Serbian Citizen Indicted for Alleged 2011 Attack on U.S. Embassy in Sarajevo; Extradition to U.S. Likely
Mevlid Jasarevic, 23, a citizen of Serbia, was indicted on April 24, 2012, by a federal grand jury in the District of Columbia on charges of attempted murder and other violations in connection with his alleged machine gun attack on the U.S. Embassy in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, on October 28, 2011.
The 10-count indictment charges Jasarevic with one count of attempt to murder U.S. officers or employees; one count of attempt to murder U.S. nationals within the special maritime and territorial jurisdiction of the United States (the U.S. Embassy); one count of assault with a dangerous weapon with intent to do bodily harm within the special maritime and territorial jurisdiction of the United States; one count of assaulting U.S. officers or employees with a deadly weapon; one count of destruction of property within the special maritime and territorial jurisdiction of the United States; and five counts of use of a firearm during a crime of violence.
Last week, authorities in Bosnia and Herzegovina brought charges against Jasaveric and two others in connection with the alleged attack on the U.S. Embassy. Jasaveric is in the custody of Bosnia and Herzegovina authorities. The United States has been closely working with Bosnia-Herzegovina authorities, which means that Jasarevic will most likely face international extradition to the U.S. for prosecution of the indictment against him.
International extradition procedure is governed by an extradition treaty between two countries. The Department of State publishes a list of every current treaty and international agreement the U.S. has signed, referred to as Treaties in Force. Previously, Bosnia and Herzegovina existed under the former Yugoslavia, but became an independent state in 1992. The U.S. had an extradition treaty with Yugoslavia, but does not appear to have an extradition treaty with Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Without a treaty in place, the U.S. cannot compel Bosnia and Herzegovina authorities to extradite Jasarevic to the United States solely on international extradition grounds. However, the press release seems to indicate that both countries have been cooperating with each other throughout the investigation. At this time, it is unclear whether Jasarevic will first be prosecuted in Bosnia and Herzegovina, or whether he will be extradited to the U.S. to face the ten-count indictment.
The attempted murder charges against Jasarevic, as well as the charges of assaulting U.S. officers and employees with a deadly weapon, and destruction of property each carry a maximum sentence of 20 years. Each charge of using a firearm during a crime of violence carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 30 years for use of a machine gun. The charge of assault with a dangerous weapon with intent to do bodily harm within the special maritime and territorial jurisdiction of the United States carries a maximum sentence of 10 years.
The author of this blog is Erich Ferrari, an attorney specializing in Federal Criminal Defense matters. If you have any questions please contact him at 202-280-6370 or firstname.lastname@example.org.