Accessibility links

Serbian Court Hands Down Suspended Sentences Over 2008 Attack On U.S. Embassy


Demonstrators tried to storm the U.S. Embassy in Belgrade and set part of it ablaze in February 2008 as tens of thousands of people took to the streets of the Serbian capital to protest Kosovo's declaration of independence. (file photo)

A Serbian court has sentenced four men to suspended prison terms for their involvement in an arson attack on the U.S. Embassy in Belgrade in 2008.

The court in Belgrade on November 14 handed down suspended sentences of between five to six months to Dejan Vuckovic, Dragan Marinkov, Marko Novitovic, Milan Tomas, accompanied by two-year probations.

They were found guilty of throwing stones, flares, and other lighted objects at the embassy building, setting it on fire.

The other three defendants in the case were acquitted due to lack of evidence. The suspended sentences mean those who were convicted will not be imprisoned.

The verdicts were the result of a retrial ordered by an appeals court due to irregularities in the initial process.

Demonstrators tried to storm the U.S. Embassy in Belgrade and set part of it ablaze in February 2008 as tens of thousands of people took to the streets of the Serbian capital to protest Kosovo's declaration of independence a few days earlier.

A 20-year-old man died in the blaze.

Dozens of people were injured in the violence which also included attacks on several European embassies but caused less damage.

No one has so far been imprisoned for the torching of the U.S. Embassy.

In July, Serbian prosecutors charged five police officers over failing to secure the U.S. diplomatic mission.

Washington has been a strong advocate of Kosovo’s independence from Serbia and was among the first countries to recognize the new state.

Serbia and Russia are among a minority of countries that do not recognize Kosovo's independence.

XS
SM
MD
LG