Church of Serbia – 17/7/2020
Lawyers Dragan Šoć and Božo Milonjić, attorneys of His Eminence Metropolitan Amfilohije of Montenegro and the Littoral, have requested the Basic State Prosecutors’ Office in Podgorica for information on whether the measures have been taken and which ones regarding the illegal detention of Metropolitan Amfilohije when he was giving a statement as a citizen in the State Security Centre in Podgorica on 22nd June 2020.
The integral text we publish below:
BASIC STATE PROSECUTOR’S OFFICE, PODGORICA
To: Head officer
Respectful Mr /Ms.,
On 22nd June 2020, we sent a remonstrance to the Prosecutors’ Council and indicated, in our opinion, the illegal act of Prosecutor Boricic in the procedure requesting a citizen Metropolitan Amfilohije to give a statement regarding the alleged violation of NKT (*The National Coordination Body for Communicable Diseases) measures.
Prosecutor Boricic reacted to our remonstrance the next day by stating that he had finished his work at around 1:50 p.m. and that he had ordered the Metropolitan to be released as well as the police to initiate criminal charges. With such a statement of the prosecutor, it was clear that the criminal offence of unlawful deprivation of liberty was committed, which is to be prosecuted ex officio. Certainly, if the prosecutor was telling the truth since the Metropolitan was detained for less than 6 hours since starting to give his statement, as evidenced by the record of his interrogation.
Having in mind the above-mentioned matters, we expected from that organ an initiation of criminal charges against the competent persons of the Police Administration of the Police Station in Podgorica, who had abused their official powers and illegally detained the Metropolitan from 1:52 pm to 5:15 pm when he was released. Or, to take appropriate disciplinary action against the Prosecutor if he had not told the truth. Either way, one of these two things had to be undertaken. Up to this day, as far as we know, nothing has been done on this issue, and therefore, we demand from you to urgently inform us whether any measures have been taken and which ones.
We would like to inform you that we will be very persistent in clearing this matter off in the interest of the rule of law and the protection of the dignity of every citizen to whom something similar could happen.
In Podgorica, 15th July 2020.
Metropolitanate of Montenegro and the Littoral
Translated into English by Sanja Simic de Graaf