The Special Prosecution Office in Prishtina. Photo: BIRN.

Serb Ex-Policeman Charged with Wartime Rape of Kosovo Man

A Serbian former police force reservist has been indicted for the wartime rape of a Kosovo Albanian man – the latest in a series of Serbian war crime suspects that Kosovo prosecutors want to be tried in absentia.

Kosovo’s Special Prosecution announced on Friday that it has filed an indictment charging a Serb ex-policeman, identified only by the initials G.P., with the wartime rape of an ethnic Albanian man.

“The suspect, as a member of Serbia’s reserve police forces, in cooperation with other persons, in violation of international humanitarian law and by using physical force and other inhumane actions, committed the rape of a [Kosovo] Albanian male,” the Special Prosecution said in a statement.

It did not provide the date or location of the alleged crime.

The prosecution said that the indictment was filed in the suspect’s absence because “all efforts to secure his physical presence have been exhausted”.

It called on the court to proceed with a trial in absentia.

An amendment to the criminal code was introduced last year to make it possible to try Serb war crime suspects who live in Serbia in their absence because they cannot be brought to court in Kosovo.

Since then, Kosovo prosecutors have been filing increasing numbers of indictments in absentia, with two filed this month.

On May 2, the prosecution announced that it has indicted a suspect identified by the initials D.R., a former Serbian armed forces reservist, with committing a crime against the civilian population and proposed to try him in absentia.

On May 4, another former member of Serbian armed forces was charged with participating in a massacre in the village of Recak/Racak in January 1999, when 44 ethnic Albanian civilians were killed.

19/05/2023 - 19:34

19 May 2023 - 19:34

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