Court rejects request for retrial in Taton case

The Higher Court in Belgrade issued a decision rejecting a request for a retrial in the case of the murder of a French football fan.

Source: B92

The request was sent by two defense lawyers who believed that they had new evidence that could affect the judgment passed against 14 Partizan fans, convicted for the murder of Brice Taton to a total of 123 years in prison.

The court's deposition chamber acted on the remarks of the Appellate Court in Belgrade and verified the facts and the evidence referred to by the defense lawyers, and the evidence that the deputy public prosecutor in Belgrade proposed in response to this request.

A statement added that the investigative actions were performed, after which the decision was made to reject the request.

This chamber found that the statements given by witnesses Dragan Crepulja and Svetlana Bubanja, as well as the transcript of a call to the emergency medical service, that the lawyers insisted on, are not of such significance that they would have an impact on the existing judgment or bring into doubt the facts established during the trial.

The decision can be appealed against at the Appellate Court in Belgrade.

Brice Taton was brutally beaten in September 2009 in central Belgrade, and as a result of the beating died in the hospital 12 days later.

The first instance verdict passed in early 2011 sentenced the Partizan FC fans to a total of 240 years, but the the jail time was reduced by half a year later.

Zora Dobričan-Nikodinović, the lawyer of one of the organizers of the attack, Ivan Grković, said she would appeal the decision.

"Crepulja was the first to approach Taton, while Bubanja was the first to call an ambulance. They are the only ones who have had any contact with him, directly or indirectly, and it is amazing to me that their testimony is not relevant to the court," said the lawyer, noting that the two witnesses claimed that Taton was not thrown down a staircase by his attackers, but that he "jumped."


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