The former member of the Croatian Defence Council HVO Marko Radic was acquitted yesterday by the County Court of Zagreb of war crimes against prisoners of war from the Army of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina ARBiH in May 1993 near Uskoplje.
According to the indictment, members of the HVO captured two members of ARBiH, Resad Karahodzic and Bajro Gudic during the armed conflict with the units of ARBiH, at the end of May 1993 in the area of Uskoplje Gornji Vakuf, and the latter was killed by the passenger of the HVO van in which the two prisoners were transported.
The judge said that it was a terrible crime and then acquitted Radic of crimes.
Judge Tamara Plese pointed out that it was a terrible war crime, but she emphasized that the court cannot agree with the statement that anyone is responsible for a war crime or any other crime.
The judge said that the evidence does not show that the identity of the perpetrator has been established and that the only direct witness to the event was Karahodzic, who did not mention the identity of the perpetrator in all three statements.
Judges: Verdicts are made on the basis of evidence.
On the same day when the crime was committed, Karahodzic said the perpetrator was someone called Marica. The judge said that the defendants nickname is Macaro or Makaro, so even the gender of the nickname did not make sense. She added that the identity of the perpetrator can't be deduced based on this, because two other names were mentioned during the proceedings, and those persons were not charged.
Judge Plese added that Karahodzic testified that Gudic's father found out the identity of the perpetrators and that he asked Karahodzic to confirm it, which he refused because he did not know their identity.
The judge concluded that Radic is the perpetrator, and there is no evidence from which it would appear without any doubt that he is the perpetrator.