The Regional Centre for Minorities reported one case of physical assault against two students by a group.
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Report Data - Serbia - 2012
In a first judgment expressly applying the hate crime provision in Serbian Criminal Code, a defendant received an enhanced sentence for a hate crime motivated by bias against sexual orientation, following arguments to that effect by the public prosecutor.
The Republic Public Prosecutor's Office, jointly with the OSCE Mission to Serbia and civil society, developed and published the Guidelines for Criminal Prosecution of Hate Crimes. The Guidelines, to which ODIHR contributed expert input, were disseminated and trainings for prosecutors are being conducted to solidify their principles into prosecutorial practice.
Pursuant to the Compulsory Instruction issued by the Republic Public Prosecutor, all Prosecutor's Offices have appointed a specialist hate crime prosecutor to monitor and record hate crime cases, liaise with case prosecutor and police officers, as well as with the victims and civil society organizations supporting them.
The European Roma Rights Centre and the Regional Centre for Minorities reported an assault carried out by a group against a group of Roma people, also involving graffiti on the container they were living in.
The Regional Centre for Minorities reported a further four cases of graffiti on property, including one on a school attended mainly by Roma children, one on a container inhabited by a Roma family, one on a monument to a Roma musician and one on a Roma family’s house; and two physical assaults including one against Roma children.
LABRIS and the Gay Straight Alliance reported four cases of physical assault, three of which were carried out by a group and two of which resulted in serious injury. The victims were gay men and one lesbian woman.
ODIHR observes that Serbia has not reported on hate crimes separately from cases of hate speech.
Serbia introduced and passed its first hate crime law by adopting a general penalty enhancement provision that allows the judge to consider it an aggravating circumstance when the crime is “is based on hatred for another person’s race, religion, national or ethnic background, gender, sexual orientation or gender identity.”
Official figures record 28 hate crimes motivated by racism and xenophobia. Twelve assaults were committed, one of which was attempted murder. Ten were graffiti cases and six were cases of threats.
Serbia reported a case in which the Kingdom Hall of the Jehovah’s Witnesses was damaged and the perpetrators were apprehended and convicted, with a suspended sentence, and ordered to pay for the damage.