News 13 Oct 16

Belgrade Acquits Bosnian Serb Soldier of Killing Croat

Former Bosnian Serb soldier Goran Sinik was acquitted of committing a war crime by murdering a Croat civilian in Gradiska in September 1992 during the Bosnian war.

Milivoje Pantovic
BIRN
Belgrade
The High Court in Belgrade. Photo: Beta.

The High Court in Belgrade acquitted Sinik on Thursday, saying that the evidence against him was “contradictory and unreliable and the statements from witnesses were full of inconsistencies”.

The judges said that it was established that accused Sinik was in the Gradiska municipality on the eve of the killing of Croat civilian Marjan Vistica and that he was seen with the victim in a car with two other, unidentified people.

But the court said there was no hard evidence that Sinik committed the murder, or even about how the murder was carried out.

“The court did not establish that the accused, Goran Sinik, did commit the murder of Marjan Vistica as the prosecution claimed,” it said.

The prosecution alleged that on September 2, 1992, near a bridge over the Sava river, Sinik took Vistica out of a bus, drove with him to Bok Jankovac near Gradiska and murdered him at a municipal dump.

Sinik, who was not present at the reading of the judgement for health reasons, had denied during the trial that he killed Vistica or that he even knew him.

However, after the killing of Vistica, Sinik moved in to the victim’s apartment.

In accordance with the verdict, the court also decided that the costs of the trial would be paid by the state.

The verdict can be appealed.

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