The motion of the Basic Prosecutor’s Office in North Mitrovica to detain six Serbs who were arrested in Tuesday’s action of the Kosovo Police in Zubin Potok was rejected as unfounded. All six people, with noticeable facial trauma, denied that they committed a criminal offense of obstruction of the performance of official duties. On the other hand, they accused the special Kosovo police units of excessive use of force, claiming that they were beaten after being tied up. Three suspects were hospitalized after the hearing.
The Basic Prosecutor’s Office in North Mitrovica made a proposal yesterday to the Basic Court in Mitrovica’s branch in Zubin Potok to detain the six Serbs, P.M, D.D, T.M, M.M, I.M and M.O, who are suspected of committing a criminal offense of obstruction of the performance of official duties.
20 police officers and 10 civilians arrested for organized crime
Lawyer Nebojsa Vlajic told KoSSev that 20 suspected police officers and 10 civilians were arrested during the Tuesday arrest operation carried out by the special units of the Kosovo Police. They are all charged with participation in organized criminal groups, abuse of office, bribery and smuggling of goods.
However, during the action, 10 citizens who were not linked to the investigation of the Kosovo Police Inspectorate and the Kosovo Special Prosecutor’s Office were arrested and charged with allegedly preventing officials from carrying out official duties. Six civilians were questioned yesterday and released on their own recognizance.
Another female member of the Kosovo Police was arrested in Zubin Potok yesterday – the Police Inspectorate announced.
The motion for detention states that the defendants jointly, by using force, prevented the Kosovo police vehicles from moving at approximately 9.00am in the village of Varage.
As the prosecutor stated, the suspects used various means, such as trucks, tires, metal objects, and trees to obstruct the police officers in performing an official duty – carrying out an operational plan for the arrest of persons suspected for various crimes.
„The suspects were told to clear the road, which they did not do, thus committing the offense of obstruction of officials in the performance of official duties,“ the proposal stated.
In the request for detention, the prosecutor, Ibrahim Fejza cited the police report from May 28th and photo documentation consisting of 20 photographs as evidence.
Denials of the Prosecution’s allegations
The six suspects, with noticeable injuries, denied the prosecution’s allegations and accused the special Kosovo police units of excessive use of force.
The defendants argued that they were arrested by the special Kosovo police units in their courtyard, located 150 to 200 meters from the main road – although they “did not interfere with their duties in any way.”
They claimed police officers raced into the yard with their guns pointed and yelled at them in Albanian. After lying on the ground, the police officers handcuffed them and started beating them – the defendants added. They also stated that the police physically attacked two women who were present in the courtyard.
A member of the UNMIK staff, D.D, who was also arrested during the operation, stated that he was in the field as part of his duties and that he told the police officers that he is a UN staff member in three languages while showing them his ID. However, the police told him to lie down on the ground, after which they took his ID card and started beating him – he said.
The defendants also testified that, after being escorted to the police vehicle, the police continued to beat them. In addition, they stressed that they were also verbally assaulted during the arrest.
The lawyer of one of the defendants, I.V. requested hospital treatment for his client – given the injuries he suffered and the fact that he was not able to stand during the hearing.
Preliminary Judge Ljiljana Stevanovic approved this request.
Three suspects hospitalized
The three suspects who were questioned yesterday requested to be transferred to the hospital for treatment due to the severe injuries they obtained. Their request was granted by the judge and the suspects were hospitalized after the hearing. They were transferred to North Mitrovica Hospital Center around 19.30h, Radio Kontakt Plus reported.
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