By Nevena Šarenac – Sarajevo
Šemsudin Mehmedović, member of BiH Parliament and a member of the SDA, was arrested this morning in Sarajevo on suspicion of committing war crimes against the Serbian population in the territory of Tešanj, announced by the officials of the State Agency for Investigation and Protection (SIPA) at today’s press conference.
“At the end of 2009 SIPA received an order from the Prosecution office of BiH relating to the determination of all relevant facts linked to the unlawful arrest, detention and physical and psychological abuse of Serbian civilians in the municipality of Tešanj from members of the Public Safety Station Tešanj in the period from spring 1992 until autumn 1993 “, confirmed for reporters the police officer of SIPA Kristina Jozić.
SIPA, then formed a special operations team with a code name “Ozren” which in the past 10 months of investigation gathered evidence from which derives a reasonable doubt that the members of the Public Safety Tešanj, on the orders of former director of the station, made this criminal act.
“After the retention of Serbian civilians in the police station in Tešanj and extortion testimony, some of Serbs from Tešanj are convicted on sentence of imprisoning of up to 12 years,” said Jozić
Mehmedović is charged with obstruction of justice in operation, for allegedly interfering with the witnesses.
“SIPA during working on this case documented the influence on the witnesses and revealed threats addressed to the witnesses, and to investigators of SIPA, who worked on this case and from the persons deprived of their liberty, in order to disrupt further investigation”, said Jozić, adding that SIPA also has information that there were lists for the liquidation of certain persons.
SIPA will send a report with evidence for both crimes to BiH Prosecutor’s Office.
As Jozić said, they asked from the Prosecution Office for the verbal consent to search buildings and property, but they did not get it. She pointed out that since 2009 when they received an order from prosecution office to investigate this case, to establish the facts and to gather evidences; they had no further support from this institution.
“Based on the available information of SIPA and the relation of the prosecution office under this case, there are certain types of obstruction of prosecution when it comes to working on this case. At this point, based on the available information, the prosecution and the chief prosecutor did not provide support for this case. SIPA will propose to the Court of BiH a proposal for the detention of Š.M. based on the obtained evidence, and since there is a reasonable doubt for custody on the grounds of Article 132 of the Criminal Procedure. We expect that the Prosecution of BiH in accordance with its responsibilities on the basis of the evidences and findings related to the case, the Court would submit a proposal to establish custody and confirm its position that in BiH there are no untouchables person “, added Jozić.
Mehmedović lawyer Senka Nožica said that her client will be detained for 24 hours, and then will be transferred to the Prosecution of BiH.
“I have no information about reasonable doubts, and for what he is charged with. He did not expect that this will happen, but he has enough power to pass all of this and to prove that everything was a process without base”, stated Nožica.
Besides, Mehmedović, in investigation there are included three more persons who are not detained.