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Dismissed Indictment against Radeljaš

The former industry minister of Bosnia Podrinje Canton Eseda Radeljašwas indicted on abuse-of-office charges in the beginning of this year.
Admir Radeljaš built a villa in a protected area of the Drina River. The local ministry of industry headed by his father Esed was in charge of zoning licenses. (Photo: CIN)

Cantonal Prosecutor’s Office of Bosnia Podrinje Canton dismissed the indictment against Eseda Radeljaš, the former cantonal minister of industry. The indictment was issued in the beginning of this year on suspicion that Radeljaš committed a crime by delaying to issue a control veterinary number to Milgor Dairy from Goražde. The dairy was not operating until it was granted a number.

“He postponed issuing a control veterinary number as he should’ve, despite the fact that all the requirements had been met and that there was no obstacle to issuing the decision. This was confirmed later by an independent commission’s review of the case”, prosecutor Mirsad Bilajac told the Center for Investigative Reporting in Sarajevo (CIN).

The prosecutors calculated that the dairy lost 28,674 KM based on its records because it could not conclude contracts either with workers-to-be or with suppliers.

During the trial which began three months ago, expert witness Dragica Gavrilović made a report which stated that between December 17, 2015 and January 6, 2016, the dairy did not have contracts with milk suppliers and had no production and no workers. According to the expert witness, since it was impossible to organize production in the stated period, lost profit could not be calculated. Gavrilović said that the dairy could not count on a profit during the stated period, so consequently it did not suffered damages.

Prosecutor Bilajac said that there was no other option but to dismiss the indictment following the expert witness’s statement. “There should be an offence and a consequence. If either is missing, no criminal offence can be found”.

The prosecutor said that the dairy’s management could go on with a litigation case that they recently filed against the Canton to recoup damages, but he said it would be hard to successfully challenge the expert witness’s findings.

Milgor’s director Leila Hrelja said that the lawsuit was ongoing, but she was having second thoughts about continuing with it concerning the situation after the criminal case fell apart. She said that they waited for four months to receive a control veterinary number, issued by cantonal ministry of industry and that they had various expenses during those four months. She also said that the expert witness has not clearly evaluated the state of affairs.

Radeljaš’s lawyer Esad Mumunović said that he was not surprised with the case’s outcome and if he were a prosecutor he would not even begin to prosecute it.

Two months ago, the lawmakers from the Bosnia–Podrinje Canton voted out Esed Radeljaš from the office of Minister of Industry and currently he was running for the head of Goražde municipality.


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