Crime in Slunj and surrounding villages

On 1 December 2009 at the Karlovac County Court, the defendant Mićo Cekinović was found guilty of committing a war crime against civilians referred to in Article 120, paragraph 1 of the Basic Criminal Law of the RoC (hereinafter: the OKZ RH). He was sentenced to one year in prison.

The Supreme Court quashed the Karlovac County Court’s Verdict.
In the repeated trial, the Karlovac County Court’s War Crimes Council found on 4 May 2010 the defendant Cekinović guilty and sentenced him to 4 years in prison.
The session of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Croatia was held on 27 October 2010. The Supreme Court quashed the first instance verdict.

After the third (second repeated) hearing held on 23 December 2011, the Rijeka County Court’s War Crimes Council found the defendant guilty and sentenced him to 4 years in prison.

The VSRH Appeals Chamber held its session on 30 January 2013. It confirmed the first-instance verdict.

INDICTMENT (SUMMARY)

The indictment issued by the Karlovac County State’s Attorney’s Office (hereinafter: the ŽDO) charged the defendant that in November 1991, as commander of a group of “Primišlje Territorial Defence” which was within the composition of the “SAO Krajina” paramilitary, in the area of the City of Slunj and surrounding villages, contrary to the provisions of international conventions, permitted and ordered deprivation of liberty of inhabitants of Croatian ethnicity, their physical abuse and killing, as well as setting on fire and destruction of buildings. In compliance with that, members of his unit arrested one person, beat him up and detained him without any legal grounds, while another civilian was killed and his house was set on fire and the majority of population of Croatian ethnicity were expelled from their homes.

He was charged that, by doing so, he had committed a war crime against civilians referred to in Article 120, paragraph 1 of the OKZ RH.

You can read the indictment here. (in Croatian)
GENERAL DATA

Karlovac County Court

War Crimes Council: Judge Ante Ujević, Council President, Judge Alenka Laptalo, Council member, Judge Juraj Dujam, Council member

War Crimes Council in the third (second repeated) trial: Judge Dušan Šporčić, Council President, Judge Dubravka Rudelić, Council member, Judge Milka Vraneš, Council member

Rijeka County Court

War Crimes Council in the third (second repeated) trial – Rijeka County Court: Judge Ika Šarić, Council President, Judge Zoran Sršen, Council member, Judge Valentin Ivanetić, Council member

File number: K-17/09

Indictment: issued by the Karlovac County State’s Attorney’s Office No. KT-36/95 of 30 July 2009, modifield at the main hearing held on 4 May 2010 and 4 October 2011.

Criminal act: war crime against civilians referred to in Article 120 of the OKZ RH

Prosecuting attorney: Karlovac County State’s Attorney’s Office represented by Zdravko Car, Deputy County State’s Attorney; Rijeka County State’s Attorney’s Office represented by Doris Hrast, Deputy County State’s Attorney

Defendant: Mićo Cekinović, in detention since 6 July 2009

Defence counsel: Luka Šušak, a lawyer practising in Zagreb

Victims: Pavo Ivšić (killed), Tomo Kos i Milan Kos (detained, beaten up)
MONITORING REPORTS

SLUNJ AND SURROUNDING VILLAGES – reports (in Croatian)

SLUNJ I OKOLNA MJESTA – reports on the repeated trial
VERDICT

On 1 December 2009, the War Crimes Council of the Karlovac County Court passed a verdict in which the defendant Mićo Cekinović was found guilty. By applying the provisions on reducing a sentence due to particular mitigating circumstances, he was sentenced to one year in prison.

The 1 December 2009 Verdict of the Karlovac County Court, see here. (in Croatian)

The Supreme Court’s public session was held on 24 March 2010. See the Session’s report here (in Croatian). The Karlovac County Court’s verdict was quashed and the case was reversed for a re-trial.

The quashing decision issued by the Supreme Court, see here. (in Croatian)

Having conducted the re-trial, on 4 May 2010 the War Crimes Council of the Karlovac County Court found the defendant Cekinović guilty and sentenced him to 4 years in prison.

The session of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Croatia was held on 27 October 2010. The Supreme Court quashed the first instance verdict.

After the third (second repeated) hearing held on 23 December 2011, the Rijeka County Court’s War Crimes Council found the defendant guilty and sentenced him to 4 years in prison.

The VSRH Appeals Chamber held its session on 30 January 2013. It confirmed the first-instance verdict.