Skip to main content

Man who lied about Bosnian war crimes will be deported, judge rules


A man who fled to Minnesota is being deported after lying about the crimes he committed during the Bosnian war, the U.S. Department of Justice announced Thursday.

Zdenko Jakiša, 47, was charged with immigration fraud in 2014, and pleaded guilty to those charges last July. He admitted he "knowingly denied" he'd been arrested, charged or imprisoned for breaking the law in Bosnia and Herzegovina so he could get a Green Card and come to the United States.

Jakiša, who was a former member of the armed forces of the Croatian Defense Council in Bosnia-Herzegovina, was charged with at least seven crimes between 1990 and 1997, including fatally shooting his neighbor through her bedroom window in 1993 – a crime he was convicted of.

U.S. District Judge Susan Richard Nelson of the District of Minnesota sentenced him to time served and has ordered his removal from the U.S., the release says, noting on Feb. 16 he will "self-surrender" to immigration enforcement officials for removal.

On Thursday, he told the court he lied to "save my life and my wife's life," The Associated Press reports.

Jakiša and his wife came to Minnesota, settling in Forest Lake, where they co-own a taxi business, KARE 11 says. He has a lengthy criminal record in Minnesota, including multiple convictions for driving while impaired, disorderly conduct and obstructing legal process, court records show.

Bosnian officials have said they want to question Jakiša in an investigation into war crimes in the country, the AP notes.

Next Up

polaris Ranger XP Kinetic

Here is Polaris' new electric Ranger off-road vehicle

The Minnesota-based company unveiled the electric UTV on Wednesday.


MN women's soccer team narrows name, logo options to final 3

The winning nickname and logo will be announced in January.

Kirill Kaprizov

2nd period surge leads Wild to fourth straight win

With three goals in the second, the Wild blasted the last-place Coyotes.

Gopher Basketball / R.J. Stephens

Late-tip in helps Gophers pass first big test, improve to 6-0

Luke Loewe's bucket with 2.4 seconds remaining helped the Gophers stay undefeated.


Man, 40, found dead stuck in air duct at his Otter Tail Co. home

The discovery was made by family members Monday morning.

Biden Minnesota visit stream screengrab - 11.30.31

What Biden said during his visit to Minnesota Tuesday

The president spoke at Dakota County Technical College.

Grand Marais

Cook County registers its first COVID-19 death of the pandemic

The sparsely populated, highly-vaccinated county has continuously had one of the lowest rates of COVID in the state.

Waits family screengrab CNN

Support for MN family after anti-maskers target child of school board chair

An online group opposing Kelsey Waits outed the child as transgender.

Pixabay - school - classroom

St. Paul schools add 2 days to winter break due to pandemic stress

The added days off are meant to acknowledge the stress the pandemic has caused.

Fardoussa Abdillahi

Charges: St. Cloud mother killed baby, placed him in dumpster

The 4-month-old baby was found by officers on Sunday morning.


St. Cloud man lied about officer assault

Matthew Randall Moe, 22, has pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of falsely reporting a crime. Moe, who is African-American, alleged that two white officers stopped him at a park in February and assaulted him.