The Humanitarian Law Center files a criminal complaint against more than 30 individuals for war crimes committed in Croatia in 1991
The Humanitarian Law Center (HLC) filed a criminal complaint with the Office of the War Crimes Prosecutor of the Republic of Serbia against more than 30 individuals, members of the former Territorial Defense (TO) and police station in Tenja (Croatia), as well as a number of members of the Novi Sad Corps of the Yugoslav National Army (JNA), members of military and civilian secret services, and groups under the command of Željko Ražnatović Arkan for war crimes committed in Tenja in 1991 against the civilian population and prisoners of war.
The individuals named in the criminal complaint carried out mass executions of unarmed civilians, Croatian nationals and other non-Serbs in order to intimidate them into leaving Tenja as soon as possible. In the period July 1991 to November 1991, those individuals have killed at least 29 civilians: Marija (Ilija) Cerenko, Ana (Stjepan) Horvat, Katica (Ignjat) Kiš, Franjo Burč, Pero (Marijan) Mamića, Josip (Petar) Medved, Mato (Gjuro) Nađ, Stipe (Mate) Penić, Evica (Rozalija) Penić, Josip (Ladislav) Prodanović, Ivan (Mate) Valentić, Vlado (Mate) Valentić, Stevo (Svetislav) Bačić, Franciska (Nikola) Bogović, Josa (Mile) Božičević, Ante (Jakov) Golek, Jure (Ivo) Šarić, Josip (Valentin) Hodak, Mate (Gjuro) Mikolaš, Steva (Pero) Topalović, Tomas (Pero) Topalović, Đura (Ignjaca) Kiš, Mara (Pera) Knežević, Marko (Marijan) Knežević, Franjo (Josipa) Fućek, Manda (Petar) Banović, Nedeljko (Andrija) Gotovac, Elizabeta (Mato) Gotovac i Andrije (Nedeljko) Gotovac. The bodies of 13 killed persons have not yet been found.
The individuals named in the criminal complaint have illegally detained a number of civilians, Croats and other non-Serbs, and held them in basements of private houses, in meat-smoking rooms not larger than a couple of square meters, and all kinds of other objects in Tenja where they were brutally beaten, robbed of their valuables etc. Household appliances and electronics along with any valuable items were removed from their houses; they were forced to conduct forced labor for the Serbs and to sing Serbian nationalistic and Chetnik songs. Victims of such behavior were, among others, Pero Mamić, Vlado Valentić, Ivan Valentić, Mato Božičevićem, Ivko Krajina, Mato Krajina, Drago Balog, Rozalija Varga, Rozalija’s brother whose first and last name remain unknown but whose nickname was Dragec, Ivan Krešo, and Maroa Kostić. Men and women were held together in those private houses and meat-smoking rooms in unsanitary conditions, without food and necessary medication. Pera Mamić, a Croatian woman from Tenja was held in a meat-smoking room not larger than three square meters with two male Croatian prisoners. She had a prosthetic (glass) eye and because she was not allowed to bring her eye drops and eye medication, i.e. her artificial eye, she suffered severe pain during the her imprisonment.
In October 1991, the charged individuals from the Tenja TO and the police station in Tenja took over from the members of the Novi Sad Corps of JNA and the members of the Military Police of JNA four prisoners, members of the Croatian National Guard (ZNG) from the 106thBrigade of the Croatian Army – Ivica Lovrić, Franjo Ciraki, Miroslav Varga, and Ivan Vadlj. They locked them up in the building of the elementary school in Tenja which was used as a prison under the command of the police station in Tenja. After being interrogated and brutally beaten all four prisoners were executed.
In the course of 1991, the individuals charged in this criminal complaint forced 2,961 Croatian nationals and other non-Serbs to leave the region of Tenja.