Europe

Serbian singing star Ceca charged with embezzlement

  • 29 March 2011
  • From the section Europe
Svetlana Raznatovic, also known as Ceca (file pic)
Ceca married the notorious paramilitary Arkan who was murdered in 2000

Renowned Serbian turbo-folk singer Svetlana Raznatovic, widely known as Ceca, has been indicted on embezzlement charges, prosecutors in Belgrade say.

The widow of Serb warlord Arkan has been under investigation for eight years over the sale of footballers from her late husband's club, FC Obilic.

Local media say Ms Raznatovic's sister and two club officials have also been indicted over the players' transfer.

The singer faces added charges of illegal possession of 11 handguns.

Ceca took over FC Obilic when her husband Zeljko Raznatovic, known as Arkan, was shot dead in Belgrade in 2000.

The couple had married in 1995. He was Serbia's most notorious paramilitary, wanted for war crimes, she was the country's best known proponent of turbo-folk, a mix of electro-pop and traditional music that critics associated with Serb nationalism.

According to prosecutors, she illegally benefited from the sale of players to foreign clubs between 2000 and 2003.

Blic newspaper said that the embezzlement charges concerned sums of 4.1m German marks and $3.48m.

The guns were reportedly found during a search of her home in the capital in 2003, after the assassination of Prime Minister Zoran Djindjic.

There were demonstrations in Belgrade after she was arrested in 2003 although no charges were ever filed against her in connection with the murder.

She has previously said that most of the football transfers were arranged by her late husband and that guns found in her house belonged to him.

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