Appellate Court judge Miodrag Majic said, citing the Criminal Code of the Republic of Serbia, that giving and receiving bribe in connection with voting is punishable by law.
“Unfortunately, it is punishable. Article 156, paragraph 1 of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Serbia,” Majic wrote on X social media platform.
His X post comes after Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic noted on Friday evening that the work of call centers in the pre-election campaign “is not punishable.”
“Of course, it is not punishable. We are talking about people who would prevent any kind of campaign because they don’t have their own political parties that could do anything. You pay something, somewhere you have volunteers who work because they are members of the party, and somewhere you pay people as professionals who are there to help. I don’t understand, where it is not allowed,” said Vucic.
But, judge Majic dismissed the allegations, citing the parts of the Criminal Code:
Giving and receiving bribes in connection with voting
(1) Whoever offers, gives, promises a prize, gift or any other benefit to another person to vote or not to vote in an election or referendum, or to vote in favour of or against a specific person or proposal, shall be punished by a fine or imprisonment for up to three years.
(2) Whoever requests or receives a gift or any other benefit for voting or not voting in an election or referendum, or for voting in favour of or against a specific person or proposal, shall also be punished with the penalty referred to in paragraph 1 of this article.
(3) If the act referred to in Paragraph 1 of this Article is committed by a member of the polling committee or another person in the performance of duties in connection with voting, they shall be punished by imprisonment from three months to five years.
(4) A gift or other benefit will be forfeited.
The comments come after a journalist of the Center for Investigative Journalism of Serbia (CINS) was recruited for the SNS call center and discovered the work scheme, but also much more than that – how to pay for voice.
It is a call center with the premises in the Dunavska BB Street, where more than a hundred people make calls to the citizens of Serbia on daily basis asking the only one question – will you vote for the SNS?
The CINS journalist, who was actually on an undercover assignment, managed to get a recommendation and get a „job“ in the call center.
Officially, it is an agency providing hostesses for events called ‘M&J Lady’.
The daily wage for working in a call center is 3,000 dinars per day, except on election day when it gets three times larger, nine thousand. But, if you vote for SNS.