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Ex-Bosnian leader to head home after court ruling frees him

By the CNN Wire Staff
  • NEW: Ejup Ganic heads for Bosnia's capital Wednesday
  • The extradition request was politically motivated, the judge finds
  • Ganic will not be sent to Serbia
  • Ganic is wanted in Serbia for alleged 1992 war crimes

London, England (CNN) -- Former Bosnian leader Ejup Ganic will leave London for Sarajevo, Bosnia, on Wednesday, a day after a British court ruled that he not be extradited to Serbia.

Ganic called the extradition request "a textbook example of abuse," accusing the Serbian government of trying to "undermine the judiciary in this country."

The extradition request was politically motivated, Justice Timothy Workman found in throwing it out.

"No striking or substantial new evidence" was brought against him, the judge ruled.

Ganic, who was arrested at England's Heathrow Airport in March at Serbia's request, is wanted in Serbia for conspiracy to murder in breach of the Geneva Conventions, a spokesman at Britain's Foreign Office said.

Ganic's lawyer, Stephen Gentle, denied that he had any role in the 1992 killings in question. In April, Gentle said that "the extradition request is politically motivated. It is legally flawed, and he has nothing to hide."

Ganic was the vice president of Bosnia during the civil war there between 1992 and 1995 and was twice president of the Bosnian-Croat Federation in the years following the 1995 Dayton peace agreement. Many independent commentators at the time regarded Ganic as a relative moderate in the wartime Bosnian leadership.

Though Bosnian, Ganic was born in Serbia and speaks with a recognizable Serbian accent. He holds dual nationality in the former Yugoslav republics.

CNN's Andrew Carey contributed to this report.