Monday, 4 July 2022

National Call Centre for Victims of Crimes Wins European Award

ZAGREB, 4 July 2022 - The National Call Centre for Victims of Crimes (NPC) has won the first European Award on Quality in Youth Volunteering, the Victim and Witness Support Service said on Monday.

The call centre offers free and confidential help and support to victims and witnesses, as well as their families, at the helpline 116 006, where victims and witnesses can receive legal and practical information, contact information of relevant institutions and organisations, and emotional support.

Since 2013, more than 13,000 callers have contacted the call centre.

Over 270 volunteers, most of whom are law, psychology and social work students, have received training to date, and together they have done over 40,000 hours of volunteer work.

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Monday, 6 June 2022

Harald Kopitz Trial Begins at Zagreb County Court Tomorrow

June 6, 2022 - The Harald Kopitz trial (57), who is being charged by the prosecution with killing his three children in an apartment last September, will begin at the Zagreb County Court on Tuesday. The Austrian citizen faces up to 50 years in prison.

As reported by Total Croatia News, in September last year, Austrian citizen Harald Kopitz was arrested by Croatian police in Zagreb for the murder of his three children. 

Harald and his wife were divorced, and she left her children to spend the weekend with their father while she was on a business trip down in Dubrovnik. On the night of September 25, following a worrying Facebook status posted by Kopitz that was later reported by his contacts, Zagreb police entered Harald's apartment only to find the dead bodies of the children and their father in a critical condition after having attempted to take his own life.

Harald Kopitz, an Austrian citizen residing in Zagreb, was arrested by the police for the alleged murder of his three children, which was later confirmed. In the Facebook status he posted, Kopitz wrote something of a farewell letter, noting that his ex-wife thwarted their love and that his job situation was not improving. In addition, he stressed that he did not receive the necessary support and that he was ''at the end''. The worrying post caught the attention of his contacts, who reported it to the police. You can read the full story here.

As Index.hr reported on February 23rd, the State Attorney's Office (DORH) filed an indictment against Harald Kopitz for the murder of his three children.

"Following an investigation, the Zagreb County State's Attorney's Office filed an indictment before the Zagreb County Court on 23 February 2022 against a citizen of the Republic of Austria (1965) for three offenses against life and limb and three aggravated murders under Article 111, Items 1 and 2 in conjunction with Article 51 of the Criminal Code. 

The indictment charges the defendant with the following: That on September 24, 2021, at around 22:00 in Zagreb, in the apartment where he was staying with his three minor children (2013, 2013 and 2016), with a premeditated intention to deprive the children of their lives, Kopitz took advantage of the children's trust in him as a father and committed the aforementioned criminal offenses to the detriment of the children. In the indictment, the Zagreb County State's Attorney's Office requested that the defendant's pre-trial detention be extended until the end of the criminal proceedings due to the danger of recidivism and the particularly serious circumstances surrounding committing this criminal offense (Article 123, paragraph 1, items 3 and 4 of the criminal proceedings)", announced the DORH.

Let us remind you that Kopitz took the lives of his three children in the Zagreb neighbourhood of Mlinovi at the end of September 2021, and then tried to take his own life. He was sentenced to pre-trial detention.

As reported today by Slobodna Dalmacija, the Harald Kopitz trial will be held tomorrow at Zagreb County Court. Kopitz has been charged with three counts of aggravated murder and faces up to 50 years in prison.

The media wrote that Kopitz lived and worked in Zagreb, where he had his own companies, and that he worked for several large companies as a financial consultant and negotiator. The mother of the murdered children was working in a hotel in Dubrovnik, and the children were with their father over the weekend.

An expert examination conducted at the Hospital for Persons Deprived of Liberty established that Kopitz could be held accountable at the time of the crime, and the trial will be closed to the public.

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Sunday, 30 January 2022

Pleso Airport Police Head and Two Others Being Investigated by USKOK

January the 30th, 2022 - Zagreb's Pleso Airport police head is being investigated by USKOK (Croatian State Prosecutor's Office for the Suppression of Organised Crime and Corruption or Bureau for Combating Corruption and Organised Crime).

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, based on the criminal report released by the Zagreb Police, USKOK issued its decision to open an investigation against three Croatian citizens (born in 1982, 1965 and 1969) about whom there is reasonable suspicion of the commitment of the criminal offenses of the abuse of office, the incitement to commit abuse of office and trading in influence (influence peddling), according to a report from Dnevnik.hr.

There is a well-founded suspicion that the first defendant, in the period from April the 1st, 2021 to January the 27th, 2022 in Zagreb and Velika Gorica, as the head of the Pleso Airport Police Station, allegedly agreed for the second defendant to be allowed to pass through Zagreb International Airport's customs with goods without being checked.

Either personally or on his orders, through his subordinate police officers, without conducting any border and/or customs control, he allegedly made it possible for the individual in question to avoid the customs control of his luggage in which he carried clothes and footwear with non-original markings of various brands acquired while in Turkey, with the apparent intention to resell them on the black market here in Croatia. In this way, he also enabled him to avoid the collection of due customs duties/the confiscation of the goods.

The mayor parked free of charge

During the months of August and October 2021, the third accused person, the mayor of Ivanic Grad, allegedly abused his position in Velika Gorica and Ivanic Grad. He allegedly asked the head of the Pleso Airport Police Station to allow him to park the personal vehicle he was using without paying any fees, as well as to keep that vehicle at Pleso Airport Police Station's car park during his trip.

The mayor was aware that this car park was intended only for the official needs of the Pleso Airport Police Station. He succeeded in leaving his car there because his engagement was allegedly secured by subordinate police officers from the Chief of the Pleso Airport Police Station.

USKOK has proposed to the investigating judge of the Zagreb County Court to order the pre-trial detention of one of the defendants.

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Wednesday, 12 January 2022

Drugs in Croatia: 220 Kilograms of Heroin, €17 Million of Cocaine Found

January the 12th, 2022 - Drugs in Croatia aren't often discussed as much as they are in various other European countries where there are severe addiction issues and raids which often make the headlines, such as in the United Kingdom. That said, there certainly are drug busts in Croatia very frequently, and the biggest of them all happened in the autumn of 2021.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, two stories broke about drugs in Croatia recently, and the two sagas regard two entirely unrelated actions. An enormous amount of heroin was found following the search of a ship that arrived from Iraq in the port of Ploce in southern Dalmatia. Local police found the large quantities of drugs down near Dubrovnik. More precisely, they came upon 220 kilograms of heroin, which is the largest seizure of this drug in the Republic of Croatia - ever.

A massive 62 kilograms of cocaine were also found, which would reach a value of around seventeen million euros if successfully sold on the street.

"This is the result of intensive work and cooperation of the Dubrovnik-Neretva Police Administration along with the customs administration and other competent institutions, all as a continuation of an operational action in which we broke up two criminal organisations in the first six months of 2021 and reported several people.

On that occasion, a total of 700 kilograms of cocaine were seized. In the first case, related to the seizure of heroin, on October the 11th last year, a search of a container from a ship that had arrived in Croatian waters from Iraq was carried out in the Port of Ploce.

There were 250 to 300 kilograms of the drug in that container, 296 packages of drugs were found,'' said Zoran Tikvica, head of the Criminal Police Service of the Dubrovnik-Neretva Police Administration, when talking about the heroin discovery.

The cocaine was found on a ship that had arrived not from Iraq but from Colombia and was otherwise transporting bulk cargo.

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Sunday, 12 December 2021

Slovenian National Spends Months Living in Someone Else's Silba Apartment

December the 12th, 2021 - A strange story has emerged on an island in northern Dalmatia following the discovery of a Slovenian national living in someone else's Silba apartment. He'd been there for six months.

As Morski writes, since back in December 2018, the defendant, entirely without the knowledge and permission of the owner of another Slovenian national who owns this Silba apartment, physically broke down the door of the property on the ground floor and used it repeatedly for his stay until May the 4th, 2019. This odd saga was found out about by police officers of the Zadar Police Department, as reported by 057.info.

The whole story surrounding this Silba apartment got its property-legal context when the defendant, presenting his defense before the Zadar police, stated that he bought the plots on which the building with the disputed apartment was built.

After the apartments were built, he was absent, and when he returned to Silba he realised that the owner had registered the injured party who had falsified the new sales contract. In the end, he stated in his defense before the court that he left the apartment in question after the court ordered him to move out during civil proceedings, which occurred two months ago.

However, the 47-year-old Slovenian citizen failed to prove his claims before the Zadar court claiming ownership of the Silba apartment. Had he been able to actually prove all that he was claiming, his actions surrounding the Silba apartment wouldn't have been in any way unauthorised.

During the sentencing, the court took the defendant's previous conviction as a mitigation, while no aggravating circumstances were found. This Slovenian national will get to remain outside of prison walls as long as he doesn't commit another crime over the next three years.

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Monday, 25 October 2021

Zagreb Youth Commits Fraud, Sells Non-existent Apartments, Steals Millions

October the 25th, 2021 - One Zagreb youth has taken entrepreneurship to quite the next level in the form of selling apartments which don't even exist to end customers and then pocketing their payments for them, which amount to millions.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, police officers from the Zagreb Police Administration have further confirmed the suspicion that the currently unnamed Zagreb youth, who we can reveal is 20 years old, has financially three people for more than 600,000 kuna in total by further intensive and persistent criminal investigation.

During the above-mentioned police investigation, it has been found that the 20-year-old has already committed several criminal offenses (fraud) and the criminal offense of forgery of a document to the detriment of four men aged 41, 57, 41 and 79 and two women aged 58 and 59.

Namely, it is suspected that the Zagreb youth in question purposely misled the injured party by claiming that he was seriously planning to build a residential building in the western part of the City of Zagreb by showing them forged architectural designs of the future residential building, a forged partnership agreement, a forged contract with a contractor and even forged payments, not to mention ''proof'' of having purchasing equipment.

Furthermore, the aggrieved persons also signed contracts for the purchase of these fictitious apartments in the still unbuilt residential building and paid advances for those purchases to the account of the company owned by the suspect, of which he is also the director.

The material damage caused by these criminal offenses amounts to around 2.3 million kuna in total.

After the criminal investigation into this Zagreb youth was completed, and after the criminal report was previously submitted to the Municipal State Attorney's Office, the police officers informed the Municipal State Attorney's Office in Zagreb about everything determined so far in a special report.

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Tuesday, 5 October 2021

Tomislav Horvatincic Moves from Lipovica Jail to Krapinske Toplice

October the 5th, 2021 - Disgraced Zagreb entrepreneur Tomislav Horvatincic is finally behind bars for causing the deaths of an Italian couple in a maritime incident several years ago. Behind bars, however, might be too much of a strong statement, as the wealthy businessman, currently unwell, is moved from Lipovica prison to Krapinske Toplice.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, the decision to move Tomislav Horvatincic from Lipovica prison to the facility at Krapinske Toplice was made at the suggestion of the penitentiary manager, after the Hospital for Persons Deprived of Liberty stated that it could not provide him with the adequate medical care he currently requires.

After being transferred from Remetinec (a prison in Zagreb) to the penitentiary in Lipovica back on September the 7th, he spent ten days in isolation in the open part, which is actually eight kilometres away from the penitentiary itself. Tomislav Horvatincic was then transported to the Special Hospital in Krapinske Toplice on Monday to be provided with the medical treatment he needs.

He was transported to the Krapinske Toplice location accompanied by police officers.

To briefly recall some of the most recent developments in the very long saga surrounding Tomislav Horvatincic, the entrepreneur asked for the postponement of the execution of his prison sentence until the end of the year precisely because of his apparently quite rapidly deteriorating state of health, but his request wasn't granted.

After spending 21 days in rehabilitation, a competent doctor can freely suggest an extension of the rehabilitation process, and he can ask for it to continue for up to six months at most, because that is the right that the law gives him regardless of his wrongdoings. If it is estimated that he would need a longer rehabilitation period in addition to the 21 days he is initially entitled to, he may be granted a suspended sentence.

Tomislav Horvatincic's lawyer, Velimir Dosen, revealed that he actually didn't know that his client was going to Krapinske Toplice, Jutarnji list reports.

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