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Baki Sadiki’s 22-year prison sentence upheld

THE PREŠOV Regional Court upheld the original vedict of 22 years in prison for alleged Kosovar drug lord Baki Sadiki, after it turned down the appeal against the ruling of the first-instance court from December 16.

THE PREŠOV Regional Court upheld the original vedict of 22 years in prison for alleged Kosovar drug lord Baki Sadiki, after it turned down the appeal against the ruling of the first-instance court from December 16.

Sadiki was found guilty of the especially grave crime of unauthorised production and trading of drugs, the SITA newswire reported. The verdict is effective. He is to serve his sentence in a maximum security prison. His attorney said that they will use an extraordinary appeal, SITA wrote.

Convicted for the same crime and handed the same prison sentence in June 2011 when he was a fugitive, Sadiki was subsequently detained in Kosovo and extradited under confusing circumstances, which resulted in his being granted a retrial in November 2013.

On September 3, 2013, the Prešov Regional Court overturned Sadiki’s original verdict, which found him guilty of smuggling heroin from Turkey to Slovakia hidden in imported beach sandals, which effectively reopened his trial. After several years at large, Sadiki was arrested in October 2012 as part of an Interpol operation called “Infrared”. In December 2012, a Kosovo court in Gjilan cleared Sadiki for extradition to Slovakia.

The regional court suggested that a new trial was one of the conditions set by Kosovo for the extradition of Sadiki, which was later confirmed by an advisor to Kosovo’s justice minister, Dafina Bucaj, to Sme. She said that Kosovo does not acknowledge verdicts issued in absentia and thus it would request a new trial in any similar extradition case. Bucaj said the “request from Slovakia included the guarantee that he [Sadiki] will have the right to a new trial”.

But Slovakia’s Justice Ministry denied agreeing to any such terms. The right to a retrial influenced Kosovo’s decision to extradite Sadiki to Slovakia, but this condition was not listed in the official extradition paperwork between the two countries, Slovak officials claimed. The Justice Ministry claimed the justification for the retrial had been fabricated. Although originally it planned to challenge the decision to grant Sadiki a retrial, it later withdrew its plan and Justice Minister Tomáš Borec did not explain why he failed to file a special appeal against the retrial, Sme wrote in November.

Source: SITA, TSS archive

Compiled by Michaela Terenzani from press reports.
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information
presented in its Flash News postings.

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