Greek far-right MEP arrested in Brussels

Greek far-right MEP arrested in Brussels

Convicted Golden Dawn lawmaker Ioannis Lagos was arrested in his home in Brussels on Tuesday, shortly after a European arrest warrant was issued for the far-right MEP, according to sources.

His extradition will depend on whether he objects to the arrest warrant under Belgian law.

The news comes a few hours after the European Parliament voted to lift his immunity. In the long-awaited vote, which took place late on Monday but whose results were published on Tuesday, 658 MEPs voted in favor, 25 against while 10 abstained.

Lagos was sentenced, along with the leadership of Golden Dawn on 14 October 2020, to 13 years in prison by a Greek court, for running a criminal organization blamed for numerous violent hate crimes.

Another leading member of the former party, Christos Pappas, remains on the run after his conviction.

Golden Dawn was founded as a neo-Nazi group in the 1980s and remained a fringe group until it rose to prominence during the country’s 2010-2018 financial crisis. 

Running on a nationalist platform, it won parliamentary seats in four separate elections and, at its height, became Greece’s third-largest political party. 

It was involved in multiple hate crimes, including brutal street attacks on immigrants and left-wing activists.

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