Svecla on the Leposavic action: Praises the KP and criticizes the prosecution; Kurti met with the injured police officers

FOTO: Kosovska policija

The police carried out the action in the best way possible, they arrested both smugglers. However, despite the insistence of the officers, who risked their lives, for the Prosecutor’s Office to investigate the incident, the prosecutor of the Basic Prosecutor’s Office immediately released one of the smugglers. The reluctance of the judicial authorities to act automatically is turning into the enablement of criminals, the Kosovan Minister of Internal Affairs, Xhelal Svecla, commented on last night’s Kosovo Police action in Leposavic.

During the action in Leposavic last night, the police pursued a truck transporting smuggled alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages whose driver repeatedly disobeyed the police’s orders to pull over.

The intervention unit of the border police was also involved in the police pursuit, during which five police officers were injured and one official police vehicle was damaged.

„Recognizing the high risk to the lives of police officers, as well as other road users, police officers took necessary and proportionate actions to prevent the danger – by using firearms,“ the KP said.

In its daily report, the Kosovo Police also stated that two civilian vehicles, one of which the police pulled over, were trying to prevent the truck from being stopped by the police.

They also stated that the car driver was talking to the truck driver on the phone when the police pulled him over.

The brother of the truck driver claims that his brother was beaten by police officers after the pursuit. Read more:

Shooting and police pursuit in Leposavic: Several police officers injured; Suspect’s brother: Excessive force used

Both the truck driver – A.D. and the car driver – U.R. were arrested.

The prosecutor, however, ordered the release of U.R., after initiating proceedings against him.

While commending the police for last night’s action, Svecla also stressed that their lives were in danger. He reiterated that five of them were injured and that the situation necessitated the intervention of a special police unit.

In his words, however, the prosecution failed to do its part in this case, due to the prosecutor’s decision to release one of the two „smugglers“ last night.

„Police officers asked the Prosecutor’s Office to investigate the incident. Even after their insistence, the prosecution did not respond accordingly. The prosecutor of the Basic Prosecutor’s Office immediately released one of the smugglers who attacked the police,“ said Svecla.

Meanwhile, the Police Union harshly condemned the attack on police officers and wished the injured officers a speedy recovery.

This union also called on the judicial authorities to deal with the perpetrators according to the law.

„The action of the prosecution and the court in accordance with the law would affect the prevention of attacks on police officers and other criminal acts,“ the Police Union said in a statement, Pristina media report.

He underscored that the unwillingness of judicial authorities to act automatically is turning into „the enablement of criminals and an increase in their self-confidence“.

„Criminals should not believe they can attack the police and get away with it,“ he pointed out.

He says that law and order authorities should have only one goal – „returning order and security to normal – instead of police being attacked and rules and laws being broken.“

„I have the utmost respect and gratitude for police officers who risk their lives to enforce the law. Every attempted murder must be punished strictly and quickly, without any hesitation, and with the participation of all institutions in accordance with their roles and duties,“ Svecla underlined.

Kurti met with the injured police officers

In the meantime, the Prime Minister of Kosovo, Albin Kurti, met with police officers who participated in the anti-smuggling operation in Leposavic, including the injured policemen and the head of the Kosovo Police, Samedin Mehmeti.

The Kosovan PM wished the injured policemen a speedy recovery and thanked them for their “courage and professionalism.”

Referring to the statements of the policemen, the office of the Prime Minister of Kosovo announced that „while the KP managed to bring the suspects to justice with their professional work, the prosecution released one of the suspects within a regular procedure“.

Kurti emphasized that “the hard work of the prosecution and efficient judiciary testify to the rule of law.”

“In the absence of the latter, the actions of the Police, and therefore the establishment of public order, remain incomplete,“ the office of the Kosovan PM said.

In the meantime, the Basic Prosecutor’s Office announced that four policemen were actually injured in the action – one less than previously announced by the police and Svecla.

The Prosecution also announced that the other suspect, U.R., aided the arrested A.D. by notifying him about possible obstacles on the road, thus threatening and hindering the work of the police officers.

„The role of the U.R. is under investigation,“ the statement specifies.

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