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Trial of Avdovic and Vintila Begins Anew

30. September 2014.00:00
The trial of Ramiz Avdovic and Iulian-Nicolae Vintila for crimes in Sarajevo is due to begin anew due to a change in the composition of the Trial Chamber.

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“Judge Ljubomir Kitic, who was member of the Chamber, is sick. Halil Lagumdzija is a new Trial Camber member. Despite the fact that we have nearly come to the end of the trial, we shall have to begin the main trial anew,” said Trial Chamber Chairwoman Zeljka Marenic.

When asked by judge Marenic whether the parties agreed with a proposal to use the evidence that had been presented previously, Prosecutor Dzevad Muradbegovic said that he agreed, but the Defence proposed that a status conference be held.

“I think we have to introduce a little bit of sense into this situation. I propose that a status conference be held in order for the Defence to tell the new judge what he should pay attention to and what is important for the Defence. In that way we shall sublimate the evidence, because we cannot expect the respected judge to familiarise himself with the evidence in 15 minutes,” said Vlado Adamovic, Defence attorney of indictee Vintila.

The status conference is scheduled for October 14.  

The trial in this case began in March 2012. Vintila and Avdovic are charged with crimes in the “Viktor Bubanj” military barracks and on the fifth floor of the District Prison in Sarajevo. 

The Prosecution of BiH considers that Serb civilians, who were detained in these buildings, were subjected to suffering and torture and used for performing forced labour.

The indictment alleges that Avdovic was Commander of Guards on the fifth floor of the District Prison in Sarajevo and former “Viktor Bubanj” military barracks, while Vintila was a cook and guard in the former barracks.  

When asked about prohibiting measures by judge Marenic, the Prosecution requested extension of prohibiting measures, because “the circumstances have not changed.”  

Mirza Kovac, Defence attorney of Ramiz Avdovic, said that “the prohibiting measures make no sense, because we are at the end of the trial”.  

Defence attorney Adamovic said that “explanations of prohibiting measures are being copied all the time”.

“I consider that, after having regularly attended hearings for three years, these men should no longer be obliged to report to police. Take away their passports, but terminate the obligation to report to police. You just incur additional expenditures to them,” Adamovic explained.

Mirna Buljugić

This post is also available in: Bosnian