Former Croatian Prime Minister Ivo Sanader will be released from detention at the latest by 12 December following a Constitutional Court decision that ends his remand on grounds of human rights violations.
Croatia’s Constitutional Court ruled against Zagreb County Court’s decision of 17 October to deny the detainee a record 12.4 million kunas (1.65 million Euros) bail and extend his detention.
The County Court will have until Monday 12 December to establish precautionary measures for his release. Sanader’s lawyers have tried to get their client out of Zagreb Remetinec jail since September on several grounds, including his weak health, an offer of a record bail and human rights violations.
The Constitutional Court ruled that the magistrate judge did not take into consideration the changes in the detainee's circumstances that had occurred in the meantime when prolonging his detention on the grounds that he could attempt to flee.
Sanader's bank accounts have been blocked leaving the ex PM with little access to money should he try to escape; his friends and family have wagered resources for him; and finally, the high visibility of his case would make it difficult for Sanader to hide anywhere abroad.
Croatia's former prime minister was extradited from Austria to Croatia on 18 July this year.
The magistrate judge Kresimir Devcic first ordered a month-long remand in the case of Fimi Media, where the PR firms was allegedly used to siphon off money from public firms and institutions into a slush fund account of Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ).
Sanader was detained out of fear he could flee or influence the witnesses. His detention was extended by two months in August on the same grounds, daily Jutarnji List writes.
Sanader's lawyers appealed the decision to the Constitutional Court, but the Court rejected their claim.
In its explanation, however, it left open a possibility of a second attempt in case that another extension of the detention does not take into consideration the detainee's changed circumstances.
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