Friday, April 19, 2019

Prison time for Esphigmenou firebombers

THESSALONIKI (TNH) – An appeals court in the northern city of Thessaloniki has upheld the bombing convictions of a monk and the abbot of a 1,000-year-old monastery deemed schismatic by the Greek Orthodox church, and cut their sentences from 20 to 17 years.

The decision followed a firebomb attack in 2013 on a court bailiff and his brother trying to evict the monks from a building in Karyes, capital of the Mt. Athos monastic community. Neither man was hurt.

The court convicted Antypas, one of the Esphigmenou Monastery’s 118 monks, of throwing firebombs and Abbot Methodios of incitement. Another six monks, sentenced to 10 years as accessories, had their terms cut Thursday by seven months.

None were present in court. All were free pending the appeal trial, and are being sought by police.
And also...
(Romfea) - 17 years’ imprisonment and a fine of EUR 600. This is the ruling of the Mixed Jury Court of Appeal of Thessaloniki to the instigators and perpetrators of the Molotov cocktails attack in July 2013, against riot police, in the buildings of the Esphigmenou monastery in Mount Athos.

In a statement issued by the Esphigmenou monastery in Mount Athos, it is noted that “regarding the Molotov cocktail attacks in July 2013 against riot police from the schismatic illegal occupants in Mount Athos. The Mixed Court of Appeal of Thessaloniki, from a lengthy and exhausting two-month process, today unanimously issued its ruling. Methodios – Matthew Papalamprakopoulos and Antipas Fragoulopoulos, who instigated the attack, were sentenced to seventeen (17) years’ imprisonment and a fine of EUR 600, while six members of the illegal occupation, who were accessory, were sentenced to nine (9) years and five month’s imprisonment.

The Esphigmenou monastery faces the development calmly, and prays to God give wisdom and prudence to the responsible for the illegal occupation, in order to bring this paradoxical and anti-monastic situation to an end, peacefully and without unnecessary and impassable rivalries. Their tendency to hostility is the reason for the current penalties.

But let’s look ahead. Let us pray to learn from this fact and to find some peace, so that the monastery can finally operate at its seat and its premises where its invaluable relics are located.”

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