Son on Drugs Charge? Can Drinks with Interior Minister Keep Prison at Bay?

Lauren Simmonds

Does a coffee a day keep prison away?

As Index writes on the 4th of September, 2018, David Kruljac, the son of General Mladen Kruljac, was sentenced to one year in prison for possession of drugs. The prison sentence was replaced by community service and a monetary punishment. Instead of some time spent behind bars, Kruljac junior will remain at liberty.

David Kruljac was sentenced on July the 13th this year. Four months before the verdict, while an investigation was being carried against his son, Mladen Kruljac, a former Croatian Army commander and retired General, was sitting enjoying a drink or two with no less than Davor Božinović, the Minister of the Interior.

26-year-old Kruljac was arrested in back August last year and Zagreb police found, among other rather strange items, 4.5 kilograms of marijuana, 28 grams of cocaine, 10,500 kuna and 117,000 euros in his apartment.

The General’s son ended up in custody, and after being arrested, he defended himself in court by proclaiming that he was merely looking after the drugs and the large sums of cash for a citizen of Serbia who, as claimed by Kruljac, promised a cash reward for him having hidden the suspicious goods.

He was sentenced back in July this year at the Municipal Criminal Court in Zagreb, with his custodial sentence being replaced by an agreement to engage in community service and pay a hefty 200,000 kuna fine instead.

As previously stated, just several months before the verdict of Kruljac junior, Kruljac senior was photographed having a with the Interior Minister. Index released a photo of Mladen Kruljac and Davor Božinović having a drink in an unassuming Zaprešić cafe, taken on March the 11th, 2018. The meeting of the two was merely ”a random meeting at a public place”, or so they claim.

As an investigation against the now convicted David Kruljac was in progress, the newspaper sent a request to the Ministry of the Interior, asking whether or not Minister Božinović and Mladen Kruljac ever get together privately. Index was also interested in whether or not this informal meeting was at all related to the investigation being conducted against Mladen’s son.

An answer came shortly thereafter:

“We inform you that the Minister of the Interior of the Republic of Croatia, Dr. Davor Božinović, coincidentally happened to meet Mr. Mladen Kruljac, who he has known since the days of him being the Minister of Defence of the Republic of Croatia, in a public place over the past weekend.”

Božinović did indeed serve as the country’s minister of defence from 2010 to 2011, but a random encounter taking place in a cafe located at the same address as the minister’s current apartment seems a little unusual.

Index continued and checked out the location of this apparently coincidental meeting at the Zaprešić cafe, and as it turns out, this particular cafe is in the same building, at the same address, as the apartment in which Božinović currently lives.

It would seem that Interior Minister and his wife, among other things, own two apartments and business premises in Zaprešić.

The Minister’s wife, Jasna Božinović, owns a dental office. One short search revealed that the address of that office is exactly the address at which the cafe in question is located, in which the meeting of the minister and the now retired general was held.

Index continued to probe the Ministry of the Interior and the Government, asking them, inter alia, whether or not Minister Božinović lied about this alleged ”chance meeting” with Mladen Kruljac.

Of course, no response has arrived to that query as yet.

Yesterday, Index sent inquiries once again to both Minister Božinović and to Minister Bošnjaković, asking them to comment on the judgment of the Municipal Criminal Court and what type of message this sends in regard to sanctions for serious criminal offenses.

Index also asked whether or not the fact that Minister Božinović was drinking in a cafe with Mladen Kruljac had anything to do with the decision on Kruljac not spending any time behind bars and instead being given a community service order and a slap on the wrist. It all seems a little odd considering the fact that another man, who had been growing cannabis to help him deal with the complications of an illness, was recently handed a jail sentence.

Naturally, Index still hasn’t received a response.


Click here for the original article by Denis Mahmutovic for Index


Subscribe to our newsletter

the fields marked with * are required
Email: *
First name:
Last name:
Gender: Male Female
Please don't insert text in the box below!

Leave a Comment