Kalamata: Trial over boat accident with tons of of deaths discontinued | EUROtoday

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As of: May 21, 2024 4:24 p.m

After a critical boat accident within the Mediterranean through which tons of of refugees died, the authorized course of is stalling. A Greek courtroom has now dropped expenses in opposition to the suspected smugglers, saying it has no jurisdiction.

In the trial surrounding one of many worst ship accidents within the Mediterranean, the costs in opposition to 9 defendants have been dropped. The courtroom in Greece declared that it had no jurisdiction after two representatives of the Greek coast guard mentioned that the accident occurred in worldwide waters.

The overloaded trawler “Adriana” sank off the Greek coast in June final 12 months; solely 104 folks have been rescued. Up to 600 persons are mentioned to have misplaced their lives.

Nine Egyptians who survived the catastrophe have been charged with manslaughter, membership in a legal group and aiding and abetting unlawful entry. The males had beforehand at all times protested their innocence: They themselves had paid to set sail for Europe on the rusty fishing boat from the Libyan port metropolis of Tobruk. The 21 and 37 12 months olds have been in custody for eleven months. If convicted, they might have confronted life in jail.

The defendants have been recognized as smugglers

According to the coast guard and public prosecutor's workplace, the defendants have been recognized as smugglers by different survivors of the accident based mostly on pictures. They are mentioned to have steered the boat and typically used violence to make sure peace and order on board. According to survivors, a lot of the migrants have been trapped beneath deck and have been unable to free themselves in time. The sea on the website of the accident is round 5,000 meters deep.

After the accident, there was additionally criticism of the Greek coast guard, which was accused of not bringing the boat to security. The officers mentioned they’d provided assist a number of occasions, however the crew rejected it, saying they wished to go to Italy, not Greece.

Open questions concerning the deployment of the coast guard

It was mentioned that the water cops didn’t wish to pressure the boat into tow – for worry that panic might get away on board the fully overcrowded cutter. According to some witnesses, the coast guard nonetheless took the boat in tow, whereupon panic really broke out and the cutter overturned. The Greek authorities deny the allegations.

There are nonetheless many unanswered questions within the case and investigations into the actions of the Greek authorities are ongoing. The EU border safety company Frontex and the NGO Alarm Phone reported to the Greek authorities that the “Adriana” was within the Greek search and rescue zone.

Lawyers: Made scapegoats of our purchasers

Lawyers for the accused males mentioned their purchasers had been made scapegoats to distract from the misconduct of the Greek coast guard, which didn’t launch an efficient rescue operation after the accident.

Their purchasers have been additionally arrested lower than 24 hours after the ship sank and on the idea of solely 9 witness statements, a few of which weren’t translated appropriately. According to the legal professionals, some survivors mentioned they have been pressured by Greek police to establish the suspects in blurred pictures.