It has been three years since Radovan Stankovic, sentenced by a Bosnian court to 20 years in prison for war crimes committed during the country's 1992-1995 war, escaped from Foca prison.
"The State Investigation and Protection Agency, SIPA, is still undertaking all activities under its mandate in order to locate and apprehend Radovan Stankovic. We cannot talk about the information we have gathered in this case," SIPA Spokesperson Zeljka Kujundzija said.
The Prosecution of Bosnia and Herzegovina says the search will continue until he is arrested.
The Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina views Stankovic's escape from prison on 25 May 2007 as a calamity, especially as he has not yet been brought back into custody.
"Each escape sends a bad message to victims and constitutes a major blow to the Court and Prosecution, which invests huge efforts and resources to ensure successful trials of individuals indicted for grave crimes. This practice makes our work purposeless," State Court President Meddzida Kreso told Balkan Investigative Reporting Network's Justice Report.
Radovan Stankovic was the first war-crimes indictee referred by the Hague Tribunal to the Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina for further processing.
He was found guilty, as a former member of the Miljevina Battalion with the Foca Tactical Brigade of the Republika Srpska Army, VRS, for taking part in, abetting and assisting the capture, torture, rape and murder of non-Serb civilians in the Foca area from April 1992 to February 1993.
In April 2007 Stankovic was sent to Foca Penal and Correctional Facility to serve his sentence, but he escaped when taken to the Faculty of Dentistry for a tooth x-ray.
Since his escape, some suspect that he has been hiding in Serbia.
This February, Bosnia and Serbia signed an agreement that allows for the arrest and extradition of persons who were sentenced by second instance verdict and fled to the neighbouring country. It also allows the convict to choose, if he posesses dual citizenship, where he wishes to serve his sentence. According to this agreement, if Stankovic is located he can either be extradited to Bosnia, or put in a Serbian prison.
In 2008, ten people were indicted in Sarajevo for helping Stankovic run away, including members of his family. The State Court last year pronounced a first instance verdict, sentencing Ranko Stankovic, the fugitive's brother, to two years in prison, while Ranka Dragicevic and Brankica Davidovic were sentenced to six months' imprisonment but conditionally released. Their sentence will be carried out if they commit a crime in the two years following the sentencing.
By the same verdict the remaining seven indictees were acquitted of all charges.
On several occasions the Hague Tribunal has expressed concern over Stankovic's escape and has called for him "to be returned to where he belongs".
This article is Premium Content. In order to gain access to it, please login to your account below if you are already a Premium Subscriber, or subscribe to one of our Premium Content packages.
Our Premium Service gives you access to exclusive content published on Balkan Insight, including analyses, investigations, comments, interviews and more. Subscribe to Balkan Transitional Justice Premium or to Full Premium Access and get unparalleled in-depth coverage of the Western Balkans.
If you have trouble logging in or any other questions regarding you account, please contact us