06.01.2008, Source: Politika
In Novi Sad, group of 11 persons convicted at 44 years of imprisonment for the largest case of human trafficking, and “Politika” reveals details from the closed court trial.
District Court in Novi Sad
Novi Sad – The five-member criminal panel of the Novi Sad District Court presided by the Judge Slavko Bracan ended the process and stated verdicts to the accused persons in the largest process for human trafficking in Vojvodina, in which were also involved representatives of the Police of Novi Sad. About this scandal, for many reasons kept in secrecy, among other for sexual abuse of several minor girls, even younger then 14, but also for the involvement of, now former, “patrons” who were on the responsible duties in the police, “Politika” now exclusively reveals founding from the process.
Based on indisputable facts, Nikola Nikolić (53 y.o.) was sentenced to 12 and a half years, Draginja Nikolić (50 y.o.) to 3 years, and Spasoje Nikolić (26 y.o.) to 5 and a half years of imprisonment. They are father, mother and son from Novi Sad, whose “specialty” was trafficking in minors.
Accused Branislav Stojanović from Futog, was sentenced to 5 and a half years of imprisonment, while Zoran Kotarčević was sentenced to 5 years, Toplica Pavlović to 3 years (they are both from Novi Sad), and Tihomir Stajić from Bečej was also sentenced to 3 years of imprisonment. Now former high head officer of the local police, Radoslav Rodić, who worked as a chief of duty station of the Police department in Novi Sad, was sentenced to 2 and a half years f imprisonment. To two years each were sentenced Jovica Gajin and Sava Gligorin (both from Novi Sad) while the eleventh member of this criminal group, Danijela Jovanović, who was allowed to stand trial while free because of her pregnancy, was stated correctional measure izrečena vaspitna mera pojačanog nadzora od strane organa starateljstva (at the moment of carrying out the criminal act she was minor).
The panel decided to extend detention for Nikola Nikoliću and his son Spasoje, while Stojanović, Rodić, Pavlović and Kotarčević were free after pronouncing a sentence.
Although the sentenced persons were treated as members of the criminal group, they convicted criminal acts individually, and even hiding the identity of girls from each other. During the process, the court found that 12 girls were involved as slaves in this organized chain of prostitution (Court established their identities), and four of them were minors (this number can be even larger). As the panel found, the accused abused poor material situation of those minors and their low education, but also the fact that some of them were without parental care.
The accused turned several rented apartments, mostly in town center, into bordellos, and controlled them in order to follow strictly “open hours”, and on some occasions they brought girls “in field”, that is at Kacka petlja at the high way Belgrade – Novi Sad, where they were additionally humiliated at the precise price list.
And how much were they humiliated shows us the example of a minor D.S., who was forced into prostitution in order to pay the debts of group members between themselves. She managed to escape from one of the apartments in Novi Sad and to go to her relatives in Bečej. But unfortunately she came across Ostojić who called the Novi Sad group, so they took her back and he “treated” Stojanović, taking “only” 300 euros for her purchase.
The girl most usually got only “leftovers” from their earnings, but they have no rights to choose clients or to turn down any interested men for their services. As it was found out, they had to set aside money for the former police officer Rodić, who protected their bosses from police raids.
Particular anecdote is that they used premises of the police station in Novi Sad, Pavla Papa Street, for the prostitution. Was it on Rodić request or it was again a “treat”, but Nikola Nikolić and his wife Draginja took minor B.K. three times to this police officer, who had to provide him and officer B.M. “sexual services” without being paid.