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina quashed the verdict due to the wrongful implementation of the law.

After that, the trial of Pincic was returned to the stage where appeals to the first instance verdict were being heard.
In the explanation of the appeal, the prosecutor, Stanko Blagic, asked for a harsher sentence for the defendant because there were numerous aggravating circumstances.

“The forbidden acts were being carried out over a protracted period of time – from November 1992 to March 1993. Pincic acted with premeditation, which is, in our opinion, an extremely aggravating circumstance. This is a selfish act, aimed at satisfying personal urges”, said Blagic.

The lawyer, Velimir Maric, said that Pincic should be released or his sentence “considerably reduced” because of the implementation of the law of the Socialist Federative Republic of Yugoslavia. The lawyer said that testimonies from witnesses for the defence confirmed that the defendant and female plaintiff were “in a harmonious relationship based on mutual consent”.

“Even the wife of the defendant confirmed he was not a violent person and that she knew he had an affair with plaintiff who was willingly participating,” said Maric.

Under a verdict from 2008, Pincic, as member of the Croatian Defence Council, was found guilty of coming armed between November 1992 and March 1993 to the house in which Serb civilians were held prisoners, and taking a female person from there and forcing her into sexual intercourse.

The verdict was confirmed by the Appeals Chamber of the Court in December 2009. Pincic was serving his sentence, but the Constitutional Court last month quashed the verdict, concluding that his rights were violated by the implementation of the Criminal Code of Bosnia and Herzegovina, instead of the Criminal Code of former Yugoslavia which was in effect at the time the acts were committed.

The lawyer added that there were no aggravating circumstances for Pincic, but that there were exceptional extenuating circumstances since he had three surgeries in the last two years.

Pincic addressed the Appeals Chamber saying he was innocent and that he hoped the injustice would be corrected.

“I was in a relationship with the plaintiff for two months, until my wife found out about it. I have never gotten into argument with anyone. I was with her, we had intercourse, I slept over at her place for days, everyone knew about it, but I was not violent,” said Pincic.

The Appeals Chamber will make a decision at a later date.

Denis Džidić

This post is also available in: Bosnian