June 9, 2017

Sixteen years after the murder of Večernje Novosti’s Jagodina correspondent, Milan Pantić, the police investigation has finally been completed, with the names of the suspected masterminds and perpetrators, who are “from the territory of Belgrade and Jagodina”, submitted to the office of the prosecutor, says Veran Matić, President of the Commission for Investigating Murders of Journalists, speaking to Cenzolovka.

Source: Cenzolovka

Matić said in an interview, which Cenzolovka will publish tomorrow, that the investigation showed that evidence had been collected for the contractors, that light had been shed on their motives, and that Pantić was killed directly as a result of his work as a journalist and his investigative articles on corruption and crime in Jagodina and that part of Serbia.

The detailed report, said Matić, was submitted ten days ago by police to the competent prosecutor in Jagodina, which is now expected to “as soon as possible, make some appropriate decisions and take action in accordance with its legal jurisdiction”.

In other words, to ultimately launch a prosecution investigation.

“Pantić’s assassination is directly linked to his journalistic work in 1999, 2000, all the way until 11th June 2001. The murder was linked to his professional engagement, choice of topics, investigative journalism, which he dealt with in his hometown. At the beginning of the work of the Commission the articles of Milan Pantić were collected and systematised for the first time, then analysed in order to define possible motives and clues. Analysis of his work helped to more clearly define the motives. He also certainly left a very persuasive professional track when it comes to the fight against corruption,” says Matić.

He says that for the members of the Commission this is a particularly important case, because it is a “brutal murder of a witness to corruption at a time when a democratically elected pro-democratic government was in power”.

You can read about the progression of the investigation of the police team, which was led by the former head of the Criminal Police Administration, Dragan Kecman, in Cenzolovka’s interview with Veran Matić tomorrow.

Journalist Milan Pantić was bludgeoned to death on 11th June 2001 in front of his apartment building in Jagodina.