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27 Apr, 2021 13:37

Greek MEP stripped of immunity, arrested in Brussels over neo-Nazi criminal conviction

Greek MEP stripped of immunity, arrested in Brussels over neo-Nazi criminal conviction

The European Parliament voted to end the parliamentary immunity of a Greek politician who was given a jail sentence at home for links to a neo-Nazi political group. He was arrested in Belgium.

Ioannis Lagos, who was elected to the European Parliament in 2019 and served as an independent MEP, was stripped of immunity on Monday evening, but the results of the vote were announced on Tuesday.

Greece’s Citizen Protection Ministry confirmed that Lagos was arrested in his home in Brussels, Belgium shortly after the status that shielded him from prosecution was revoked.

Lagos tweeted on Tuesday: “I am in a Belgian police car... being taken to jail.”

Belgian authorities are expected to decide whether to extradite the politician to Greece, where last year he was sentenced to 13 years in prison along with other top members of the Golden Dawn party.

The Golden Dawn has been often described as a far-right and neo-Nazi movement. Founded in the 1980s, it gained power throughout the Greek financial crisis of the 2010s, winning seats in the country’s parliament and at one point becoming Greece’s third-largest political party.

Also on rt.com Greek police launch manhunt as deputy leader of Neo-Nazi Golden Dawn party refuses to report to prison following landmark trial

In 2020, a Greek court ruled that the party’s leaders were effectively running a criminal organization responsible for multiple hate crimes, including attacks on migrants and left-wing activists. The group’s most notorious crime was the murder of rapper and anti-fascist activist Pavlos Fyssas in 2013 by a Golden Dawn member.

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