The episodes of PAOK fans in the derby with Olympiacos were barred due to the completion of 8 years

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In the archive the case file for the episodic football match between PAOK and Olympiakos for the Greek Cup, in March 2016, due to the lapse of 8 years and as a consequence of the statute of limitations for misdemeanor acts. The game was interrupted when “Dikephalos” fans stormed the Toumba pitch, protesting the non-awarding of a penalty in favor of their team.

The constant postponements in the trial of the case at first instance and h delay in finalization of the first instance decisionwith which 23 people were convicted, seem to be the main reasons that led to this development, as pointed out by lawyers who represented them.

The case was heard in the first instance in December 2022, six and a half years after the incidents took place, while the indictment initially included 36 people who became accused after many months of investigations by the Thessaloniki Sports Violence Sub-Directorate of EL.AS. For the identification of many of them, material from the closed circuit monitoring of the Toumba stadium was used.

The Three-member Criminal Court of Thessaloniki finally ruled 23 PAOK fans guilty and sentenced them to prison terms of 5 to 16 months, suspended for three years. Twenty of them appealed to be judged in second degree by the Court of Appeal. It took 14 months for the decision to be written down and filed, so the determination of the appellate trial followed, before the Three-member Misdemeanor Appeals Court of Thessaloniki, just a few days before the eight-year period expired, with a shortening of the summoning period for the accused due to the risk of statute of limitations.

At the start of the trial at the Court of Appeal, the defense attorneys for the 20 defendants submitted appeal of invalidity of the procedure, because, according to what they argued, the deadline stipulated by the Criminal Procedure for summoning the accused was not observed (in this case, it specifies a minimum of eight days). The judges accepted the above objection of illegal subpoena, declaring the discussion inadmissible.

Under the above conditions, time limits did not allow the case to be re-entered for trial by another (corresponding) court and with a different composition, so, as the advocates explained, it became the only way to stop the criminal prosecution due to completion of the eight-year term (it expired on March 2).

At the same time, with the discharge of criminal responsibilities, the restrictive conditions are lifted for the 20 defendants which had been imposed on them by the first instance decision regarding the ban on watching their team’s matches and their simultaneous appearance at the police station (two hours before and two hours after the matches). These conditions were valid until the following December.

Source: RES-MPE

Source: Sport Fm

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