Monday, January 7, 2008


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (January 7,2008) – The Bosnian State Prosecutor has asked the Bosnian State Court to order a two-month custody extension for Serbian war criminal Vinko Kondic, who is considered to have committed war crimes against Bosnian civilians,during the 1992-1995 Serbian aggression against Bosnia.

The Prosecution has filed the request in order to examine the remaining witnesses and complete its investigation. Serbian war criminalt's defence attorney has filed an objection. The Bosnian State Court will render its decision at a later stage.

Prior to his arrest,Kondic acted as defence attorney of Serbian war criminal Momcilo Gruban, who is indicted, before the Bosnian State Court for crimes committed against Bosnian civilians in Omarska and Keraterm concentration camps.

Serbian war criminal Vinko Kondic is considered to have planned and executed the deportation of the Bosnian population from the Bosnian town of Kljuc in 1992,during the genocidal Serbian aggression against Bosnia.

"We would like to examine all witnesses who were subordinates of the suspect and who were not victims of the crimes. There is a justified fear that Kondic would try to influence the witnesses and accessories should he remain at large," said the Bosnian State Prosecutor Dzemila Begovic, citing the possibility that the indictee might attempt to escape as yet another reason for the custody extension request.

"In 2005, Kondic applied for citizenship of Serbia. In that same year, the Bosnian State Prosecutior took over his case from the Cantonal Prosecutor's Office in Bihac," explained Begovic, adding that this was not done "without a reason" and that there was a possibility that the indictee would try to escape from Bosnia to Serbia.

Dusko Panic, Serbian war criminal Vinko Kondic's defence attorney, denied the prosecution's allegations concerning the possibility that his client might try to escape. He said that Kondic applied for Serbian citizenship "in order to get certain benefits", just like most other "members of the Serbian population" living in Bosnia.

"That is neither a bad thing nor does it indicate that he might try to escape. In any case, he cannot get citizenship in his current situation. Therefore, this cannot be considered as a reason for custody extension," said Panic, suggesting that the court pronounce some less severe measures against Kondic.

Explaining his objection against the Prosecution's motion, Panic mentioned Kondic's "bad health condition", pointing out that he has Parkinson's Disease, which was also confirmed by the suspect.

"The amount of medications I take has been increased for 50 per cent. Sometimes, I take 15 different medications per day and this can in no way do any good to me. I would like to ask you to approve a more detailed medical examination, as I might have to come to one of the future hearings in a wheelchair," said Serbian war criminal Vinko Kondic, adding that he "manages to survive the days" in the Detention Unit in Doboj "only due to unselfish kindness and care provided by the unit staff".

Serbian war criminal Vinko Kondic was arrested in Bosnia on December 6, 2007. He has been held in custody since then.

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