St Basil's managers lose fight against giving evidence at an inquest into COVID aged-care deaths

Greek City Times Breaking

Seniors managers of a Greek nursing home where dozens of people died after a catastrophic COVID-19 outbreak will be forced to give evidence in a coronial inquest after losing an appeal in Victoria's highest court.

Key points:

  • The coroner is investigating the deaths of 50 people at St Basil's Aged Care Home in  Fawkner in 2020.
  • Kon Kontis and Vicky Kos refused to give evidence on the basis that they could incriminate themselves.
  • They can make one final appeal to the High Court.

The Court of Appeal today upheld a decision ordering Kon Kontis and Vicky Kos to give evidence in the probe investigating the deaths of 50 people at St Basil's Aged Care Home in Fawkner, in Melbourne's north, in 2020.

Mr Kontis was the chairman of the home at the time, and Ms Kos was the facility manager.

They have argued any appearance at the inquest may lead to self-incrimination.

Their bid to avoid giving evidence came after Worksafe revealed it was conducting a criminal investigation into the deaths and sparked fury among grieving family members.

The pair can still appeal today's decision to the High Court of Australia.

Today, John Karantzis from Carbone Lawyers, representing the families of the residents who died, praised the decision as a "fantastic result".

"The families will be over the moon," Mr Karantzis said.

He said the decision paved the way for the investigation to continue.

"The families need to know what was happening on those days when their loved ones were dying and left alone, cold, dying in their beds at the facility," he said.

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