Expatica news

Maja murder motive still a mystery

15 December 2003

AMSTERDAM — The lawyers of the three suspects in the murder of 16-year-old Maja Bradaric are locked in a argument about the possible motive for the gruesome killing.

Four weeks after Maja’s burning body was found dumped near the eastern city of Nijmegen, the reason for her death remains unclear, but the prosecution maintains that the motive for the murder can be found “in the relationship sphere”.

It is alleged that on the evening of 17 November, Maja was lured into the car of the mother of 18-year-old Ferdi O. after her close friend, Nina K., 15 — the girlfriend of main suspect 18-year-old Goran M. — had unwittingly arranged the meeting without knowing the suspects’ intentions. O. was driving the car.

Maja’s friend and possibly ex-boyfriend Goran P., 16, is also believed to have been in the car when Goran M. allegedly strangled Maja, first with his hands and then with a rope. P. had allegedly not known the murder would take place before agreeing to get in the car.

After Maja’s death, the three male youths are then accused of driving to swampy land between the towns of Bemmel and Lent, where the main suspects doused the victim’s body in petrol and set it alight. M. and O. are accused of plotting and planning the murder and both of them have since confessed.

Motorists saw the burning body shortly after midnight. Police later said Maja was dead before her body was set alight and there was no indication of sexual assault. She was buried on 26 November in Nijmegen and police have arrested five people, but have since released two female suspects.

Meanwhile, the defence lawyer representing P. said the motive was quite clear. He said M. and O. have admitted that M. wanted to take revenge because Maja’s parents had made an unfortunate remark in Bosnia to his parents about the death of his sister.

Both families are believed to have known each other for years and have emigrated to the Netherlands. Maja’s parents are believed to have said M.’s sister would not have died if her parents had looked after her better, newspaper Algemeen Dagblad reported.

But a lawyer representing M has a different motive for the murder, claiming that his client has revealed a motive to him in confidence, but expressly requested that it remain secret. M. has also refused to tell prosecution officials about the motive.

The lawyer representing O. said M’s story is new and also claims that the motive for the murder is relationship-based, news agency ANP reported.

The three suspects will appear before a judge in the Arnhem Court on 23 December.

[Copyright Expatica News 2003]

Subject: Dutch news