Foto: Marko Risović

Prime evidence and victim targeted by defence lawyers of alleged arson attackers

October 31, 2022

At the retrial of Dragoljub Simonović, former president of the Belgrade municipality of Grocka, and his three accomplices, who are accused of firebombing the house of journalist Milan Jovanović, defence lawyers once again attempted to prove that prosecutor Predrag Milovanović illegally acquired evidence and thereby freed his clients from punishment for a serious crime. In the previous trial, which resulted in the defendants being sentenced to a total of 12.5 years for the 2018 arson attack on the house, the lawyers failed with the same tactic, but they have nonetheless this time once again presented the same theses, with the help of almost the same witnesses.

It is expected that Judge Luka Pantelić will use the next hearing, scheduled for 16th November, to bring a decision on whether to accept the defence lawyers’ arguments.

Homeowner Jovanović’s wife, Jela Deljanin, was also targeted by the defence lawyers. The defence team spent an entire hour attempting to present this traumatised individual, who has been unable to recover fully from the tragedy even after four years, as an unreliable witness who, as they stated, “doesn’t speak the truth”.