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The trial of Fire Nuclei will be held in an empty courtroom

03 February 2011 / 16:02:59  GRReporter
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Anastasia Balezdrova

The trial of the accused members of the terrorist organization Conspiracy of Fire Nuclei took a turn. The court decided at the meeting that lasted several hours to proceed with the case in the absence of the accused and their defenders.

The court took the strict decision after the lawyers the defendants had chosen refused to be appointed as official solicitors. This was the third attempt of the court to provide defenders for the defendants who left the courtroom in protest against their demands’ rejection - they requested recording of the hearings and the police guard not to keep the ID cards of their relatives and friends.

The defendants did not appear in the courtroom today either. Four of them sent a statement to the judicial council which was read in the courtroom. They announced that they would resort to more serious protest against court decisions by starting a hunger strike.

To justify their refusal to accept the appointment by the court all the lawyers cited the "clash of commitments" because they still had the confidence of their clients. According to others, the court's decision was illegal and some wondered how the court had chosen them having in mind that their names were not in the list of public defenders.

The three defendants who are at liberty said they trust their lawyers and once again stressed their refusal to participate in the trial.

Costas Papadakis, defender of Alexandros Mitrousias who does not not participate in the hunger strike, presented to the court one of his "public statements" about the defendants’ claims. The lawyer pointed out in the statement that there was no article in the Criminal Procedure Code requiring or allowing the personal data of persons present in the courtroom to be written down.

As for the recording of the hearings, the lawyer argued that only the judicial council was to decide whether the hearings should be recorded. He presented a contract signed between the Ministry of Justice and a private company under which the phonogram would cost just under 700 euros per day.  

"I think the trial would continue thirty days under normal circumstances and the cost for thirty days would amount to 20,148 euros. This is a ridiculous amount compared to the money spent on recordings of divorce cases in Greece," said Costas Papadakis.

Despite the prosecutor’s opposite opinion the chairwoman of the Judicial Council ordered the records containing the refusals of defenders appointment to be sent to the prosecution and the Athens Bar Association

The judge rejected the prosecutor’s proposal new defenders to be appointed.

The court adjourned for deliberation and two hours later announced its decision the trial to continue without the participation of the defendants and their lawyers, but they would be considered present. According to the judicial council decision, the accused aimed to slow down the proceedings and they improperly used the right to choose defendants in order to hamper the hearing.

In making its decision the court took into account the imminent expiry of the 18-month period of detention of some of the defendants.

The present in the courtroom responded negatively to the decision of the court called by someone "military tribunal".

The trial continued with the reading of the indictment. The hearing will continue tomorrow when the first witnesses will be questioned.


Tags: Crime newsTrialConspiracy of Fire NucleiTerrorist organisation
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