Krusik whistleblower Aleksandar Obradovic was freed from house arrest on Wednesday by a Belgrade Higher Court judge who ruled that the reasons for the house arrest order were no longer valid.
Obradovic was arrested and later put into house arrest for leaking documents showing dubious deals between the state-owned Krusik munitions plant and private companies, including a deal with the GIM company in which a cabinet minister’s father was involved.
Obradovic found out that he was free from an N1 TV crew. He said that he was excited and happy but not euphoric. “I realize that I am not definitively free… The final whistle hasn’t blown and this might just be a time-out by the opposing side in the first quarter to close ranks, analyze the pressing from our side and try to counter it,” he said, adding that the fight continues.
A court press release said that the judge lifted the house arrest order and ban on Internet access. The ruling said that the prosecutor informed the court on December 18 that he was leaving the decision on the house arrest measure up to the court. The prosecutor has a three-day deadline to appeal the ruling.
The court ruling comes after the Freedom for Aleksandar and Association to Protect the Constitution and Law handed State Prosecutor Zagorka Dolovac a petition signed by 25,000 people demanding Obradovic’s release.
Obradovic was arrested three days after the Arms Watch portal published an article about how private companies bought munitions from Krusik at privileged prices, naming Internal Affairs Minister Nebojsa Stefanovic’s father Branko as a mediator. He was charged with revealing business secrets.