SARAJEVO, Bosnia (September 29,2008) - Accepting the guilt admission agreement, the Bosnian State Court pronounced a verdict today, sentencing Croatian war criminal Slavko Sakic, former member of the Croatian fascist aggressor's formations, to eight and a half years' imprisonment.
Croatian war criminal Slavko Sakic was arrested in the southwestern Bosnian town of Livno by members of the Bosnian State Investigation and Protection Agency (SIPA) on May 19 this year. He has been held under custody since then. The time he has spent in custody will be calculated towards his sentence.
Although Croatian fascist originally pleaded not guilty, he reached an agreement with the Bosnian State Prosecution on September 5, admitting guilt for crimes described in the four counts of the indictment.
The indictment states that, in July 1993 he committed war crimes against Bosnian civilians in the Bosnian town Bugojno,during the Ceoatian aggression against Bosnia.
Croatian war criminal Slavko Sakic participated in detention and abuse of Bosnian civilians in "Akvarijum" hotel in Vrbanja settlement. It is further stated that, acting in cooperation with other Croatian fascist aggressor's soldiers, he caused numerous bodily injuries to detained Bosnian civilians, performing particularly severe torture of a group of Bosnian civilians, consisting, among others, of some old men, by carving a cross on their palms, after having injured them.
The indictment states that Croatian war criminal slavko Sakic participated in abuse and murder of one Bosnian civilian and took the detainees to the front lines to perform forced labour. Some Bosnian civilians were wounded on those occasions.
Trial Chamber Chairwoman Jasminka Kosovic explained that the law foresees ten or more years' imprisonment for perpetrators of such crimes, adding that the Chamber has taken into consideration the fact that "the indictee has admitted the crimes, he has no previous criminal record, he is a father of three minors and he was adult, but still very young, when the crimes were committed".
It was also said that Croatian war criminal Slavko Sakichad signed an agreement, in which he expressed his regret for the crimes he had committed. The mentioned agreement has still not been made available to the public.
The guilt admission agreement states that the Bosnian State Court can sentence him to between seven and ten years' imprisonment.Despite the fact that Croatian war criminal Slavko Sakic agreed, in the guilt admission agreement between him and the Prosecution, to pay for the costs of this trial, the Chamber determined that, due to his poor financial situation, he would not have to cover the trial costs, which would be paid from the budget.