Murder of Alkis: violent criminals in the guise of fans

On the afternoon of September 9, 2021, Ruslan P., a 32-year-old member of the Panathinaikos fanclub, was walking along Alexandras Avenue with a friend when he saw a group of ten people moving menacingly in their direction.

The authorities quickly reacted to the situation. Just 2 days later, Supreme Court Deputy Prosecutor Zacharias Kokkinakis issued a circular on Friday demanding that those involved in violence in sports be brought to justice within 30 days of their arrest.

The same circular stated that when multiple perpetrators are involved in a sporting violence incident, they should be investigated as to whether their actions amounted to the formation of a criminal organization (and this increases the punishment). He added that sentences should not be overturned on appeal.

One of them had a gun pointed at him and Ruslan tried to take it away. The militant fired three shots at him, one of the bullets seriously wounded him in the back.

Twenty days later, the police visited Ruslan at the Evangelismos hospital to take a statement about the incident. “During the interrogation, he described the attempted murder, but could not identify the persons who committed the crime. When asked who exactly shot him, he replied: “I don’t want to say anything else. I want to stop the interrogation.”

Four people have been arrested for participating in an attack organized by fans and fans of Panathinaikos, in an unprecedented armed conflict between the police and ardent fans of the same team!

Fans from rival Piraeus club burned Panathinaikos fans’ motorcycles

The bloody incident was regarded by the security services as clear evidence of an escalation of violence among fan clubs, and served as a pretext for the initiative of Panathinaikos to disband the army of organized fans. Those arrested by this time already had a criminal record, confirming that this was not the first time they had been involved in hooligan actions in the ranks of football fans. All four detainees were charged with clashes with rival fan clubs, and the 47-year-old accused of shooting Ruslan P. was prosecuted, incl. as a member of a criminal group of racketeers who protected the bars and restaurants of Attica.

On the picture: Fans of PAOK and AEK staged a massacre before the final of the Greek Cup in May 2017

This, in fact, is not the first time that the relationship between fans and organized crime has been clarified. Five years ago, the Office for the Investigation of Extortions of the Criminal Investigation Department of the capital arrested ten “jocks” who, in addition to protecting the shops of the capital, provided protection for members of the fan clubs of the teams Panachaic and Panelefsiniakos, mostly during away matches. One of the defendants participated in episodes with opposing fans for a fee and terrorized the players of opposing teams in order to influence the results of matches.

The dark side of fan violence has once again come to the fore in the most dramatic way: 19 year old fan of Aris, Alkis Campanos, was fatally shot by a bully from the PAOK fan club. As his friends describe, the young man had nothing to do with organized “armies” of fan clubs. And while the tragic event may have shocked Greek society, for those who closely follow what has been happening inside fan clubs lately, the fatal injury of a young man in clashes between fans of opposing teams, unfortunately, was not something out of the ordinary, rather surprising that this has not happened before.

“Recently, we have been witnessing a qualitative modernization of the actions of hooligans using edged weapons,” comments the publication. “Kathimerini” head of the Attica Security Directorate, and cites a series of incidents that have been recorded over the past two to three months:

On November 24, for example, during the Panathinaikos women’s volleyball match against Ostrava in Marusi, police officers from the DI.AS Rapid Response Team. arrested 57 Panathinaikos fans who had knives, screwdrivers, axes, hammers and other dangerous items that were clearly not intended for cultural recreation. On January 15, 2022, on the sidelines of the Apollo-Aris football match, 87 fans of the host team were detained, 15 of them were arrested. They had with them: 11 axes, 13 knives, screwdrivers, Molotov cocktails, bats, helmets, etc.

There are about 300 hooligans in the Attica metropolitan area alone on the “black list” of the Subdivision for Combating Violence at Sports Venues.

One of the fan club members’ accounts posted a photo of about 30 young people in the area of ​​Nea Smyrni. Their faces are covered with hoods and helmets, crowbars, bats and other items are in their hands. The caption to the corresponding photo explains: “The Panthers of Panionios went out to hunt the Panathinaikos before the water polo match.” In fact, many of the attacks on organized fan clubs, both in Attica and Thessaloniki, are in response to previous skirmishes of hooligans, which the protagonists themselves wrote about on social networks, along with comments such as: “Upload and say, we will go to the streets. We are close every day. Where are you?”.

“Equipment” of members of the Attica fancubes found during a search last week

Just twenty-four hours before Alkis Campanos was mortally wounded, angry Aris fans attacked a PAOK fan club during a New Year’s cake cutting event. Something similar happened last Sunday in Perama. AEK fans ambushed Olympiacos fans who went to their fan club’s premises for a New Year’s cake. One of the most recognizable executives of GATE 7 just managed to jump out of his car just as the attackers set it on fire. The ambush was set up in response to an attack by Olympiacos fans on AEK fans during a Group A1 basketball match in Liosia.

From September to today, more than 300 Attica big team fan club members have been taken to the security authorities, 150 of them have been arrested for participating in incidents, possession of weapons, flares and so on. “Of these, 30% are minors, the rest are between the ages of 20 and 30,” a competent police source explained, adding that the “black list” of the sub-department for combating violence at sports facilities includes about 300 people, the most active hooligans of all fan clubs of Attica.

Political extremists

Finally, the equation of fan violence is not without an element of hooligans’ association with political extremists. On the account of the nationalist organization in social networks, a photo was published against the backdrop of the Panathinaikos fan club “GATE 13”, in which men with faces hidden by hoods hold banners with the slogan: “There is only one solution in Turkish provocations: to reach the borders of Asia Minor together with the army” .

Accordingly, they also posted a photo with “colleagues from AEK, brandishing Molotov cocktails with faces covered with threatening masks, with the caption:” AEK, violence, terrorism. slang, all over Europe. A day later, the Hooliganscene page reported the tragic event. Paying “homage” to the unfortunate young man, the authors of the publication under the photo of the banner held by the fans of the post group wrote: “Only losers use knives.”

Quick trials, tougher penalties for football fans

The authorities quickly reacted to the situation. Just 2 days later, Supreme Court Deputy Prosecutor Zacharias Kokkinakis issued a circular on Friday demanding that those involved in violence in sports be brought to justice within 30 days of their arrest.

The same circular stated that when multiple perpetrators are involved in a sporting violence incident, they should be investigated as to whether their actions amounted to the formation of a criminal organization (and this increases the punishment). He added that sentences should not be overturned on appeal.

Flowers, club shirts and candles at the site of the death of Alkis Campanos

Politics and situation

In this situation, it is clear that the ruling party is using the situation in order to improve its bad reputation. Everyone understands that such decisions are at the level of the political leadership. And with elections looming on the horizon, the many economic, political and reputational failures of the current Mitsotakis administration must be compensated in any way, otherwise the loss is inevitable.

Let’s hope that the current authorities have enough political will to clear the “Augean stables” of the Greek fan movement, separating the “wheat from the chaff” and not destroying the good that is in them for the company.

Flowers, club shirts and candles at the site of the death of Alkis Campanos

Politics and situation

In this situation, it is clear that the ruling party is using the situation in order to improve its bad reputation. Everyone understands that such decisions are at the level of the political leadership. And with elections looming on the horizon, the many economic, political and reputational failures of the current Mitsotakis administration must be compensated in any way, otherwise the loss is inevitable.

Let’s hope that the current authorities have enough political will to clear the “Augean stables” of the Greek fan movement, separating the “wheat from the chaff” and not destroying the good that is in them for the company.



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