by Aggelos Skordas
Two months ago convicted “November 17” hitman Dimitris Koufodinas was granted a 48-hour prison release for the first time in 15 years sparking strong reactions among his victims’ relatives, the Greek opposition parties, as well as the United States, Britain and Turkey, motherlands of some of his “targets”. On Thursday, the 59-year-old former mathematician and beekeeper applied for yet another furlough from Athens’ Korydallos Prison where he is serving his 11 life sentences since 2003, when the self proclaimed “Revolutionary Organization November 17” was wiped out by the Greek authorities.
Specifically, Koufodinas has applied to the prison’s parole board for an additional leave, although it remains unclear whether his request will be fulfilled or when the board will convene to make a decision over his application. According to his reasoning, he applied for the furlough in order to exercise his former profession as well as to meet friends and relatives.
The far-left urban guerilla group’s chief of operations was convicted for eleven murderous hits and during his previous prison leave was received outside Korydallos Prison by friends, relatives and supporters belonging to Greece’s anti-establishment movement. “November 17” (characterised as a terrorist group by the Greek authorities and various other countries) was formed in 1975 and was named after the day of the 1973 Athens Polytechnic uprising against the military junta. Alexandros Giotopoulos was identified as the group leader. Until 2002, when it was disbanded due to a series of arrests following an unsuccessful bombing attack in Piraeus, its members assassinated 23 people and carried out a total of 103 attacks. Among the victims were US, British and Turkish nationals. In 2000, British military attaché Stephen Saunders was the group’s last victim.