The Justice Ministry on Wednesday responded to reports that the man accused of stabbing to death 32-year-old tax office worker Theodora Zeberi at Athens’s Second Cemetery in the western suburb of Rizoupoli on October 18 had been released from prison in May.
Having come under criticism in recent months over a spike in violent crimes that has been partially attributed to a law for reducing overcrowding at the country’s prisons introduced by the previous minister, Nikos Paraskevopoulos, the ministry on Wednesday clarified that the 58-year-old suspect was not released under the Paraskevopoulos law but because he had served two-thirds of his 12-year sentence on drug-related charges.
The announcement, however, was met with skepticism from opposition parties, which say that the Paraskevopoulos law has led to the release of hundreds of inmates convicted of serious crimes. The head of centrist Potami party, Stavros Theodorakis, asked Justice Minister Stavros Kontonis to show lawmakers the court decision granting the suspect’s release.
The 58-year-old has allegedly confessed to stabbing Zeberi several times with the intent to rob her. He was attacked by a mob yesterday after testifying before an Athens magistrate.