NEWS

Mother of Veria boy murdered in 2006 asks for exhumation of unidentified remains

The mother of Georgian schoolboy Alex Meshivili, who was killed by bullies in the northern Greek town of Veria in February 2006 and whose body was never recovered, has requested the exhumation of remains found in the cemetery of the village of Rapsomaniki on the outskirts of the Imathia regional capital.

According to reports, a grave digger came forward on Friday night on a television show that investigates real crime and admitted that he had discovered the remains of a body that appeared to belong to a young person while digging a grave four years ago. The body was not dressed nor was it placed in a coffin. He added that he did not report the discovery to the police but told the cemetery's supervisor, who subsequently ordered the body to be reburied in a plot at the cemetery.

Alex Meshivili's mother, who participated in the show that conducted its own investigation into the boy's murder, has requested that the remains be exhumed so that DNA testing can confirm whether or not they belong to Alex, who was 11 years old at the time of his death.

According to testimony from the 2009 trial on the boy's death, five schoolboys aged 13 beat the 11-year-old without intending to kill him but Meshivili died after falling down some stairs.

One of the five boys convicted of the murder told the "Fos sto Tounel" (Light in the Tunnel) show that he and his four friends had repeatedly bullied Alex Meshivili. He admitted that they beat him and chased him until he fell down some stairs and died. The boys then allegedly dumped his body briefly at an abandoned building and later threw it into a river. The 20-year-old said that he did not know who handled the body after that.

The case shocked Greece as it was the first recorded incident of a child killing committed by minors.

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