Fresh allegations jolt theater world

Fresh allegations jolt theater world

With new lawsuits being filed for incidents that are not statute-barred, rapid developments are expected in the field of prosecutorial investigations into allegations of sexual abuse, even against minors, in the Greek theater world.

Against the dire backdrop of dozens of complaints by men and women against prominent theater directors and actors, the issue was further aggravated with a new complaint filed concerning the rape in 2010 of a 14-year-old.

The lawsuit filed with the Athens Prosecutor’s Office on Friday is being carefully evaluated, as any criminal offense established is not statute-barred, and can be prosecuted.

The complaint filed by the alleged victim describes his rape by the well-known theater figure when he was 14 years old. He also said that he himself does not belong to the arts world and that he met the alleged perpetrator in the area of ​​Metaxourgeio, near central Athens. He said he made his acquaintance because he was in awe of the director and actor, who later raped him in his home.

An arrest warrant for the accused has not been ruled out if the evidence stacks up.

The lawyer representing the alleged victim has described the accused as “dangerous,” warning that he may continue his illegal activities. 

Meanwhile, the government and the Culture Minister Lina Mendoni came under a barrage of fire on Friday from opposition parties over alleged foot-dragging in the case of the recently resigned artistic director of the National Theater, Dimitris Lignadis.

In a press conference Friday Mendoni described him as a “dangerous person” who had “deceived her.” 

“From the moment the rumors started, we pressed him hard to tell us the truth. He deceived us, he deceived me. He tried to convince us that he had nothing to do with all this, that the rumors do not concern him,” she said.

This was too little, too late for SYRIZA, which referred to “delayed statements of condemnation,” pointing the finger at both Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis and Mendoni, who, it said, is a personal friend of Lignadis and tried to protect him. 

“I had demanded the resignation of Mrs Mendoni. Why? Because for two weeks she covered up these allegations, the accusations, until the artistic director of the National Theater himself resigned,” said SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras.

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