Friday, June 17, 2005

Serbian sentenced to 20 years jail for war crime

BELGRADE, June 17 (Reuters) - A Serbian court on Friday sentenced paramilitary Sasa Cvjetan to 20 years imprisonment for his part in the murder of 14 Kosovo Albanian civilians in 1999 during the NATO air war against Yugoslavia.

Cvjetan had been found guilty and given an identical sentence in March 2004, but the Supreme Court overturned the verdict because of technical omissions and ordered a re-trial.

The burly, short-haired Cvjetan, 30, was a member of the Scorpions, a paramilitary group which operated within Serb special police units in Kosovo and was active on Croatian and Bosnian territory during the 1990s Yugoslav wars.

A chilling video taken by one of the Scorpions showing members of the group murdering six Muslim men from Srebrenica in 1995 shocked the Serbian public when it was shown on television this month. It drew public condemnation and immediate arrests.

A human rights activist who uncovered the video had first learnt of its existence from one of the Scorpions who testified at Cvjetan's trial. Cvjetan said he joined the group in 1999.

Judge Biljana Sinanovic said that all the evidence presented during the trial showed that Cvjetan had, together with other members of the Scorpions, participated in the murder of women and children in Podujevo on March 28, 1999.

The case broke new ground when five children who survived the massacre came to Belgrade four years later to testify. The eldest of them picked Cvjetan out of a lineup, saying he looked familiar, but did not make a positive identification.

The re-trial was ordered because Cvjetan had withdrawn the confession he had made shortly after the massacre in 1999, insisting it was made under duress without the presence of his lawyer, and disputing a lawyer's signature on the report.


illyr jom said...

That's it? There better be capital punishment after that.

Anonymous said...

He's serving 1.42 years of prison for each of the people he killed. This is a farse.

Chris Blaku said...

You get more time in prison for selling heroin in the US.

I was reading the paper this morning about how a woman is facing 65 years in jail for fraud, and this man took 14 innocent lives off this earth, 7 of them children, and he does less than a third of the time.

Anonymous said...

Here's a chilling article of what happened

And remember, the guy was released first after the Supreme Court intervened, due to "irregularities" during the trial. Only after the Srebrenica video, did he receive this punishment again...

What a load of cr*p!
The courts in serbia are a joke. All part of the same killing machine that wreaked havoc in the Balkans, which includes the Serbian Othodox Church and the Serbian Academy with it's "Nacertanie" plan.
Only with international pressure did they sentence this animal to prison.

And they want us to be a part of that nazi state?
No way, we're done with those murderers.


Chris Blaku said...

That article was chilling, and one of many, many others that cannot even be told.

Tosi, you are 100% right... By the way, I believe that Natasa Kandic deserves a Nobel Prize for her work, which is by far, the most dangerous job in the Balkans.

By the way Tosi, I'm from Podujeve (Besiana) and was familiar with the Bogujevci family. Tragic story, but look on the bright side, Sasa Cvjetan will be out of jail in his 40's, living life. Too bad Saranda's family is not afforded that very same luxury.

The Serbian Government does not deserve praise, nor compliment for prosecuting the very scum of humanity it helped create. Of course, the world will praise them, yet I condemn them for allowing this to occur. I also condemn them for waiting until international outrage over the Srebrnica video prompted them to seek "justice" for the massacre. 20 years? If a Scorpion is capable of killing seven children in front of their mothers, they can eat 20 years for breakfast.

Give 'em the chair, or have them do 20 years with Haradinaj.

Anonymous said...

It must be even harder for you since you knew them personally.
14 victims, 7 of whom were kids. One was 1 year I think...
Only Serbs are capable of this bestiality.

And you're right, the murderer will be out in his forties, after having a cosy time in a prison where he is seen as a hero.
While the survivors will fight their entire lives with this.

The Bogujevci family should sue Serbia. Since the animal worked for the state, the state bears as much responsibility.

And Kandic should get Nobels Peace Prize, you're absolutely right.
Besides this case, she has been involved in discovering what happened at Mackatica factory in Serbia. Where the bodies of many Kosovars were burned to destroy evidence.
Like they did in the "Third Reich"...