European news

Fugitive ex-Serbian FA chief turns himself in

November 4, 2010
By ESPNsoccernet staff

Former Serbian Football Association (FSS) president Zvezdan Terzic will face charges of fraud and abuse of power after turning himself into police, two-and-a-half years after going on the run.

Zvezdan Terzic Serbian FA
GettyImagesZvezdan Terzic was responsible for hiring the likes of Javier Clemente as Serbia coach

Terzic was suspected by Serbia's Interior Ministry (MUP) of making illegal profits from player transfers during his eight-year spell as director of OFK Belgrade, and a warrant was issued for his arrest in March 2008.

But Terzic, who was appointed FSS president in 2006, had already left the country two months earlier, claiming he had gone abroad for a professional development course.

His subsequent resignation was submitted from an undisclosed location, and his whereabouts have been unknown since, though he is widely rumoured to have been living in Montenegro.

But he finally returned to Serbia this week to give himself up to police, with state prosecutors ready to throw the book at him for allegedly embezzling money from the transfers of Vanja Grubac to Hamburg, Branislav Ivanovic to Lokomotiv Moscow, Stevan Stosic to Malaga and Srdjan Stanic to Spartak Moscow.

"We can confirm that Terzic has surrendered himself to the authorities," MUP spokeswoman Suzana Vasiljevic said.

Terzic's lawyer Vladan Batic said he was hopeful his client would be bailed after "making himself available to the authorities."

"Zvezdan Terzic believes in the Serbian justice system and his decision to make himself available to the authorities shows that in no uncertain terms," Batic said. "As his lawyer, I will ask that bail be granted and custody denied because Tezric's act shows there is no flight risk."