Croatia National Anthem Fail? Criminal Charges Filed Against Josipa Lisac

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Attorney Boško Županović has submitted a criminal complaint against Croatian diva Josipa Lisac for performing and intoning the national anthem of Croatia in a derogatory way during the inauguration of President Zoran Milanovic on February 18, 2020.

Criminal Complaint Filed at Zagreb State Attorney’s Office

Yesterday Županović submitted his complaint against the beloved diva and gay icon to the Criminal Division of the Zagreb County State’s Attorney’s Office for the criminal offense referred to in Article 349 of the Criminal Code, which pertains to the reputation of Croatia.

His criminal complaint against Josipa Lisac is translated below in its entirety:

Pursuant to Article 204, Page 1 of the Criminal Procedure Code, I submit a:

Criminal Complaint

Against: Josipa Lisac from Zagreb, born 02/14/1950, residing in Zagreb.

It is requested that the suspect’s other personal information be accessed through research within the operational records of Croatia MUP.

For: Committing a criminal offense referred to in Article 349 of the Criminal Code.

On the date of February 18, 2020; during the inauguration of the President of the Republic of Croatia, she (Josipa Lisac) publicly performed and intoned the national anthem of the Republic of Croatia, in a mocking and derogatory manner, thereby fulfilling all the essential components of the criminal section pertaining to the violation of the reputation of the Republic of Croatia, which is described in more detail in Article 349 of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Croatia.


In performing her intonation of the national anthem, the suspect used mocking articulations and tonalities which, despite her peculiar musical oeuvre and expression, were not socially acceptable. And as a person whose native language is Croatian, she had to know that this form of intonation in the Croatian language and culture is always used in forms of public mockery or disparaging imitation of someone’s statement, recitation or musical or compositional expression.

I believe that no citizen, whether it is a music artist or anyone else, has the right, tonally, vocally, or through gestures; to manifestly diminish the gravity, seriousness and significance of the intonation of the national anthem or the textual and musical structure of the national anthem. I maintain that any artistic penetration into the composition, text and musical structure of the national anthem is prohibited. Such a modification or personalization may be tolerated for other musical expressions, with the consent of the author but not with national anthems. The way in which the suspect did so during her intonation is absolutely mocking and disparaging. Therefore, I believe that the suspicion of the alleged criminal offense arose from the same.

In terms of evidence, I propose a recording of the public intonation of the national anthem, which was performed in the office of the President of the Republic of Croatia, during the inauguration of the President on February 18, 2020.

For the above, I propose that you conduct the necessary inquiries against the indicted suspect in the indictment.

In Opatija, February 19, 2020

Boško Županović, Magister Juris


Županović Complaint Based on Opinion, Not Musical Background

Županović told Dragan Miljaš/Dalmatinski portal on February 19, 2020 that he is a law graduate and that does not have any specific musical background by which to evaluate Josipa Lisac’s performance from a professional standpoint.

“This is my opinion. Her performance was disgusting and disdainful. Our national anthem is particularly beautiful and patriotic and sends a wonderful and clear message. No one should be allowed to manipulate our national anthem. I have nothing against Josipa Lisac or against Zoran Milanović for that matter. Let him be President to all citizens, as he announced, and let her continue her singing, which will surely continue to garner varied reactions. However, I do not believe that anyone should intone and perform the national anthem of my country in that manner.”

Croatia Attorney Expected Josipa Lisac to ‘Howl’

“This is especially important since it happened at a public event, the inauguration of the President of Croatia, which was covered extensively by the media. I expected her to howl, but something like this…it was a form of ridicule in the worst possible way. I was deeply ashamed of being Croatian yesterday,” Županović insisted. He revealed that he does not expect anything to come of his complaint.

“This (complaint) will likely go to some music experts, and a crow doesn’t dig out its own eyes, so I don’t believe that anyone would dare say anything against her,” Županović added.

Article 349 of the Criminal Code states that anyone who publicly scoffs, despises or grossly belittles the Republic of Croatia, its flag, coat of arms or anthem will be punished by imprisonment for a term not exceeding one year.

Županović Not Seeking Media Attention, Faced Criminal Charges

“Look, I’m not seeking media attention. I did it as a lawyer and a proud citizen. I think it is just plain mockery and is not fitting of any event, let alone the inauguration of an elected Croatian president. I used my own time to write this application because I consider it to be my civic duty. I sent this criminal complaint to the institutions in charge, so they can do their job,” Županović elaborated in a separate interview with Davor Tomšić/Index on February 19, 2020.

Index also reviewed Boško Županović’s background and discovered that he has faced criminal charges of his own.

In 2016, he sued an activist in Rijeka, who accused him of collecting 66 criminal charges by the age of 25. In 2009, Županović was tried for two frauds and payment of counterfeit money.

“I wouldn’t be indulging in this kind of speculation if I were you. I am not a convicted person. You know what criminal charges are. I have filed charges against Josipa Lisac so we will see. I am a non-convicted person, and these are just insinuations,” he pointed out to Index.

Županović’s name is mentioned in association with ten companies, five of which are active. He claims to own the portal Liburnija.

“I have been in the real estate investment business for two decades. For the past two years I have been the sports director of a club in Koper, Slovenia,” he added.


Boško Županović and Friends | Facebook

Pictures with Brothers Mamić and Grabar-Kitarović

According to his Facebook profile, Županović doesn’t always run in the company of law-abiding citizens either. He has welcomed pictures with Croatian justice fugitive Zdravko Mamić, his brother Zoran, and former Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović.

Diva Lisac After Performance: “I had to get up early. Normally, I sleep until 11:00!”

Lisac’s performance gets mixed reviews from Croatian citizens.

Follow our Politics page for updates on Županović’s criminal complaint against the Croatian diva Josipa Lisac.


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