The trial for the Golden Dawn case continues, with tensions being raised in the court room. Only a little while ago, as reported by Proto Thema, the defence attorney of the accused Ioannis Lagos, Konstantinos Plevris, gave a Nazi salute in court and immediately after left.
The incident happened while Magda Fyssas was testifying in court.
Pavlos Fyssas' mother said in her testimony: "Is Lagos a political prisoner? The bones of the political prisoners will crack."
Applause immediately broke out in the room.
"Would you dare give a Nazi salute if you were abroad?" said Ms. Fyssas, with the lawyer giving another Nazi salute before leaving the courtroom.
“Aren't you ashamed fascist? Aren't you ashamed of so many crimes?" shouted the attendees as the trial was interrupted.
Golden Dawn was a far-right ultranationalist political party in Greece which rose to prominence during Greece's financial crisis of 2009, becoming the third most popular party in the Greek parliament in the January 2015 election.
Its support plunged though and it failed to enter parliament in the 2019 election.
The criminal trial against the leaders, frequently described as the largest Nazi trial since Nuremberg, lasted more than five years.
Nikolaos Michaloliakos began the foundations of what would become Golden Dawn in 1980, when he published the first issue of the right-wing, pro-military junta journal by the name Chrysi Avgi.
In this context, Golden Dawn had its origins in the movement that worked towards a return to right-wing military dictatorship in Greece.
Following an investigation into the 2013 murder of anti-fascist rapper Pavlos Fyssas by a self-identified member, Michaloliakos and several other Golden Dawn MPs and members were arrested and held in pre-trial detention on suspicion of forming a criminal organisation.
The trial began on 20 April 2015. Golden Dawn later lost all of its remaining seats in the Greek Parliament in the 2019 Greek legislative election.
A 2020 survey showed the party's popularity plummeting to 1.5%, down from 2.9% in the previous year's elections, and a peak of 7.0%.
On 7 October 2020, Michaloliakos and six other party leaders were convicted for heading a criminal organisation. The other 61 defendants were found guilty of participating in a criminal organisation. The court described the convicted as a criminal organization "dressed in the mantle of a political party".
The court found Michaloliakos, Giannis Lagos, Ilias Kasidiaris, Christos Pappas, Artemios Matthaiopoulos, Ilias Panagiotaros, and Giorgios Germenis guilty on the charge of directing a criminal organisation.
The court found sufficient evidence to find the rest of the sixty-eight defendants guilty of participation in a criminal organisation. Eighteen of these defendants were former members of parliament.
The court found Anastasios-Marios Anadiotis, Giorgios Dimou, Elpidoforos Kalaritis, Yoannis Vasilios Komianos, Konstantinos Korkovilis, Anastasios Michalaros, Giorgios Patelis (the secretary of the Nikaia Battalion), Giorgios Skalos, Giorgios Stambelos, Leon Tsalikis, Athanasios Tsorvas, Nikolaos Tsorvas, and Aristotelis Chrisafitis guilty of the murder of Pavlos Fyssas.
The court had earlier acknowledged the guilt of Giorgios Roupakias.