Crime in Bijela

On 11 October 2010, War Crimes Council of the Bjelovar County Court reached a verdict in the trial against Dragomir Ćasić: The Court acquitted the defendant of the charge because it was not proven in his case that he committed a war crime against civilians under Article 120, paragraph 1 of the OKZRH.
INDICTMENT (SUMMARY)

The Indictment No. KT-49/94 of 12 June 1997 was issued by the Bjelovar County State Attorney’s Office against 28 accused persons.

According to the Indictment, Dragomir Ćasić – the 19th defendant, is charged with a war crime against war prisoners: that he, in his capacity as member of paramilitary unit of the so called “Territorial Defence of Western Slavonia”, together with Žarković Krsto, Banjeglav Ljubomir, Šopalović Milan, Majić Nenad, Kulić Sreten, Zorić Miodrag, Pavković Vasilije, Kuridža Petar, Tomić Boro, Glumac Rajko and Romanić Milan, apprehended police members (Starešinić Zlatko, Petrovecki Darko, Rambousek Damir and Petrovečki Marijan) in Daruvar in the night of 18/19 August 1991. The defendants took the mentioned police members to the prison in the village of Bijela where they were tortured and abused, and after that transferred to the prison in Bučje where Petrovicki Darko, Rambousek Damir and Petrovečki Marijan disappeared without a trace and therefore presumed killed.

The Indictment can be viewed (in Croatian language) here.

According to the Indictment No. K-DO-29/10 issued by the Bjelovar County State Attorney’s Office on 06 August 2010, Dragomir Ćasić is charged that he, together with other mentioned persons, unlawfully took into custody the citizens of the Republic of Croatia Starešinić Zlatko, Petrovicki Darko, Rambousek Damir and Petrovečki Marijan, and took them to the Chetnik prison in Bijela where they were tortured and abused; several days later they were transferred to the central prison in Bučje where Petrovicki Darko, Rambousek Damir and Petrovečki Marijan disappeared without a trace and therefore are presumed killed. Thus, he committed a war crime against civilians.
GENERAL INFORMATION

Bjelovar County Court

Case file number: K-6/2010

War Crimes Council (panel): Sandra Hančić, President of the Council, Mladen Piškorec and Antonija Bagarić, Council members

Indictment: No. K-DO-29/10 issued by the Bjelovar County State Attorney’s Office on 6 August 2010

Representing the prosecution: Branka Merzić, Bjelovar County State Attorney

Criminal offence: war crime against civilians under Article 120, paragraph 1 of the OKZRH

Defendant: Dragomir Ćasić (arrested at the Bajakovo border crossing on 1 August 2010, in detention until the pronouncement of the first-instance verdict of acquittal on 11 October 2010)

Defence: Krešimir Papac and Krunoslav Kunštić, lawyers practicing in Koprivnica

Victims:

taken into a detention camp, tortured and abused, missing: Darko Petrovicki, Damir Rambousek and Marijan Petrovečki;

taken into a detention camp, tortured and abused: Zlatko Starešinić
TRIAL MONITORING REPORTS

BIJELA trial monitoring reports (available in Croatian language)
VERDICT

On 11 October 2010, War Crimes Council of the Bjelovar County Court reached a verdict in which the panel acquitted the defendant Dragomir Ćasić because it was not proven in his case that he committed the crime as charged.