Mistakes made in hooligan probe

Supreme Court prosecutor Giorgos Sanidas admitted yesterday that mistakes were made during the preliminary probe into last month’s deadly brawl between some 500 hooligans, but he insisted that this would not lead to suspects being let off the hook on legal technicalities. It was expected that charges against the people suspected of beating and stabbing 22-year-old Panathinaikos fan Michalis Filopoulos to death would have been filed at the end of last week but Sanidas said that the process would take another week. He explained that the police took sworn statements from the suspects but this practice is reserved for witnesses. Suspects should not be questioned under oath, Sanidas said, as any testimony that is self-incriminating will not be admissible in court. «The problem is not that mistakes were made, the issue is to find a solution and correct these mistakes,» the prosecutor said. The police and the prosecutor’s office had been at odds over the last few days after claims that some suspects would escape trial because of mistakes made during their questioning. One service blamed the other for the oversight. Sanidas also warned police to stop issuing details about the number of suspects that are likely to face charges. Five Olympiakos fans are due to face a prosecutor tomorrow on suspicion that they were the main instigators of Filopoulos’s death in Paeania, northeast of Athens, last month.

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