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Prosecutor's Office of Bosnia and Herzegovina v. Vinko Kondić

Court Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Preliminary Hearing Judge, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Case number KT-RZ-23/08
Decision title Indictment
Decision date 3 March 2008
  • Prosecutor's Office of Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Vinko Kondić
Categories Crimes against humanity, Genocide, Torture, War crimes
Keywords Crimes against humanity; genocide; war crimes; illegal detention; murder; torture; command responsibility; deportation; enforced disappearance; extermination; former Yugoslavia; inhumane treatment; Stara Gradiška camp; Kljuc; Manjaca camp
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Vinko Kondić was born on 25 September 1953 in Donje Sokolovo in the municipality of Ključ, Bosnia and Herzegovina. During the war in the former Yugoslavia, he served as a member of the Executive Committee of the Serbian Democratic Party (SDS) Municipal Organisation in Ključ, as Commander of the Ključ police station (SJB), as member of the Ključ Crisis Headquarters and as member of the Ključ Defence Council. The Prosecutor’s Office of Bosnia and Herzegovina claimed that Kondić participated in the crimes committed in June 1991 against Bosnian Muslims (Bosniak) and Croat civilians. In particular, he allegedly killed and transferred Bosniak and Croat men to concentration camps where they were beaten, threatened with weapons, and tortured.

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Procedural history

On 7 December 2007, the Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) issued a decision ordering one month custody to Vinko Kondić.

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Related developments

On 4 March 2008, the Court of BiH confirmed the indictment.

On 7 April 2008, Kondić pleaded not guilty.

The Court of BiH issued a decision on the joinder of the cases against Marko Adamović and Another (X-KR-05/119) and Kondić (X-KR-05/155). Therefore, the proceeding would be conducted under the name Marko Adamović and Others (X-KR-05/119).

On 13 September 2010, the Court of BiH, acting on a motion filed by Kondić’s defence attorney, separated Kondić’s case from the case against Adamović and Lukić. Therefore, the proceeding was further conducted under the name Vinko Kondić (X-KR-05/119-1), while the proceeding in relation to Marko Adamović and Bošco Lukić continued under the name Marko Adamović and Another (X-KR-05/119).

On 14 September 2010, the Court of BiH terminated the custody of Kondić and imposed two prohibitive measures, in particular a ban on leaving the place of residence without prior consent of the Court and a ban on travelling (including seizure of the driver’s license, travel document along with the ban on the issuance of a new one, and the ban on the use of ID card for crossing the state border).

In August 2013, medical experts to the Court of BiH declared Kondić ‘not capable of following the trial due to Parkinson’s disease’.

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Legally relevant facts

Kondić was a member of the Executive Committee of the Serbian Democratic Party (SDS) Municipal Organisation in Ključ, Commander of the Ključ police station (SJB), member of the Ključ Crisis Headquarters, and member of the Ključ Defence Council. He was charged with crimes against humanity (in particular murder, extermination, deportation or forcible transfer of population, imprisonment, torture, enforced disappearance of persons, and other inhumane acts), and with organising a group of people and instigating the perpetration of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes.

The Prosecutor's Office of Bosnia and Herzegovina alleged that in June 1991, Kondić, other members of the SDS and members of the military and civilian authorities in the municipality of Ključ, perpetrated criminal offences against Croat and Bosnian Muslim (Bosniak) civilians.

The Prosecutor’s Office further alleged that on 18 November 1991, Kondić stopped a convoy of refugees from Slunj, a town in the Republic of Croatia. At least 30 of the Croat men were taken out of the buses by the police, acting under the command of Kondić. The men were subsequently imprisoned and tortured in the Ključ police station and later transferred to Stara Gradiška concentration camp (pp. 2-3).

The Prosecutor’s Office also claimed that in the period from 27 May 1992 to late August 1992, villages inhabited by Bosniaks (including Ključ and Sanica) were searched, civilians were unlawfully arrested and taken to the detention facilities of the primary school in Sanica, the primary school Nikola Mačkić in Ključ, the former railway station in Sanica and the Ključ police station (p. 4). The majority of the men, at least 1161, was transferred by the police to the Manjača concentration camp. During the transfer, the men were beaten, threatened with weapons, and tortured. Upon arrival, one of the men died, while two others died in the camp (p. 4). Furthermore, it was claimed that on 26 June 1992, the police launched a joint attack with the army on Ramici, Krasulje, Hripavci and Osiljak, all villages populated by Bosniaks. During that attack, at least 21 civilians were killed (p. 6).

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Core legal questions

Can Vinko Kondić be found guilty of crimes against humanity, genocide and war crimes against civilians?

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Specific legal rules and provisions

Criminal Code of Bosnia and Herzegovina, 2003:

  • Article 29 - Accomplices

  • Article 172(1)(h) - Crimes against Humanity

  • Article 176(1), (2) and (4) - Organising a Group of People and Instigating the Perpetration of Genocide, Crimes against Humanity and War Crimes

  • Article 179(1) and (2) - Violating the Laws and Practices of Warfare

  • Article 180(1) and (2) - Individual Criminal Responsibility

Criminal Procedure Code of Bosnia and Herzegovina, 2006:

  • Article 35(2)(h) - Rights and Duties

  • Article 132(1)(a), (b) and (d) - Grounds for Pre-trial Custody

  • Article 226(1) - Issuance of the indictment

  • Article 227(1) - Contents of the indictment

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Instruments cited

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Additional materials

Case Information - Kondić  Vinko’, Court of Bosnia & Herzegovina.

‘Vinko Kondic’, TRIAL.

‘Bosnia Court Indicts Ex-Policeman for Genocide’,, 5 March 2008.

‘Vinko Kondić: Nisam kriv za zločine u Ključu’, Slobodna Dalmacija, 7 April 2008.

Serbs on Trial for the 1992 Ključ Genocide, Bosnia’, Bosnian Genocide, 11 April 2012.

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Social media links

S. Dani, ‘”Ratni zlocinci” Vinko Kondic’sanickidani, 10 March 2008.

Bosnian State Court Indicts Serbian War Criminal Vinko Kondic for Genocide’, Bosnia News, 12 March 2008.

‘Kljuc crime suspects ordered into custody’, Justice Report, 24 March 2008.

C. Price, ‘Former Bosnian Serb police chief pleads not guilty to crimes against humanity’, Jurist, 7 April 2008.

Kondic, Adamovic and Luki' Who Are Charged With War Crimes in the Kljuc Area’,, 28 April 2010.

Genocide In Ključ: Biljani Massacre (1992), Bulldozers Used to Remove Corpses’, Srebrenica Genocide Blog, 9 August 2011.

D. Džidić, ‘Dunović: Optuženi u bjekstvu’, Balkanska Tranziciona Pravda, 5 September 2012.