The leader of the neo-Nazi Golden Dawn party, Nikos Michaloliakos, denier and admirer of National Socialism, was sentenced on Wednesday to 13 years in prison by the Athens Criminal Court, which found him guilty of having led a "criminal organization ".
Among the six other paramilitary party executives, MEP Ioannis Lagos, a former member of Golden Dawn, also receives 13 years in prison. His parliamentary immunity must be lifted by the European Parliament, at the request of Greece, once an arrest warrant has been issued.
The criminal court also followed the prosecutor's requisitions by sentencing to 13 years in prison the former party spokesperson Ilias Kassidiaris and the deputy Christos Pappas, Michaloliakos' right-hand man.
She imposed the same sentence on two other party leaders found guilty of
direction of criminal organization : former deputies Ilias Panagiotaros and Georgios Germenis.
Only Artemis Matthaiopoulos, the ex-son-in-law of Michaloliakos, was sentenced below the requisitions of the prosecutor, to 10 years in prison.
Unsurprisingly, Golden Dawn activist Yorgos Roupakias, the murderer of anti-fascist rapper Pavlos Fyssas, has been sentenced to life imprisonment.
In the midst of the financial crisis, the murder of the left-wing activist on the night of September 18, 2013 shocked Greece and forced the authorities to prosecute the neo-Nazi party, responsible for murders and violence against migrants and left-wing activists for years. 1990, but which until then had benefited from virtual impunity.
On Monday, the Athens Criminal Court rejected all mitigating circumstances that could ease the prison sentences incurred by the leaders of the neo-Nazi party.
After five and a half years of hearings, the court unanimously qualified last week the paramilitary party of
criminal organization, a verdict described as
historical by the President of the Republic and a whole fringe of the Greek political class.
The court found Golden Dawn guilty in several crimes, in particular in the murder in 2013 of anti-fascist rapper Pavlos Fyssas, that of Pakistani Sahzat Luckman, also in 2013, as well as the assault of Egyptian fishermen in 2012 and of communist trade unionists in 2013.
More than fifty of the 68 accused were convicted of various crimes: leading a criminal organization, murder, assault, illegal possession of weapons. Eleven were acquitted.
This trial-river gradually led to the decline of Golden Dawn, the third political force in 2015, which did not obtain any seat in Parliament in the last legislative elections in July 2019.
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