THESSALONIKI – A group of 12 men accused of attacking three others who were fans of a different soccer team in Greece’s second-largest city of Thessaloniki should stand trial on premeditated murders charges, a prosecutor recommended.
Their names haven’t been given but they are accused of attacking and killing 19-year-old Alkis Kampanos in February this year and beating two friends sitting with him after they were approached and asked which soccer team they supported.
The attackers were said to be hooligan supporters of PAOK while the victim and his friends backed Aris in the city, the attack beginning after they were questioned about their allegiance.
Kampanos was beaten and fatally stabbed in the leg with a curved knife in an assault so vicious it led to brief raids by police on soccer fan headquarters in the city and in Athens.
There were also vows by the New Democracy government to end hooliganism and bring perpetrators of violence to swift justice but that hasn’t happened as attacks keep occuring, no prosecutions brought.
In an 86-page report, the prosecutor said that suspects, who were arrested and have been detained, acted with malice aforethought and that had intended to kill Kampanos and his two friends, said Kathimerini.
They were attacked with knives, clubs, metal pipes, crowbars and a folding sickle – with murderous intent, the report said although it wasn’t indicated when the trial would begin, which can take years in Greece and leads to defendants being released from pre-trial custody after 18 months.