Croatian arrests, Serb verdict put Scorpions under pressure

[JURIST] Croatia on Friday arrested 10 people suspected of committing war crimes against Bosnian Muslims in the 1990s. The arrests were made in eastern Croatia, an area with a large ethnic Serb population and where several former members of the Serb paramilitary group Scorpions live; they follow Monday's Croat detention of Scorpion member Slobodan Davidovic [JURIST report] following the public release of an amateur video [JURIST report] made in 1995, which proved Serbian forces participated in the war in Bosnia. Reuters has more.

Also Friday, another Scorpion member, Sasa Cvjetan [Reuters report], was sentenced by a Serbian court to 20 years in prison for a separate charge of murdering 14 Kosovo Albanians in 1999. Cvjetan was found guilty in March 2004, but the the Serbian Supreme Court overturned [IWPR report] the verdict because of technical omissions and ordered a retrial. Judge Biljana Sinanovic said the evidence presented proved that Cvjetan and members of the Scorpions had particpated in the murder of women and children in the city of Podujevo. During the trial, 5 children who survived [survivor profile] the attack testified against Cvjetan, including one who picked Cvjetan out of a lineup, saying he looked familiar.

 

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