Montenegro Urged to Probe Photos of Police Brutality, Gang Links

Montenegrin Interior Minister Filip Adzic (L) and Prime Minister Dritan Abazovic (R) inspecting special police units. Photo: Government of Montenegro

Citing a European police agency EUROPOL report to the Montenegrin government from last May, news portal Libertas Press on March 23 published photos and SKY app transcripts of police special unit officers and members of the notorious Kavac drug gangs.

In the published photos, special unit police officers are seen beating prisoners, putting guns in their mouths, suffocating them and torturing them with electricity.

Human Rights Action said they had reported 20 cases of police brutality to prosecution since last 2019, but there was no investigation.

"The Special State Prosecution must consider these cases of systematic police torture as criminal acts committed by an organized criminal group. Some of the police brutality cases from the published photos have long been reported to the State Prosecutor's office, but weren't yet prosecuted for unknown reasons," HRA said in a press release.

"Any state prosecutor who has been compromised by the ineffective handling of the cases reported so far must be excluded from the proceedings of the prosecution," they added.

The Interior Ministry and Police Directorate have yet to comment on the reports, but a Podgorica-based lawyer, Damir Lekic, said one of the victims was his client, Stefan Kovac, who reported police brutality last October.

According to the published SKY app transcripts, senior special police unit officers Petar Lazovic and Jugoslav Jugo Raicevic were communicating with one of Kotor-based Kavac gang leaders, Radoje Zvicer, sending him photos of police torturing a member of a rival Skaljari drug gang.

The gangs have been...

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