Hawks block ‘short cut’ to expel fugitive

An attempt to fast track the extradition of Serbian fugitive Dobrosav Gavric was stymied on Thursday morning in Cape Town by the Hawks — they refused to hand him over to the home affairs department after the department had declared him a “prohibited person”.

Home affairs director general Mkuseli Apleni said Gavric and his wife Danijela Lazic were both declared “undesirable persons”.

Apleni was quoted as saying: “On the basis of this fraudulent passport, permit and false identity, Mr Gavric and his wife, Danijela Lazic, fraudulently acquired temporary residence permits and [subsequently] permanent residence permits.”

Gavric is facing extradition to Serbia, where he was sentenced to 35 years in prison for the assassination of Serbian warlord Zeljko “Arkan” Raznatovic in 2000. Gavric had been on the run since his conviction in 2006 and was only identified and then arrested in terms of an international arrest warrant by South African police in December.

Home affairs moved to deport Gavric but the police refused to hand him over and said that it was “illegal to deport him while the extradition process is ongoing”.


Hawks spokesperson McIntosh Polela said the police would speak to the state prosecutor on Friday for advice on how to proceed with the matter to ensure that it is legally sound.

Gavric’s bail application has been postponed several times since his arrest, the last until Friday, pending the outcome of his application to home affairs for refugee status.

His cover was compromised after he was identified as the driver of the car that mob boss Cyril Beeka was travelling in when Beeka was killed in a drive-by shooting in March last year.

At the time of Beeka’s murder Gavric identified himself as Bosnian Sasa Kovacevic but his true identity emerged late last year.

Gavric claims that if he is returned to Serbia he will be in danger of a revenge hit by allies of Arkan, the Serbian gangster and war criminal he was convicted of killing. He has protested his innocence and claims that his trial was unfair. — Amabhungane reporters

Subscribe to the M&G

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever.

The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years, and we’ve survived right from day one thanks to the support of readers who value fiercely independent journalism that is beholden to no-one. To help us continue for another 35 future years with the same proud values, please consider taking out a subscription.

Related stories

Public officials must treat all marriages equally

Religious beliefs are no longer allowed as on objection to solemnising same-sex partnerships and rightly so

Marriage officers should have the right to object on religious grounds

‘Beliefs and convictions rested on religion should be allowed the freedom awarded by the law to share the public sphere with all the other non-religious beliefs and convictions’

Municipality won’t remove former mayor, despite home affairs demands

The department is fighting with a small Free State town, which it accuses of continuing to employ an illegal immigrant

IEC ready for elections despite budget and Covid setbacks

The Electoral Commission of South Africa said next year's local government elections will go ahead despite the pandemic as it has plans in place to keep employees and voters safe

Controversy surrounds former mayor

ANC says Nthateng Maoke is still a councillor after she quit amid claims she is a foreign national

Border walls don’t stop viruses, but a blanket amnesty might

Why South Africa should consider amnesty for undocumented migrants in the time of the coronavirus outbreak.
Advertising

New education policy on gender violence released

Universities and other higher education institutions have to develop ways of preventing or dealing with rape and other damaging behaviour

Cambridge Food Jozini: Pandemic or not, the price-gouging continues

The Competition Commission has fined Cambridge Food Jozini for hiking the price of its maize meal during April

Sekhukhune’s five-year battle for water back in court

The residents of five villages are calling for the district municipal manager to be arrested

Vaccine trial results due in December

If successful, it will then have to be manufactured and distributed
Advertising

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…

The best local and international journalism

handpicked and in your inbox every weekday