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ICTY reduces former Serb leader's sentence

[JURIST] The appellate chamber of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) [official website] on Tuesday partially reversed the conviction and reduced the sentence [judgment summary, PDF; press release] of former Bosnian Serb parliamentary leader Momcilo Krajisnik [ICTY materials; JURIST news archive] from 27 to 20 years. Krajisnik was initially convicted [judgment, PDF; JURIST report] in 2006 on charges of persecution, extermination, murder, deportation, and forced transfer of non-Serb civilians during the 1992-1995 Bosnian conflict. The appellate chamber affirmed the trial chamber's ruling that Krajisnik had the intent to engage in deportation, forced transfer, and persecution of non-Serbs. It went on to hold that the trial chamber did not have any evidence that he intended to engage in crimes of murder and extermination and overturned the convictions for expanded crimes of murder, extermination, and persecution with the exception of the underlying acts of deportation and forcible transfer.

At Krajisnik's 2006 trial, the ICTY found him not guilty on a charge of genocide for which prosecutors had requested a life sentence [JURIST report]. He was instead sentenced to 27 years imprisonment. Krajisnik was initially indicted together with Biljana Plavsic [ICTY materials; JURIST news archive], the former Bosnian Serb president, who was sentenced to 11 years in prison in 2003 after testifying against Krajisnik. Former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic [ICTY materials; JURIST news archive], with whom Krajisnik worked closely, was arrested last year [JURIST report] and currently faces war crimes charges before the ICTY.

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