The trial of the Golden Dawn organization resumed on Thursday, with the judges hearing arguments on whether or not the sentences already handed down to the organizations’ members should be suspended.
The sentencing phase of the trial convened in the Athens criminal appeals court at 10:00 on Thursday morning, with the defense lawyers presenting arguments for suspension of the sentences that had been imposed on their clients last week, pending appeal.
The lawyer for Giorgos Roupakias, who was sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of Pavlos Fyssas and another 14 years on additional charges, announced that his client will not submit a request for a suspended sentence, although this is occasionally granted to those facing life sentences.
The court’s decisions will determine whether those who have received prison sentences will be sent directly to jail or remain at liberty pending an appeal. Final decisions are expected either late on Thursday or on Friday.
During this phase, the lawyers are allowed to examine witnesses and present arguments to show that it is not necessary to incarcerate their clients, or supply evidence of the damage that incarceration will inflict on their family life or health.
If the court does decide on the incarceration of the convicted Golden Dawn members, their actual time in prison, depending on the severity of their sentence, will for most range between three and 4.8 years due to laws allowing their release after serving three-fifths of their sentence and after subtracting the time when they were jailed awaiting trial.