Serbian paramilitary commanders, Milorad Ulemek and Zvezdan Jovanovic have each been sentenced to 40-years in prison for assassinating the country’s Prime Minister Zoran Djindjic, after the Supreme Court rejected all of the defense’s appeals.
Ulemek is sentenced to 40 years in jail for joining a criminal enterprise and for unconstitutional activities and attempted murder, while Jovanovic was also sentenced to 40 years for the murder of the prime minister, attempted murder and belonging to a criminal enterprise set up to conduct hostile activities.
Djindjic, who was Serbia’s first democratically elected prime minister, was assassinated on 12 March, 2003 in front of the government building. The court confirmed that Ulemek organized the assassination whereas Jovanovic pulled the trigger and killed Djindjic.
During the trial, Jovanovic refused to speak but his written statement provided enough evidence since it said: “I liquidated Zoran Djindjic personally. I was not interested in money. I did it to prevent the extradition of our people to The Hague.”
The two were members of now disbanded Serbia’s Special Operations Unit under Slobodan Milosevic, JSO, which was created during the Balkan wars.
Final verdicts were earlier given for the assassination to nine members of the so-called criminal Zemun Clan for colluding in the murder.