Greek Police Crackdown on Hooliganism After Riot Officer's Death

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During a volleyball match in December 2023, Greek police made 60 arrests related to hooligan violence that resulted in the tragic death of a riot officer, Dimitris Mallios, the country's police chief, announced on Monday.

"Combating sports violence remains our unwavering priority," Mallios emphasized in a statement.

The victim, 31-year-old Yiorgos Lyggeridis, was struck by a marine flare that was discharged outside a sports arena during the Olympiacos-Panathinaikos volleyball match near Piraeus. Lyggeridis succumbed to his injuries at a hospital, prompting the closure of stadiums nationwide for several weeks.

Mallios disclosed that a four-month police probe uncovered links between hooligans and organized crime. Over 150 individuals are believed to be connected to the incident.

Recent years have witnessed numerous incidents of violence and deaths at sporting events in Greece. In August, a supporter of the AEK Athens football club, age 29, was fatally stabbed during clashes between Athens and Dinamo Zagreb fans on the night before a qualifying match for the Champions League.

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