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Bid to Tie Artukovic Bail With Release of Hijack Suspect Fails

December 18, 1985

A federal judge refused Monday to set bail for Andrija Artukovic, a Seal Beach man whom Yugoslavia has charged with Nazi war crimes. Chief U.S. District Judge Manuel Real denied bail for Artukovic, who has been in custody since his arrest Nov. 14, 1984.

Artukovic, 86, is fighting a May 1 extradition order that would enable the Yugoslav government to try him for crimes he allegedly committed while serving as interior minister for Croatia. Yugoslav officials claim they have evidence to try him in connection with the murder of 700,000 people.

Artukovic's lawyers asked Real to release the ailing Artukovic in retaliation for Yugoslavia's failure to arrest an alleged hijack conspirator involved in the October Achille Lauro incident. Yugoslavia failed to arrest Mohammed Abul Abbas, the accused planner of the cruise ship hijacking, after he was freed by Italian officials.

Assistant U.S. Atty. David Nimmer said there was no connection between the Abbas case and Artukovic's.

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