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Former Bosnian Croat soldier gets 20 jail sentence at The Hague

[JURIST] The International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia [official website] on Wednesday sentenced Miroslav Bralo [ICTY case backgrounder], a former Bosnian Croat soldier, to 20 years in jail. Bralo pleaded guilty [JURIST report] to murder, rape and torture charges stemming from the 1993 Bosnian war. He had initially pleaded not guilty [JURIST report], but later changed his plea [plea agreement, PDF] and ICTY Judge Iain Bonomy said this move, along with Bralo's remorse and voluntary surrender to the war crimes tribunal, served as a mitigating factor reducing Bralo's sentence from a possible 25 years. Bralo belonged to a special Bosnian Croat force known as the Jokers that attacked Muslim villages in central Bosnia during the 1993 conflict and subsequently imprisoned and tortured civilians. Read the court's full sentencing judgment and a summary of the ruling. The ICTY also has a press release. Reuters has more.

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