The Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina has confirmed the first instance verdict by which Novak Djukic was sentenced to 25 yearsâ€™ imprisonment for the shelling of Tuzla in May 1995.
The Appellate Chamber of the State Court rejected the appeals filed by the Prosecution of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Novak Djukicâ€™s Defence, saying they were groundless, and confirmed the first instance verdict in its entirety.
By the first instance verdict, pronounced in June 2009, Djukic was pronounced guilty, as Commander of the Ozren Tactical Group with the Republika Srpska Army, VRS, of having ordered the shelling of Tuzla from 130mm cannons on May 25, 1995, when 71 people were killed and more than 150 people were wounded at Kapija in Tuzla.
By the same verdict Djukic was acquitted of the charges that he ordered another shelling of Tuzla three days later.
The Prosecution of Bosnia and Herzegovina appealed the criminal and legal sanctions pronounced by the first instance verdict, as well as the decision about the criminal proceedings costs, calling on the Court to pronounce a longer sentence against Djukic and have the indictee cover the costs of the criminal proceedings.
In its appeal the indicteeâ€™s Defence said the first instance verdict contained substantial violations of the criminal proceedings provisions, violations of the Criminal Code to the indicteeâ€™s detriment and incorrectly and incompletely determined factual status. It called on the Court to acquit the indictee of all charges or revoke the verdict and order a retrial.
The Appellate Chamber rejected the two appeals as groundless.
Djukic has been held in custody since November 2007. The time he has spent in custody will be calculated towards his sentence.