Bosnia court convicts Serbian war crimes suspect of crimes against humanity

[JURIST] The Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina [official website] Monday convicted Marko Boskic [press release] of committing crimes against humanity [BiH Criminal Code Article 172 text, PDF] in the 1995 Srebrenica massacre [JURIST news archive]. The conviction comes after Boskic confessed to his role in the massacre, where 1,200 unarmed prisoners of war were killed, accepting a plea agreement with the BiH Prosecutor's Office [official website]. Under the plea deal, Boskic was sentenced to 10 years in prison by the court, the lowest sentence he could have received for the charges, in return for his cooperation with prosecutors. In explaining the decision to seek only the 10-year sentence, the prosecutor emphasized the usefulness of the information [press release] Boskic provided, and his remorse, stating that the prosecutor

bore in mind that the accused[,] ... while in detention in the USA, admitted his guilt and expressed his remorse. The accused stated that he was aware of the crimes he committed and the suffering he caused, and that he must be punished for his actions. Moreover, the accused ... did not seek extradition to Croatia; he holds Croatian citizenship and would thus become unavailable to [Bosnia and Herzegovina's (BiH)] judicial authorities. Instead, he expressed his wish to be deported to BiH, to admit his guilt for the crimes charged and to be punished for the crimes that he had committed.
Boskic was extradited to BiH from the US in April after a 2006 US court ruling sentencing him to 63 months [JURIST reports] in prison for failing to reveal his role in the massacre while seeking refugee status in the US, where he briefly worked in the construction industry.

Boskic was charged [JURIST report] in August 2004 with five counts of making false declarations on US immigration applications and in an interview with federal agents. He pleaded not guilty [JURIST report], claiming he had been held in a Serbian prison camp and threatened with a gun to his head if he did not take part in the killings. He was convicted in July on two counts of concealing his military record. Boskic was first arrested [Boston Globe report] in the US in 2004, when immigration officials charged him with fraud and misuse of a visa for not reporting his foreign military service.

 

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.