Arrests for AEK-Dinamo Zagreb football hooligan violence reach 104 following fan death

AEK fan death dinamo zagreb

The number arrested for the deadly fight between fans of AEK on one side and Dinamo Zagreb and Panathinaikos on the other in the Athens neighbourhood of Nea Philadelphia has risen to 104 on Wednesday.

Added to those arrested initially during the incidents on Monday night were five Croats detained on Tuesday night in Igoumenitsa and a 19-year-old Croat caught at the Kakavia border crossing as he attempted to flee Greece on a coach headed for Tirana.

All six were taken to Athens and appeared before a public prosecutor, and the others were arrested in connection with the case.

In total, 103 have been brought before a prosecutor, of which 97 are Croats. There are also two Greeks, one Albanian, an Austrian national, a German and a Bosnian national, while the remaining Croat to be charged is still being treated under guard at Erythros Stavros hospital in Athens.

An internal inquiry will be ordered into the actions of the Hellenic Police following the violent incidents initiated by Dinamo Zagreb supporters and their Greek accomplices in Nea Philadelphia, sources revealed on Tuesday.

The clashes erupted after Dinamo supporters, despite a ban on the movement of team supporters from Croatia to the AEK stadium, managed to reach Athens by car and meet Panathinaikos F.C. supporters at Irene station, from where they took the line 1 metro train to Pefkakia and walked to the AEK stadium in Nea Philadelphia to attack AEK supporters.

MAT riot police forces had already been mobilised but arrived after the eruption of violence in which an AEK supporter was knifed and shortly afterwards died. Police said the man was hit with a sharp implement in the arm and died of uncontrollable bleeding.

The clashes were also responsible for starting a fire in a stream bed that was put out by the fire brigade, and the police were forced to use tear gas to disperse and then apprehend those involved.

Supreme Court prosecutor orders preliminary inquiry into clashes in Athens.

Supreme Court Prosecutor Georgia Adilini on Tuesday ordered the Athens Appeals Court Prosecutor and the Athens First-instance Court Prosecutors' department to launch an urgent preliminary investigation and supervise the police inquiry into Monday night's violent clashes between soccer hooligans in Athens, in which one 29-year-old AEK fan was murdered, and another eight people were seriously injured.

She instructed them to collect as much evidence as possible to help identify the person who committed the murder and determine whether other crimes had also been committed, such as forming a criminal organisation or inciting others to criminal acts.

Adilini also asked the prosecutors to look into media reports that the Croatian soccer supporters had been spotted on the national highway and discreetly placed under surveillance by the Hellenic Police, asking how they could nevertheless elude this surveillance to reach the crime scene.

Lastly, she said they should ensure a public prosecutor was present when AEK Athens and DNK Dinamo Zagreb Champions' League match is held.

For his part, the spokesperson for the main opposition SYRIZA-Progressive Alliance, Stergios Kalpakis, said on ERT1 television on Wednesday: "In any other European country, [Citizen Protection Minister Yiannis Economou] would already be history, he would have already resigned."

Offering his condolences to the family of the victim, he said the death of 29-year-old Michalis was a "tragic event that has shocked us all" and added:

"The responsibilities for this unprecedented fiasco are immense. We are talking about inconceivable ineptitude. The sense of insecurity citizens feel is made worse by Mr Economou's stance when he says that he bears no political responsibility for this event."

"We have roughly 200 neonazi hooligans known to the authorities, with a history of violence, entering the country, crossing half of Greece in a convoy to reach Athens, boarding the metro to reach Nea Philadelphia, spreading terror and murdering a young person. All this undisturbed!" Kalpakis said.

All this happened despite a UEFA ban on the organised movement of fans and the fact that there had been ample warning from the department for sports violence and the police in Montenegro, with information on where the hooligans would be staying and their car licence plates, and even a warning from the metro train operator of the presence of armed hooligans on metro line 1, he added.

Kalpakis stressed that the minister could not simply say he was not responsible for any of it, especially when New Democracy had been in power for four years and had been re-elected in June with security and the 'efficient state' as flagship issues.

READ MORE: Lamia: Police alert for "Marseille hooligans" - They were just tourists.


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