January 31, 2020.


Of the seven scheduled hearings in the trial against those accused of firebombing the house of Žig info portal journalist Milan Jovanović, the court has had to postpone as many as four, including the last one.

Jovanović’s house, in the settlement of Vrčin near Belgrade, was set ablaze in December 2018, and the trial of the accused, which include Dragoljub Simonović, former president of the municipality of Grocka and current senior official of the ruling Serbian Progressive Party, began on 9th April 2019.

The January hearing was expected to see defendants present their defence, but it was postponed due to the request of lawyers for the audio recording of their clients’ statements to be enabled.

Defendants Vladimir Mihailović and Igor Novakovic did not give testimony before the court. Their lawyers said that they will not present their defence or answer questions because there is still no technical capacity to record audio in the courtroom at Belgrade’s Palace of Justice.

While the trial is suspended, Simonović took the opportunity to deny before the court that he had threatened prosecutor Predrag Milovanović at a previous hearing, when he said that the prosecutor might not be performing that function any longer.

The defence lawyers also took the opportunity to attack the media for their reporting on the trial and comments on the undertakings in public.