Top court upholds police decision to seize shipowner’s passport

Top court upholds police decision to seize shipowner’s passport

A section of Greece's Council of State on Tuesday ruled that a decision by the Greek Police (ELAS) to seize the passport of a shipowner and football club owner who has been charged with felonies was constitutional.

The shipowner had been charged with running and participating in a criminal gang and drug trafficking and barred from leaving the country in 2018.

However, he asked ELAS's passports' directorate to return his travel documents, arguing that a judicial council had not ratified the travel ban. When ELAS refused, he appealed to the administrative court, asking it to annul the police's decision. 

Last December, a section of the CoS rejected his annulment request and on Tuesday the same section said ELAS was right to reject his request as citizens who have been charged with a crime cannot be issued with a passport even in the event that an existing travel ban is lifted.

Due to the seriousness of the case, the Council of State's plenum will have the final say. 

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