Release of neo-Nazi killer sparks outrage

19 March 2016
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The mother of slain rapper Pavlos Fyssas has posted a damning online video of her son’s killer Giorgos Roupakias to express her outrage at his release from pretrial detention on Friday.

The video shows Roupakias’s active involvement in the workings of the neo-Nazi Golden Dawn party and traces his movements in the moments leading up to the fatal stabbing of the 34-year-old in Keratsini in September 2013.

Roupakias, a self-confessed member of Golden Dawn – whose leading members are on trial for allegedly running a criminal organization – was released from custody on Friday after having served the maximum of 18 months in pretrial detention for the murder of the leftist rapper and another 12 months for other felonies.

He will remain under house arrest and a 24-hour police guard and will only be allowed to leave to attend the the ongoing trial of Golden Dawn which began last April.

His release sparked outrage from parties of the opposition, who blamed the government for not ensuring that the trial of Roupakias and other Golden Dawn members was completed before their pretrial detention expired.

“This is just more outrageous proof of the huge problems the country’s justice system is faced with,” centrist To Potami said in a statement, while the Communist Party (KKE) described his release as “a provocation” even though he will remain under house arrest.

Supreme Court president Vassiliki Thanou recently took aim at the Athens Bar Association (DSA) and the Justice Ministry for not doing enough to ensure the trial of Roupakias and other GD members was completed before their pretrial detention ended.

Roupakias, who was the last of the Golden Dawn detainees to complete their pretrial detention, has become an emblematic figure of the trial as the fatal stabbing of Fyssas prompted a sweeping investigation into the extreme-right party’s alleged criminal activities.

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