Bosnian court releases alleged Tuzla war criminal

Court in Bosnia-Herzegovina overturns conviction of alleged war criminal who complained he was not judged under Yugoslav law.

Bosnian court releases alleged Tuzla war criminal

World Bulletin / News Desk

Bosnia's Constitutional Court on Friday overturned the conviction of former army of Republika Srpska Commander Novak Djukić, who had been sentenced to 25 years in prison for war crimes, according to Djokovic's lawyer.

Dusan Tomic said he expected Djukić to be released Friday or Monday. But the mother of a young man killed in an attack Tomic ordered, called the ruling a disgrace.

On May 25, 1995, Djukić ordered his army to shell the city of Tuzla in central Bosnia. Seventy-one people were killed and more than 150 civilians were injured.

He was arrested in Banja Luka in 2007 and sentenced two years later by the Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

In his appeal, Djukić contended that his right to a fair trial had been violated because he was judged under the criminal law of Bosnia and Herzegovina instead of the the law of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, which was applicable at the time of the shelling.

Bosnia's high court accepted that argument.

Officials from the lower court said Friday that they were disappointed with the the decision but had no further comment.

Nura Alispahic, the mother of Admir Alispahic, who was 24 years old when he was killed in Tuzla on May 25, 1995, told The Anodolu Agency that she was disappointed by the decision.

"There was no justice and there will never be." Alispahic said. "They do whatever they want. This is disgrace. I wonder how they do not fear God.".

In the last three months the constitutional court has released ten convicted war criminals on the same basis.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 26 Ocak 2014, 13:30