At the trial of Oliver Krsmanovic for war crimes in Visegrad in 1992, a witness said that his group of fighters committed the ‘greatest evil’ in the town.
Prosecution witnesses told the court in Sarajevo on Tuesday that Krsmanovic, accused of being part of a notorious militia led by convicted war criminal Milan Lukic, often abused prisoners who were being held at the Uzamnica barracks near the eastern Bosnian town of Visegrad.
“I know that Milan’s group was responsible for the greatest evil in Visegrad. No one dared oppose them,” said witness Gojko Vidakovic in his deposition originally made to Bosnia’s State Investigation and Protection Agency in 2007.
He named several people including Krsmanovic as members of Lukic’s group.
Lukic, leader of the White Eagles paramilitary unit, which was also known as the Avengers, was sentenced to life in jail by the Hague Tribunal for crimes committed in Visegrad.
Krsmanovic is charged, as a member of the Second Podrinje Light Infantry Brigade of the Army of Republika Srpska, with participating in the murder, rape and abuse of Bosniaks in Visegrad.
The other prosecution witness, Saban Muratagic, who made his deposition in 2007 but has since died, said that in June 1992 he was detained at the Uzamnica barracks where Lukic, Krsmanovic and others came “every other or third night” to abuse prisoners.
“They beat us with fists, kicked us and used batons... On August 2, Milan [Lukic] came with his group and took 70 prisoners. Their fate remains unknown to this very day,” said Muratagic.
Krsmanovic’s lawyer Slavisa Prodanovic said he would have liked to have asked the deceased Muratagic whether he would stick by his claims if confronted with statements from prisoners who were beaten in Uzamnica but never mentioned the defendant.
The trial will resume on January 22.