November 21, 2007


…Now that Veselin Vidacak and Ugljesa Pantic are being deported to Bosnia – we can only hope they will be re-arrested and tried on genocide charges. – Blog Editor

Intro: We covered many cases of Srebrenica genocide suspects comfortably hiding in the United States without fear of ever facing genocide charges. Here is an update about Veselin Vidacak and Ugljesa Pantic – two Srebrenica genocide suspects who were convicted for lying on their immigration papers so they can enter and stay in the U.S. For those who are not familiar with this case, just a short reminder that back in April we had their Lawyer Chris Justice (from McKinney & Justice) giving their side of the story by commenting on our blog.

Two Bosnian Serbs who covered up their service in a military brigade that took part in the Srebrenica genocide gave up their fight to stay in the US on Monday and agreed to be deported to Bosnia-Herzegovina.

Veselin Vidacak and Ugljesa Pantic were convicted of lying about serving in the breakaway Republika Srpska’s Zvornik Brigade when applying for refugee status. The brigade took part in the massacre of over 8,000 Srebrenica Bosniaks in July 1995.

The two have been ferried between federal detention centers for the better part of a year, and in federal immigration court Monday they decided to leave the country rather than continue the legal fight.

Vidacak, 32, and Pantic, 56, were convicted in May of concealing their involvement in the notorious brigade after they were arrested as part of a national sweep that netted dozens of Serb suspects. The two had lived in High Point, N.C. before their arrests.

Vidacak — who claimed he was on sick leave during the massacre — said he was pressed into service by the Bosnian Serb government of Republika Srpska, then a breakaway self-declared state within Bosnia-Herzegovina. Pantic argued he was not a soldier and that he did more menial tasks, such as digging canals and splitting wood.

The two had fought deportation since their December arrests. But Monday they decided to drop the battle rather than risk a government appeal — and months more in federal detention centers.

“They wanted to move on with their lives,” said Jeremy McKinney, the defense lawyer who represented the men.

A third North Carolina man accused of lying on his immigration papers by concealing his involvement in the brigade, Milivoje Jankovic, was exonerated of the charges but still faces a deportation hearing.

Even though their military involvement in Srebrenica genocide is undeniable, none of the defendents has ever been tried on genocide charges in the U.S. Now that Veselin Vidacak and Ugljesa Pantic are being deported to Bosnia-Herzegovina – we can only hope they will be re-arrested and tried on genocide charges in connection with Srebrenica.

Research Corner: Here is a list of some of the cases we covered in connection with the Serb suspects of Srebrenica genocide hiding in the United States:

1. List of Serb suspects hiding in the U.S. and getting away with Genocide
2. Sixteen charged with concealing Bosnian Serb military when entering U.S. – U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (December 15, 2006)
3. Former member of brutal Bosnian Serb military unit sentenced to jail for concealing his military past – U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (November 20, 2006)
4. ICE probe leads to indictement of four former members of Bosnian Serb military for immigration fraud – U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (June 8 2006)
5. Thirteen past members of Serbian military indicted for immigration fraud – U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (September 14, 2005)
6. Four Serb suspects arrested in Chicago
7. Four Serbs on trial for Srebrenica genocide; Two of them deported from the U.S.
8. Butchers of Srebrenica hiding in the U.S.
9. The United States deports two Serbs wanted for Srebrenica massacre
10. Bosnian Serb immigrants failed to disclose their past service in Genocidal military
11. Marko Boskic – Srebrenica murderer
12. Butcher of Srebrenica wants his own admission kept silent
13. Srebrenica massacre gunmen will not face torture charges
14. Elusive Justice: a man who gunned down 1,200 Srebrenica Bosniaks
15. Phoenix, Arizona: Mecca for Serb suspects of Srebrenica genocide

  1. UN
    November 22, 2007 at 5:13 am

    If they assisted or participated in any way in the barbaric killings, I hope they all get what thet deserve!

  2. Owen
    November 22, 2007 at 10:05 am

    Dan, Chris Justice wasn’t attorney for these two, I think he was just attorney for Milivoje Jankovic, who you point out was found not guilty but who is awaitinga deportation hearing.

    Chris Justice never replied to my question challenging his suggestion that the likelihood of Jankovic as a member of the Zvornik Brigade of being involved in an event such as Srebrenica was equivalent to the likelihood of an individual US soldier who had served in Vietnam being involved in an event such as My Lai.

    He put up a spirited defence of his client but at the end of the exchange I felt he was – wilfully or otherwise – unwilling to acknowledge the reality oF the situation. A lawyer has a responsibility to defend his client but that doesn’t extend as far as distorting the truth.

  3. Anonymous
    November 22, 2007 at 10:07 am

    If they are returned to the occupied part of Bosnia (also known as the “republic of the serbs”) they will be treated as heroes by the Serbs as most of other war criminals are. There can never be justice in Bosnia as long as the main result of genocide exists – the so called repulic of the serbs. The so called “police of the republic of the serbs” has been found guiltu of genocide yet it is still allowed to exist as well. It is run by murdererer and criminals. They, to this day, continue their campaign of genocide in occupied parts of Bosnia. They almost never try to catch the many Serb terrorists that murder Bosnian returnees (whose number is small as it is – but Serbs can’t have even one non-Serb on “their” land).

    Shame on the USA for all they have done to help Serbs in their campaign of genocide.

    Long live the Republic of Bosnia Herzegovina. Happy 25th of November to all the Bosnian patriots.



  4. Srebrenica Massacre Editor
    November 22, 2007 at 8:55 pm

    Hi Owen,

    Chris Justice works for “McKinney & Justice” law firm. Judging from the name of the company, it sounds he is the co-owner of the firm together with Jeremy McKinney.

    News release listed on their site from Sept 1, 2007 and titled: “McKinney & Justice Defends Bosnian Serbs in Atlanta Immigration Court” also mentions Ugljesa Pantic and Veselin Vidacak, quote:

    “High Point residents Ugljesa Pantic and Veselin Vidacak will be taken into federal custody and eventually sent to Atlanta to face deportation hearings, Greensboro attorney Chris Justice said.”

    Jeremy McKinney is the lawyer who represented Veselin Vidacak and Ugljesa Pantic. It’s the same law firm representing them.

    Both McKinney and Justice are very apologetic about their clients, as you can read directly from their web site:


    I am not surprised, they are just defence lawyers. Their clients were caught lying, so I don’t see any credibility in the people they defend.

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