Capital punishment in Croatia

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Capital punishment in Croatia existed until 1990 when it was constitutionally abolished. The last execution had taken place under Yugoslavia in 1987.

Hanging was replaced by firing squads in 1959 in Yugoslavia.[citation needed] Capital punishment was abolished in SR Croatia in 1974, but remained legal for federal crimes within SFR Yugoslavia.[citation needed]

Notable Executions

In the time of Yugoslavia, several court cases resulted in capital punishment:

  • Luka Javorina, chief of a railway station in Plavno (on today's R103 railway), was drunk at work and caused the death of 20 people in a rail disaster of 15 August 1949. He was executed by firing squad on 24 October 1949.[1]
  • Kazimir Antić and his brother Ivan conspired to rob the Kremenić family on Cres. During the robbery, Kazimir Antić murdered Josip Kremenić with a bat, and injured his sister Marija. Antić was sentenced to death on 6 November 1967 and was executed on 6 November 1968.[1]
  • Ferdo Darić murdered an elderly couple, Petar and Bara Biličić, in Draganić, by killing them with an axe in their sleep. The Court in Karlovac had him executed in 1970.[1]
  • Jovan Bugarski went to rob the house of Adela Bašić in Samobor, and slit the throat of both Adela (46) and her daughter Dragica (23) on 26 April 1964. The Court in Zagreb had him executed by firing squad in the fall of 1966, the last such decision for that Court.[1]
  • Nikola Kević was found guilty of a double murder and an attempted murder at the Court in Osijek, with a failed appeal to the Supreme Court of Yugoslavia. On death row, he was kept in solitary confinement and in chains, before he was executed by firing squad on 22 April 1978.[1]

The last civilian execution in Yugoslavia was done in 1987,[2][3][4] when a former truck driver Dušan Kosić was executed for the 1 March 1983 murder of his coworker Čedomir Matijević, his wife Slavica and their daughters Dragana (aged 2) and Snježana (8 months old).[2][3] In the course of the investigation, Kosić provided the investigative judge and police officers a detailed admission to the murders, but retracted it during his later trial.[4] The District Court in Karlovac found him guilty and sentenced him to death on 4 October 1983.[2][4] Kosić was executed by firing squad on January 29, 1987.[2][3][4]

Capital punishment was outlawed by article 21 of the 1990 Constitution of Croatia.[5]

Croatia is a signatory of Protocol 13 of the European Convention on Human Rights that abolishes the death penalty in all circumstances. The convention was signed on 3 July 2002, ratified on 3 February 2003, and came into force on 1 July 2003.[6]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Majetić, Vanja (2005-11-26). "Smrtna kazna" (PDF). Vjesnik. pp. 39&ndash, 42. Retrieved 2014-01-05.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 "TAJNA POSLJEDNJE SMRTNE KAZNE 'Karlovački monstrum nije imao milosti. Morali smo ga osuditi na strijeljanje'". Jutarnji list (in Croatian). 2013-07-29. Retrieved 2013-07-29. <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 "Deveterostruko ubojstvo najteži zločin". Glas Slavonije (in Croatian). 27 May 2009. Archived from the original on 1 October 2011. <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 "Za četverostruko ubojstvo i ubojici smrt". (in Croatian). November 6, 2006. Retrieved 5 November 2012. <templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. "2. Personal and Political Liberties and Rights - Article 21". The Constitution of the Republic of Croatia (consolidated text). Croatian Parliament. Retrieved 2013-02-22.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. Protocol No. 13 to the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, concerning the abolition of the death penalty in all circumstances