Former Justice Minister asks for abolition of Law he passed to Decongest Greek prisons

Former Justice Minister

Former Justice Minister

by Aggelos Skordas

The abolition of the controversial law that was passed during his term aiming at the decongestion of the Greek prisons, has now been proposed by former Justice Minister Nikos Paraskevopoulos, after two years of debates, firm criticism and the release of some 2,000 prisoners. Commenting on the opposition leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis’ statements questioning the law’s beneficial effects on Greek prisons, Paraskevopoulos stressed that even though it might sound odd Kyriakos Mitsotakis is right. “Any law on prison decongestion -they wrongly call it the ‘Paraskevopoulos law’ to stigmatise me- is an extraordinary law to handle emergency conditions and has no reason to be in force constantly”, he said.

The former minister also declared that this emergency law should be replaced by new provisions on penalties and preconditions of prisoner release, while noted that there would be immediate changes in both the Penal Code and the Criminal Code that would lead to better conditions in the prisons.

In an official statement issued by the main opposition party of New Democracy is highlighted that “Mr. Paraskevopoulos released 2,000 prisoners convicted of felonies and now recommends rescinding the law, because it is no longer needed. Indeed, whatever disastrous aim Mr. Paraskevopoulos sought to achieve, he accomplished. Let him persuade Alexis Tsipras to adopt New Democracy’s steadfast demand, as he just last Friday described the repugnant law as necessary”.

New Democracy leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis has repeatedly announced that when elected he will abolish the so called “Paraskevopoulos law” which allows criminals who have served part of their sentence to be released from prison, in an attempt to relieve prison overcrowding.

It should be noted that among those benefited from “Paraskevopoulos law”, passed in 2015, was one of the two suspects arrested for the murder of prominent lawyer Michalis Zafeiropoulos on October 12 in his office in downtown Athens.

GCT Team

This article was researched and written by a GCT team member.