Đorđe Gunjević

Đorđe Gunjević was imprisoned in 1991 by Serbian paramilitary army in camp Bučje. He organized an evacuation of 400 patients and staff from the Pakrac hospital. He was then imprisoned and tortured by members of Croatian army units in Pakračka Poljana. His house in Pakrac was burned down. He is seeking compensation, while the state charged him with 96,623.00 kuna of court expenses.

Đorđe Gunjević was in 1991 assistant to the Croatian government commissioner for health and welfare care, for the Pakrac area. While serving his duty, he was in charge of functioning of the hospital and later also of the evacuation of more than 400 sick and helpless patients. On October 5, 2010, President of the Republic of Croatia, Ivo Josipović, awarded Đorđe Gunjević a medal for his act of courage and humanitarian work in the Pakrac area during the Homeland War.

On October 11, 1991, Đorđe Gunjević, despite his courage and humanitarian actions, was imprisoned in a local community centre in Pakračka Poljana by members of the "Merčep unit", where he was exposed to torture and physical injuries.

On December 18, 1991, Đorđe Gunjević's house was burned down, despite the fact that it was located in the part of the city which was, during the war, under control of the Croatian government.

In November 1991, Đorđe Gunjević started a court case claiming that burning of his house and the material damage resulting from that act was part of no defence-military action.

In 1996, the court proceeding was interrupted, due to the adoption of a new law which exempt the state from responsibility for damages caused by terrorist acts. The court proceeding was again activated in 2003 with amendments to legal regulations.

In 2008, the county court in Zagreb rejected a claim for compensation of damages, and the plaintiff was ordered to pay court expenses in the amount of 12,080.00 kuna.

In 2009, the Zagreb district court abolished the judgement and ordered for a new decision to be made, because, during the proceeding, it had not been determined whether the damage was incurred by a terrorist act or by members of the Republic of Croatia armed forces.

In 2010, the county court in Zagreb, after a renewed trial, rejected the complaint and ordered the plaintiff to pay the Republic of Croatia court expenses in the amount of 96,623.00 kuna, in explanation that this was war damage incurred during and in the area of warring actions.

In 2011, the Zagreb district court rejected Đorđe Gunjević's complaint as ungrounded and confirmed the first instance verdict. At this moment, the court case, after plaintiff’s revision, is in the procedure before the Republic of Croatia Supreme Court.

The government's commissioner former assistant for Pakrac, Đorđe Gunjević, testified on May 8, 2012, in the trial to Tomislav Merčep, saying he was imprisoned and beaten in Pakračka Poljana, in October 1991, by the "Merčep unit". He was also interrogated by Merčep himself, who is standing trial before the Zagreb district court as the commander of an interior ministry reserve unit, which tortured and killed civilians from the Zagreb, Kutina and Pakrac area.