International Justice

CJ354 Endicott College

Lukić appeals rejected

In July 2009, Milan Lukić was found guilty of crimes against humanity by the ICTY (International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia). His sentence was life imprisonment. His cousin Sredoje Lukić was also convicted by the ICTY for taking part in many of Milan Lukić’s crimes. Sredoje Lukić was sentenced to 30 years in prison.

According to the ICTY judgment summary, Milan Lukić was charged with “nine counts of violations of the laws or customs of war punishable under Article 3 of the Statute and Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949: murder (counts 3, 7, 10, 15 and 19) and cruel treatment (counts 5, 12, 17 and 21). Milan Lukić is also charged with 12 counts of crimes against humanity punishable under Article 5 of the Statute: persecution (count 1), extermination, (counts 8 and 13), murder (counts 2, 6, 9, 14 and 18) and inhumane acts (counts 4, 11, 16 and 20)”. Sredoje Lukic was charged with “five counts of violations of the laws or customs of war pursuant to Article 3 of the Statute: murder (counts 10 and 15) and cruel treatment (counts 12, 17 and 21). Sredoje Lukić is also charged with eight counts of crimes against humanity pursuant to Article 5 of the Statute: persecution (count 1), extermination (counts 8 and 13), murder (counts 9 and 14) and inhumane acts (counts 11, 16 and 20)”. The ICTY judgment summary is available here.

Notably, M. Lukić (and his unit) were responsible for the Pionirska Street fire and the Bikavac fire. Both of these incidents involved Bosniak civilians being detained in a house, and then having that house set on fire. When they were convicted, Judge Robinson said “In the all too long, sad and wretched history of man’s inhumanity to man, the Pionirska street and Bikavac fires must rank high. At the close of the twentieth century, a century marked by war and bloodshed on a colossal scale, these horrific events stand out for the viciousness of the incendiary attack, for the obvious premeditation and calculation that defined it, for the sheer callousness and brutality of herding, trapping and locking the victims in the two houses, thereby rendering them helpless in the ensuing inferno, and for the degree of pain and suffering inflicted on the victims as they were burnt alive.”

Yesterday, both M. Lukić and S. Lukić had their appeals (which were against the convictions for the war crimes) rejected. Milan Lukić’s life sentence was kept, and Sredoje Lukić’s sentence was shortened by three years (from 30 years to 27).

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-20591187

http://www.icty.org/x/cases/milan_lukic_sredoje_lukic/tjug/en/090720_j.pdf

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