Darko Saric sentenced to 15 years in prison
The Court of Appeals in Belgrade confirmed the verdict by which Darko Saric was sentenced to 15 years in prison in the Special Court.Source: B92, Tanjug
He was convicted of drug trafficking.
Saric was convicted as the organizer of a group charged with smuggling a total of 5.7 tons of cocaine from South America to Western Europe during 2008 and 2009.
Goran Soković, who is on the run and was tried in absentia, was sentenced to the same prison sentence, according to the decision of the Court of Appeals published on its website.
The Court of Appeals upheld the sentences from the first-instance verdict, although it changed the qualification of the criminal offense, while the sentences of the other defendants were mostly slightly reduced or increased.
Saric has been in custody since he surrendered to the Serbian authorities on March 18, 2014, and he had previously been on the run for five and a half years.
In the explanation of the decision on the punishment for Saric, the court stated that the mitigating circumstance for him was that he was a family man, but that it assessed as an aggravating circumstance that "criminal activity was realized on a planetary level which, as was indisputably established, dealt with large quantities of cocaine".
He also had in mind Saric's background, but that was not taken into account when sentencing.
"Given the significance of the aggravating circumstances it found on the part of this defendant, the mitigating circumstances could not have been of such significance that it would have led to a milder sentence than the maximum threatened by law, and he was sentenced to 15 years in prison," the Court of Appeal concluded.