Ex football boss will not be extradited to Croatia

NEWS 15.06.2018 13:06
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Source: N1

Bosnia's State Court ruled against Croatia's request for ex football boss Zdravko Mamic to be extradited in order to serve his 6.5 year prison sentence for embezzlement in Croatia.

Mamic was found guilty of siphoning millions of Euro from a soccer team and the tax authorities but as he has dual citizenship, he came to Bosnia a day before the sentencing.

He settled in the southern town of Medjugorje and told N1 on Wednesday that will not go back to Croatia, even if it was a matter of life and death.

Bosnia and Croatia are not extraditing their citizens to each other.

“I can freely move throughout the entire territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina,” Mamic told reporters after a Friday morning hearing at the state court.

“Mr. Mamic is a citizen of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the Extradition Agreements between the Republic of Croatia and Bosnia do not provide the possibility for Mr. Mamic to be extradited, the conditions are not met,” Mamic’s lawyer, Ivica Rajic, told reporters.

“Considering the nature of the criminal act (Mamic was sentenced for), there is no element of reciprocity, and the Court ordered for the extradition process to be halted, as the defense requested,” he said.

On Wednesday, Bosnia’s Interpol office received a Croatian request for Mamic’s arrest and extradition. A day later, he was detained by State Investigation and Protection Agency (SIPA) officers and brought to the state police headquarters to spend the night in custody ahead of his hearing on Friday morning in front of the State Court.

Mamic told the judge he does not want to be extradited and that his current address is in Tomislavgrad, to which judge Tatjana Kosovic warned him that he is required to report any changes to his address to authorities while the court process is ongoing.

Mamic also repeated that the Croatian trial against him was “a setup” and that he does not trust Croatia’s justice system and that the people who prosecuted him were not competent to do the job.

““I simply ask myself which project I am part of here?” he asked, noting that whatever rule could be breached in Croatia, was breached in his case.

Croatia sentenced Mamic, the former Dinamo football club boss and incumbent adviser to the club, his brother Zoran, former Dinamo director Damir Vrbanovic and tax official Milan Pernar for siphoning about 116 million Kuna (€15.7 million) from Dinamo and defrauding the state budget of about 12.2 million Kuna (€1.6 million) in unpaid taxes and surtaxes.

Zdravko Mamic was sentenced to six and a half years in prison, his brother to four years and 11 months, Pernar to four years and two months, and Vrbanovic to three years.