Between 2006 and 2007, Čedo Markelić recruited two minors for the purpose of sexual exploitation. Markelić promised the girls he would give them money and help them with school-related problems if they provided sexual services to him and his acquaintances. In May 2010, the Court of BiH found Markelić guilty of Trafficking in Persons (minors) in violation of Article 186(2) of the CC BiH and sentenced him to six years’ imprisonment. The trial court, in determining whether Markelić had exploited the victims, took into consideration not only the girls’ age at the time of the crimes (15 and 16 years old), but also that, due to the victims’ “insufficient emotional development,” they did not have the capacity to consent to sexual acts. Furthermore, the court held that under Article 186(4) of the CC BiH, whether a victim of human trafficking “consents” to the exploitation is irrelevant, particularly if the victim is a minor. On appeal, Markelić argued that one of the three elements of human trafficking – the act of perpetration – was lacking in his case. Specifically, he argued Article 186(1) of the CC of BiH requires that a human trafficking recruiter must have effective contact with a third person who controls the victim, and that third person must give his or her consent to the exploitation of the victim. The Constitutional Court of BiH dismissed Markelić’s appeal, holding the Court of BiH correctly found all constituent elements of human trafficking under Article 186(2) were present. The Constitutional Court of BiH found Markelić had committed the offense of human trafficking by recruiting the minors for the purpose of sexual exploitation; contact with a third party who controlled the victims was not required under the CC BiH.
Decision available in English here.