Four felony charges and seven misdemeanor charges were read to each of 104 individuals, all of whom except one appeared before an Athens prosecutor on Wednesday for their involvement in bloody clashes between rival football club supporters in the Athens district of Nea Philadelphia on Monday night.
Most of the defendants are Croat nationals, as is one Croat under guard at Erythros Stavros hospital in Athens. Those read charges include two Greeks, one Albanian, an Austrian national, a German and a Bosnian national. They were transported to the Evelpidon courthouses under heavy police guard.
Felonies include forming a criminal organization, premeditated murder, causing an explosion, and possession of explosives. Misdemeanors include disturbing the peace, causing grievous bodily harm (both attempted and committed collectively & repeatedly), damage to property, violent actions prohibited by the sports law, illegal possession of weapons, use of arms, and possession of flares.
It is noted that although the murder charge were read, it was not linked by the court specifically to the death of 29-year-old AEK club fan Michalis Katsouris, as the perpetrator is yet to be identified. In addition, the murder weapon, most likely a knife, is yet to be found.
Police are intensely examining several leads, including from testimonies, genetic material, images and videos from smart phones and several knives.
Following the reading of charges, the 103 appearing at the Evelpidon courts will be assigned to regular investigating magistrates for their testimony.
105th arrest at Ioannina
Later on Wednesday, a young Croatian national was arrested at the city of Ioannina, northern Greece, by order of a public prosecutor.
The man was travelling on a coach bus with fans of the Panathinaicos football club, all on their way to attend the team’s match with Marseilles on Wednesday evening in Athens. The coach bus was stopped by police while still outside Ioannina.
According to police sources the man is suspected of having been involved in the violent clashes among rival footbal club fans (AEK and Dinamo Zagreb) at Nea Philadelphia in Athens on Monday night, which led to the murder of an AEK fan, 29-year-old Michalis Katsouris.
The Croat is being transported to Athens, where he will be taken to the Attica Security Directorate’s Sub-Directorate for Combating Violence in Sports Venues.
A total of 104 people have been arrested for the Athens violent incidents up until Wednesday, with this latest person being the 105th arrest.