A Serbian NGO known to be close to the authorities said on Tuesday it launched an initiative with the Justice Ministry to introducte criminal sanctions for ridiculing family members of top state officials.
The Transparentnost Council for the Monitoring of Human Rights and Fight Against Corruption said that the proposal was part of an initiative to amend the criminal code.
Council Secretary General Mario Spasic said that under the NGO’s proposal, anyone ridiculing or lying about members of the immediate family of top state officials faces a prison sentence of five years with the burden of proof on whoever is charged with the new crime.
Spasic is known for his pro-regime views and is reported to have held positions in at least two ministries and is the sole legal representative of the NGO.
“In order to prevent attacks on family members and the possible weakening of capacities in taking state decisions, we submitted this initiative with the aim of protecting the family members of current and future representatives of top state bodies,” Spasic is quoted as saying in a statement.