After crime, punishment must follow

Across the country people were shocked by the cold-blooded murder of a soccer fan in Paeania in March 2007 by a group of hooligans from an opposing team. It was a crime that screamed out for justice and the people of Greece demanded that the guilty parties be punished. The country’s judges face a difficult and important task. They must weigh up all the evidence against any extenuating circumstances and must be as strict as possible in their decision. We cannot tolerate sports fans engaging in turf wars, just as we cannot have soccer clubs supporting hordes of hooligans under the guise of fan associations, especially in this day and age. An example must be made of the person or persons found guilty of the killing. Their sentences should reflect society’s response to the organized crime of hooligans. The soccer clubs also have an obligation to fight the crime that flourishes under their banners, and if they don’t, then the state must oblige them to do so.