The court also ruled that Zovko’s statement did not hurt the HRT’s reputation, the HND reported on its website on Thursday.
“This is a great victory for me, my family and my attorney and proof that I have been telling the truth all along,” said Zovko.
He said the final ruling in the case was also a “defeat of the policy pursued by the public media service at the time when Kazimir Bačić, a former inmate of the Remetinac jail, was at its helm” and when all the lawsuits against him were filed.
“This is a great victory for HND and the journalist profession. The ruling confirms the real situation at the HRT’s News Desk, which is something we have been warning of for years,” said Zovko.
The ruling notes that Zovko made statements that HRT considers contentious after the broadcaster fired him and that HRT was the first to go public about the dismissal. Zovko’s statements were a reaction to HRT’s public statement about the reasons for his dismissal, the court ruled.
The court also found that the motive for Zovko to make the statements was determined correctly and that the statements were a justified response to ill-intentioned attempts to publicly discredit him.
The court ruled that testimonies by witnesses for the defence were convincing and sincere.
The court further determined that the working atmosphere and environment at HRT had for a long time prior to Zovko’s statements been such that it could prompt a large number of persons, including the indictee, to conclude that there was a certain degree of restriction on employees to freely express their opinions and ideas.
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