News 19 Dec 14

Kosovo ‘Drenica Group’ Guerrillas Released on Bail

Six defendants in the high-profile ‘Drenica Group’ trial of former Kosovo Liberation Army fighters, accused of war crimes for abusing civilian prisoners, have been released on bail.

Behar Mustafa, Petrit Collaku
BIRN
Pristina
Sami Lushtaku, one of the defendants bailed.

The six war crimes defendants, including Sylejman Selimi, Pristina’s ambassador to Tirana and the former Kosovo security forces commander, and Sami Lushtaku, the mayor of Skenderaj/Srbice, were released on bail by the court in Mitrovica on Friday.

“My request is approved. The court has adopted the same for the others,” Lushtaku’s lawyer Arianit Koci told BIRN.

Lushtaku paid 50,000 euro as a bail security, the lawyer said. Two other defendants, Isni Thaci and Zeqir Demaku paid 20,000 euro in bail. It was not immediately clear how much the other suspects paid.

Some of the defendants in the high-profile trial have been in custody on remand for 19 months.

They have all pleaded not guilty to torturing and mistreating civilian prisoners held at the KLA’s Likovc/Likovac detention centre in 1998.

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