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Convicts Describe Statements Given in Past Proceedings at Cvetkovic Trial

10. March 2015.00:00
The Bosnian state prosecution called upon Vlastimir Golijan and Zoran Goronja to testify regarding statements they gave during proceedings which had been previously brought against them by the Bosnian state court.

This post is also available in: Bosnian

Golijan and Goronja, two former members of the Tenth Reconnaissance Squad of the Army of Republika Srpska, testified twice at the Aleksandar Cvetkovic trial. They had testified in Cvektovic’s defense.

Cvektovic, also a former member of the Tenth Reconnaissance Squad, has been charged with participating in the mass killing of more than 900 men from Srebrenica in Branjevo, Zvornik, in July 1995.

Golijan and Goronoja are currently serving prison sentences for their involvement in this killing. Under a second instance verdict, Golijan was sentenced to fifteen years in prison and Goronja to thirty years in prison.

Prosecutor Dubravko Campara asked Golijan whether he wrote a statement with Rade Golic, his attorney, in March 2011. Golijan answered affirmatively, and said the statement’s contents were true and accurate. Campara then said that he wouldn’t question Golijan on the statement’s contents, since Golijan had described them sufficiently when he was questioned by the defense.

Goronja, on the other hand, said that his previous statement was not entirely true. His statement was also written with the assistance of his attorney.

Goronja said that members of the Tenth Reconnaissance Squad arrived to Branjevo in a black van, whereas his statement had said that they had been transported to the area by truck.

“Also, the statement said that Franc Kos ordered me to put up a machine gun. But the truth is that Kos and the protected witness put it up,” Goronja said.

Goronja said that this one of the versions of his statement that he wanted the defense to file during the procedure, but was rejected by the trial chamber.

Goronja said he wrote another statement while in detention, and that before today’s hearing he had given a copy of this statement to Aleksander Cvetkovic’s defense to file as material evidence.

“We will object to this evidence. This statement could have been made yesterday. We didn’t know that it existed,” Campara said.

Petko Pavlovic, Cvetkovic’s defense attorney, said that filing Goronja’s earlier statement as evidence and questioning him based on its contents was unlawful.

“The witness didn’t give his consent for this statement to be submitted to the Prosecution of Bosnia and Herzegovina,” Pavlovic said.

The trial chamber, chaired by Darko Samardzic, will consider the evidence and objections at a later stage.

The trial will continue on March 24.

Jasmina Đikoli

This post is also available in: Bosnian