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Bosnian Serb Fighter Jailed for Illegal Detentions

6. August 2015.00:00
Former army unit commander Milun Kornjaca was sentenced to seven years in prison for ordering the illegal capture and detention of Bosniak civilians in the Cajnice area in 1992.

This post is also available in: Bosnian

The Bosnian state court’s appeals chamber on Thursday found Kornjaca, the former commander of the Plavi Orlovi (Blue Eagles) unit of the Bosnian Serb Army, guilty of ordering the illegal capture of Bosniak civilians from the village of Brdo and their detention in Mostina in the Cajnice municipality in May 1992.

“The defendant personally ordered the detention of the civilians, which was proven beyond doubt,” said presiding judge Mirza Jusufovic.

But Kornjaca was cleared of charges that he allowed the killings of civilians in a hunters’ lodge in Mostina on May 19, 1992.

The appeals chamber explained that Kornjaca was cleared because it could not be established whether Veljo Tadic – who killed the captives – was a member of the defendant’s unit.

“It was proven beyond doubt that Bosniak civilians were killed in Mostina and that the crime was committed by Tadic; however the judges could not conclude whether Kornjaca was his commander at the time,” said Jusufovic.

Kornjaca was given five years in prison for the crimes against the Brdo civilians, but his overall sentence was set at seven years because in May 2014 he was also found guilty of ordering the detention and abuse of civilians in Mostina.

He was given five years in prison for that crime, but the appeals chamber set the total sentence at seven years.

When determining the length of the sentence, Jusufovic said the judges looked at mitigating factors such as the poor health of the defendant and the fact that he had limited ability to tell right from wrong at the time because of alcohol abuse and illness.

Kornjaca did not attend the sentencing hearing. His lawyer Rade Golic told BIRN that he had information that the former fighter is in hospital.

Albina Sorguč

This post is also available in: Bosnian