Crime in Sremska Mitrovica and Vukovar (defendant Žarko Amidžić)

Trials in Croatia :: legally valid and final verdict

Trial against Žarko Amidžić for criminal offence of war crime against prisoners of war, stated in Article 122 of the OKZ RH and criminal offence of murder, stated in Article 91, Paragraph 1, Item 3 of the Penal Law.

INDICTMENT

On 06 April 1998 and 03 February 2000, the Vukovar County State Attorney’s Office issued the indictment No:DO-K-8/98, which was amended on 16 May 2000 in order to make the indictment more clear and precise, and which charged Žarko Amidžić with commission of the criminal offence of murder stated in Article 91, Paragraph 1, Item 3 of the Penal Law, and with commission of the criminal offence of war crime against prisoners of war stated in Article 122 of the OKZ RH.

GENERAL DATA

Vukovar County Court

Case No: K-34/98

War Crimes Council (judges’ panel): judge Nikola Bešenski, Council President; judge Berislav Matanović, Council member; lay judges Marijan Bataković, Mato Lasić and Marko Lukić, Council members

Accused person/Defendant: Žarko Amidžić, present at the trial

Defence Counsel:VojislavOre, lawyer from Vukovar

VERDICT (SUMMARY)

On 01 June 2000, the trial chamber of the Vukovar County Court passed the verdict No:K-34/98 which found Žarko Amidžić guilty for conducting interrogation and physical abuse by battering the civilians and the captured members of the (Croatian) National Guard Corps detained at the POW detention camp in Sremska Mitrovica (Republic of Serbia) in January 1992 and February 1992. The following (Croatian) National Guard Corps members – Frano Kožul, Hrvoje Mađarević, Ivan Marić, Ivan Boras and Pavo Sabljak were among the captives who were battered by a rubber baton. The accused Amidžić was sentenced to 7 years in prison.

By the same verdict, Amidžić was acquitted of charges that, on a non-defined date in January 1998, he had planted a tripwire anti-personnel mine in a yard of the house owned by Andrija Gašpar in Vukovar, which had been activated by Andrija Gašpar himself when entering the yard on 21 January 1998 and which had inflicted serious injuries and life-threatening wounds on Gašpar that had led to Andrija Gašpar’s death on 29 January 1998, whereas Ksenija Gašpar, Tomislav Gašpar and Zdenka Đuranić had suffered light bodily injuries, and that Žarko Amidžić had thus committed the criminal offence of murder stated in Article 91, Paragraph 1, Item 3 of the Penal Law.

In its judgment No:IKž-487/00-3 dated on 06 September 2000, the Supreme Court of the Republic of Croatia dismissed the appeals lodged by the County State Attorney and the accused Žarko Amidžić as unfounded and upheld the first-instance court verdict.