Anastazije Martinčić: "I have no homeland. Not even plans. I'm definitely not coming back to Croatia."

Anastazije Martinčić: I have been free since September 25, 2019. Somewhere at 10 pm I was released on the road in front of the Penal de Libertad prison, which is more than 100 km from Montevideo (photo: A.M.) Anastazije Martinčić: I have been free since September 25, 2019. Somewhere at 10 pm I was released on the road in front of the Penal de Libertad prison, which is more than 100 km from Montevideo (photo: A.M.)

A month ago, the author of this interview was contacted by Uruguayan journalist Santo y Seña (synonymous with "Principal", op. P.) Fernanda Kosak, who talked about "Uruguay on the path of narcotics". I was mostly asked about the biggest Balkan drug cartel, named after the Balkan Warrior campaign, where the main actors of this cartel were demolished and slaughtered. But not all of them. A summary of the show and a link to it will be posted on our website. Last Monday, however, we spoke with Anastasi Martinčić, who was met by reader’s years ago when he was imprisoned as one of the Balkan warriors at Libertad's Uruguayan prison, considered one of the worst prisons in the world. His statement that Slovenia does not have a mafia but a mafia has a country, today, unfortunately, seems true. Since last Thursday, Martinčić has been released again after ten years.

Our last published interview for Demokracija magazine was two years ago when you spoke from a Uruguayan Libertad prison. You are now at large. True?

I have been free since September 25, 2019. Somewhere at 10 pm I was released on the road in front of the Penal de Libertad prison, which is more than 100 km from Montevideo.

Did anyone expect you to be at large?

No one was expecting me at liberty, because it was not known until the last moment when I would be released. I must say that the courts there work from 1pm to 8pm and release the prisoners at the end of their schedule. Some time is then lost until the output documents are prepared.

I have to tell the readers of Demokracija magazine that a good month ago, contacted me Uruguayan journalist Santo y Seña (synonymous with "Chief", op. p.) Fernanda Kosak, who talked about Uruguay on the path of drug addicts. The show also featured you, still out of jail. What most interested the journalist there? How did she even get to you?

How did she get to me? Hmm. First off, let's say that Santo y Seña is the most watched show in the country of Uruguay. The show has broken the ice in recent years and began to reveal the various secrets of the system in the country. Uruguay is a truly underdeveloped country where thirty years ago people were literally killed on the roads. A country where the interior affairs minister even killed a police officer. The country's vice president is a murderer and her husband, who is a former president, too. In short, most of Frente Amplio's politicians in power are long-time prisoners. That tells you everything. Although Uruguay wants to romanticize these policies and sell them as Nelson Mandela-style democracy fighters, they cannot do so, as this party has been bankrolled. Former President José Alberto Pepe Mujica has said he feels most respected with a gun 45 (Colt. Revolver, op. p.) in his hand and in the bank. That, too, tells you everything. They claim that they used to be financed by robberies, but nowadays they are selling drugs like in Venezuela, which in one way or another is only supported by them. If I go back to the show, I must say and point out that this one opened the door to me because they revealed the truth in it, not about the lack of evidence, but that there was no evidence of my involvement in the case. That's what I've been saying from the beginning. I'll be more specific so they won't make fun of the comments then. I am not arguing or debating whether or not I am guilty, I am merely saying that the prosecution or the court has no evidence. Such a decision was reached by everyone who watched the show. The comments in Uruguay are that if they let me talk and discuss on Santo y Seña, it means that this is something credible. Namely, it is very difficult to speak. In the absence of evidence, there is no fault. In my case, this was not the case.

As I told every journalist and you too, you should be able to report anything you personally think without fear of anything happening to you. Against this backdrop, reporters here on the show also discussed that it's weird that I didn't know anything about it, though I generally know a lot. Journalists have this right to speak and discuss and you can also be suspicious. However, the court must act on the evidence and prove exactly the act for which they are being judged.

Your lawyer said in the Uruguayan broadcast that the US DEA did not visit her. Indeed, large quantities of drugs are falling in America and elsewhere in the world.

 My lawyer said what she meant. The DEA did not visit us because there is no evidence. Writing that the DEA partnered with the Secret Service and that it was actually a planned drug seizure sounds ridiculous. There is no evidence at all or evidence of DEA involvement in any part of the file, because if they were, it would be written. For years I have listened to them being eavesdropped, you have been asking me that too, but how if I am the boss of the campaign? Captain Eduardo Ledesma claims literally that there are no photographs, no video, nor telephone conversations linking Martinčić, to me and to drug trafficking. (Martinčić also sends us part of the judgment where this is written.)

Why, as you said, is Croatia to blame for having you spent ten years in the worst prison in the world?

I am a Croatian citizen and the embassy of every country has the right to request a court file and supervise the course of the proceedings, but not to interfere in the proceedings, but only to monitor and control them in order to ensure and fulfil the minimum conditions. In my case, as I say, there is no evidence, but this is not so important for the country or can be explained differently. The worst part here is a trial without a translator and a failure to meet deadlines - this is the work of the embassy. In my case, I was processed without an official Croatian translator because it was missing. But it should definitely be there. I was assigned an Italian translator but I was not an Italian national at the time. I am indeed part of the Italian minority, I speak this language, but by law, the translator should be provided to me from the country of which I am a national. In addition, the State of Uruguay is a signatory to international law, where it undertakes to sentence a convicted person within two years and I was sentenced after six years. For that reason, Croatia should to take an action urgently, which of course it did not. Now, it is being said that officials have changed their minds during this time, that this is the case and that they could not judge me otherwise. Now that I am outside, they should demand annulment of the procedure with the Attorney General, Dr. Jorge Díaz. This is absolutely easy and of course legal. But I don't know what they will do.

The footage showed that the prison there justified the reputation of being one of the worst prisons in the world. Can you describe to us the conditions in which prisoners live?

This prison is on the black list of the world's prisons. What can I tell you more than that a few years ago, twelve prisoners were burned in one of the cells. There have been two cases in the last year: murder and cannibalism. The guards were given two prisoners and one of them was frying the heart of the killed prisoner. I've provided the photos to you. They are jumping over puddles of blood every day and that's normal there. Santo y Seña reporters also recently made a show showing actual life in prisons here. There is nothing to hide or cover up. No food, no doctors, no electricity, no water, no walks or only up to twice a week, but there are seven days in one week.

What were you doing during this prison time? Then you told me that you are doing something, that you were sharing food?

I was the first seven and a half years imprisoned, tortured, beaten, all with the aim to confess the action. Four and a half years I was in a wheelchair after being accused that I organized and funded capture of prison Comcar by prisoners. Then Beto Suarez was charged for this. They accused me only in order to beat me. The punches to my head hurt my motor skills very badly and I ended up in a wheelchair for a few years without a doctor of course, until I got out of it myself. The last two and a half years, approximately, I was assigned the job head of division for sharing food and regulate other issues.

Your statement was echoed, that Uruguay is a narcotic state. Security expert there, Diego Sanjurjo, stated, that Uruguay is even losing battle on this.

Uruguay is a public supporter of Communist Venezuela, which is a drug state. There is a clear connection and also a school, how to do this. Another thing that I mentioned earlier is that the government actually originated here from bank robberies and now they have jumped on the drug trade, because it is easier job. And since this is all a government work, everything is legal in their territory. EU countries have also seen this and started seizing the drug, they ship from here.

What about Slovenia and other countries of the former Yugoslavia? Losing a drug battle? I must say that said security expert Sanjujro knew the Balkan cartel.

Slovenia and the countries of the former Yugoslavia have not lost this battle. This battle is won for these countries, because this is what they are being lived out. In Drug Trafficking, op. p. is the only loss, if you are not in this game. But in this case, we are not only in the game, we are by far the first. And of course we are again back with communist systems, repackaged in different colours and under other names.

Have you ever been contacted from Slovenia after writing that they did not want you in Slovenian court as protected witness?

The Slovenian prosecution court did exactly what I told you in advance that they would. I was accused of something that made it clear to everyone that nothing would come out of it. Or it won't be what it should be. And this has names and should be punished ex officio. In doing so, incompetent judges and prosecutors have done enormous damage to Slovenia. I repeat with names and gender as well. You might say I'm a macho man, but the pattern is always the same, a female being, always the same modus operandi in the style of witchcraft and directing events that doesn’t exist. Judge Radonjic, as I followed this case, proved that the opposite pattern could also be the right one. The man said that there were no evidence and this is the end. The end of suffering and doing harm to the state and citizens.

Do you remember your statement: "People in these institutes are forced to do this 'concrete'. The man was killed. And to close the matter, someone else is blamed. ”It turned out that someone else was indeed convicted of the murder of the former director of the Institute of Chemistry and is now acquitted at first instance.

You can see that everything I told you at the time was true. It is also cynical that everything I announced at the time is true. Now everyone is trying to show all these events as normal, honest work, even with the door open and showing off the institute. They cannot deny that one man was killed, another was tried to kill. Exports and sales of various substances are proven. Whether this is normal, I do not know, but I have not heard that in other institutes they would kill each other. That tells you everything. And the most important thing, if you were writing something that was not true, you would be "eaten" by lawyers. I repeat, one man murdered, another one almost, there's nothing more to add.

You probably know that the so-called Balkan Warriors were sentenced to many years of imprisonment in the first instance. Any comment?

I followed the procedure in Slovenia as well as elsewhere. What can I tell you other than that everyone got what he deserved. I was most saddened by the news that at first instance the judge sentenced two of my friends because of my appearance in court, without proof. Not only have they been charged, they are also financially and morally exhausted. Fortunately, this is corrected in the second instance. However, a nice picture of the judge and the prosecutor remained, which again says it all. But they are still in their functions, where they were, while Judge Radonjic, who judges only justly, by law, is generally just being f****. That tells you everything. If I correctly predicted that someone else have been convicted at the time, I did not accurately predict here how things would go. Thank God. Unfortunately, he has not learned anything from this, least of all the country that should initiate proceedings and dump this set of parasites on the road. Let them work as lawyers somewhere. The civil service is like a hobby to them, it is all just fun to them.

Are you really returning to your homeland, as we have recently read in the Croatian media?

I have no homeland. Not even plans. I certainly won’t return to Croatia because I did not even live there. Unfortunately, frivolous media literally bring nonsense and harm to serious media. I will not return to Slovenia either. Maybe I'll go there for some coffee, but nothing more. I can end up in this country like Dr. Novic, for something I didn't do, especially since I have a problem with them. Now you could make me a cyclist, just with some better scenario and 'timing' (time). So, that won't happen.

Are you likely to appear as a character in a novel, documentary or telenovela soon?

Some producers are already in touch with me, but they are waiting for the end of this matter, which may still take a while.

You know Rocco Morabito, who recently escaped from prison, where you were too? Is Morabito really as dangerous mobster as they wrote?

I’m not going to say I don’t know him, and this is well known. Whether he is a mobster or not, I don't know, all I know is that he should be already free under the laws of this country.

Is it true that they even saw you with him, now that you are at large?

Look, Rocco Morabito is not in the country, and I'm mostly in the apartment. This human morbidity or voyeurism is compounded by the lie that I can bee seen in several places at one time, from Colombia to Portorož.

It is true that they have now even put you on the list of the five most dangerous people in the world?

It's all about what's true and what's not. I tell you that I am an ordinary man who lives his life. They never proved anything to me that they could put me on the list of anything.

(This interview was published in Democracy Magazine, October 3, 2019.)

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