The Supreme Court of Bosnia's Federation entity partly accepted the appeal by politician and former presidential candidate Jerko Ivankovic-Lijanovic and reduced his prison sentence for abuse of office from nine to seven years, the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network (BIRN) carried on Tuesday.
Ex-minister in the Federation's Government, in charge of agriculture, water management and forestry, will also be fined 652,861.38 Bosnian marks (nearly 334,000 Euros). He won't be able to perform a ministerial duty for the next two years.
“I express regrets because the Supreme Court of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina passed a political decision. I did nothing of what they accuse me of,” said the politician following the final verdict.
He also said he never did anything against the law while performing the public duty and that he will prove it in the upcoming period.
“Unfortunately, we will have to go for justice to higher court instances,” he said.
The first-instance ruling at the Cantonal Court in Tuzla sentenced the former minister to nine years in prison.
The indictment charged Ivankovic-Lijanovic and his group of organised crime, money laundering and tax evasion, during his term as the Federation's agriculture minister.