A Brooklyn student beaten into a coma by a classmate who then fled to Serbia is poised to receive a nearly a million dollar settlement, according to a newspaper report.
The Serbian government will pay Bryan Steinhauer, 22, $900,000 for his injuries suffered at an upstate bar, the New York Post reported. The Post characterized the settlement as “blood-money” since Steinhauer’s alleged assailant and former classmate, Miladin Kovacevic, has not yet been tried for the crime.
The beating sparked a diplomatic crisis between the U.S. and Serbia, which have no formal extradition treaty with each other. Serbia reportedly agreed to give up its claim to the $100,000 in bail money it posted on Kovacevic’s behalf, though its politicians have been criticized in local newspapers for the deal, according to the Post.
The Post said Hillary Clinton’s State Department was responsible for the settlement, though it represented a departure from her past position that Kovacevic be returned to the U.S. for trial.
“This was Hillary Clinton’s initiative all the way through,” an anonymous government official told the Post.
Serbia declined official comment on the story, and a state department spokesperson said the issue was a “private matter.”
Nearly two weeks ago, Serbia’s foreign minister, Vuk Jeremic, said his country would not extradite Kovacevic. In recent days, Serbian media had reported the terms of the deal, which Clinton and Sen. Chuck Schumer had opposed until now, according to the Associated Press.