Court reduces term for racist killers, prompting protests


Athens appeals court on Monday commuted life sentences for two men convicted in 2014 for the murder of a 27-year-old Pakistani national while he was cycling to work to terms of 21 years and 5 months, prompting protests. 

Christos Steriopoulos and Dionysis Liakopoulos had been convicted to life in prison after stabbing Luqman Shehzad seven times on January 17, 2013, in the Athens neighborhood of Petralona, in what both courts ruled was a racist crime. 

The two had also been accused of being members of neo-Nazi Golden Dawn and are on trial in a separate case concerning the party’s suspected illegal activities.

However, the court did not connect the crime in question to the activities of Golden Dawn. 

Immediately after the verdict was read out, riot police officers entered the courtroom and ushered out the protesters who were shouting "fascists," referring to Golden Dawn and their supporters.