Let­ter bomb sent to Noor 1 trial judge

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

Bomb dis­posal ex­perts car­ried out a con­trolled ex­plo­sion of a par­cel bomb de­liv­ered yes­ter­day to the home in Ymit­tos, in eastern Athens, of a judge in­volved in the Noor 1 drug smug­gling trial.

Ac­cord­ing to re­ports, the ex­plo­sive de­vice was in an empty book, packed with ra­zors and screws so that, ex­perts say, it would en­sure max­i­mum dam­age.

The at­tack came just a day after a Pi­raeus pros­e­cu­tor rec­om­mended life sen­tences for five sus­pects im­pli­cated in the Noor 1 heroin smug­gling case.

Judge Panayi­o­tis Houzouris re­port­edly no­ti­fied po­lice after fail­ing to rec­og­nize the name of the sen­der on the par­cel, which he con­sid­ered sus­pi­cious as a wire pro­jected from its side.

Po­lice said the par­cel bomb was sim­i­lar to one posted in early June to judge Isi­dora Ponga, who presided over the court coun­cil that re­jected the re­lease re­quest lodged by Evi Statiri – the part­ner of a man charged with be­ing a mem­ber of the Con­spir­acy of the Cells of Fire ur­ban guer­rilla group. No­body had claimed re­spon­si­bil­ity for the par­cel.

How­ever, Chris­tos Tsaka­los, a con­victed mem­ber of the group, re­cently put out a state­ment in which he re­ferred to the Noor 1 trial, say­ing that court de­ci­sions were be­ing dic­tated by big busi­ness in­ter­ests.

The Noor 1 cargo ship was seized in 2014 for smug­gling 2 tons of heroin into the coun­try.

Last week, the court re­jected ap­peals by lawyers rep­re­sent­ing the de­fen­dants for le­niency on ac­count of their pre­vi­ous clean records.

On Wed­nes­day, the Pi­raeus pros­e­cu­tor sought a life sen­tence plus an ad­di­tional 10 years and a 1-mil­lion-euro fine for Makis Yian­nousakis, the for­mer owner of the Noor 1 cargo ship, and Gior­gos Bour­dou­valis, the agent.

The pros­e­cu­tor also rec­om­mended that three Turk­ish de­fen­dants be handed life sen­tences plus 10 years and a 500,000euro fine. He also called for 12-year sen­tences for an­other three de­fen­dants.

The trial was dogged by re­peated de­lays due to a five-month lawyer strike which ended last May.

The sen­tences are sched­uled to be an­nounced on Tues­day, Au­gust 2.

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