The value of permanently and temporarily confiscated property currently managed by the Federal Agency is close to 43 million BAM.
“It is also about real estate, movable property, vehicles, money that was seized in criminal proceedings before the competent courts in Bosnia and Herzegovina. I must praise the cantonal prosecutors of Sarajevo Canton, to whom 90% of the cases refer”, says the director of the Federal Asset Management Agency, Emir Bašić.
And the aforementioned prosecutors will have their hands full, according to the director of the federal police administration, Vahidin Munjić, who signed a Memorandum on intensifying cooperation in this area with the Agency for the Management of Confiscated Assets.
“In the past period, we had results related to confiscation of illegally acquired property, and we expect it to be the same in the future. Given that we still have several cases of corrupt criminal acts, in which we believe that illegally acquired property will be confiscated in the area of Sarajevo Canton, Munjić said.
Where does the confiscated property end up?
However, many people are interested in whose hands the confiscated illegally acquired property ends up? In this context, Canton Sarajevo Minister of Internal Affairs Admir Katica had a proposal:
“I believe that it is fully justified and reasonable that the seized assets managed by the Federal Agency for the Management of Forfeited Assets be allocated for use by institutions that fight crime. That would be of great importance for our police. In this way, we would get more adequate spaces for work, but also equipment, technology and everything that is subject to confiscation, and which individuals have illegally acquired”.
Apart from giving away, the Agency can sell, rent or destroy the property. A similar model exists in the Republika Srpska, says BIRN journalist Haris Rovčanin. Seized property becomes the property of the entity. There is no agency at the state level, but…
“In almost all cases where guilt is proven, the Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina permanently confiscates the property. If there are disagreements, the Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina has the possibility ex officio to enforce collection. It’s just that due to the absence of those by-laws, that procedure can drag on and last for years,” says Rovčanin.
Few persons prosecuted for high corruption
Statistics also show that the judiciary often slows down the fight against organized crime and corruption. During 2022, four prison sentences and three suspended sentences were handed down for high corruption.
“In 2021, two prison terms and two probation terms. Very few persons were prosecuted. The HJPC even changed the definition of high corruption so that it is now considered if the damage to the budget of public institutions is up to 100 thousand BAM and if the accused is not only a high-ranking politician, but can also be a leading civil servant”, says Srđan Traljić from Transparency International.
This year’s GREKA report also shows that we cannot boast of much progress in the fight against corruption. Out of 15 recommendations, we implemented one satisfactorily and eight partially, N1 reports.