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Georgoulis Case: Revelations continue after Chronopoulou's complaint

Featured Georgoulis Case: Revelations continue after Chronopoulou's complaint

Now independent MEP, Alexis Georgoulis, is in the middle of a veritable legal and political storm, after Chronopoulouregistered her grievances with Belgian police.

Reports against Alexis Georgoulis have taken the form of an avalanche, after Eleni Chronopoulou's complaint of rape and physical violence against him. But apart from this complaint, very soon the now independent MEP will be asked to face three new complaints coming from the workers in his office.

The new complaints come from employees in the office of Alexis Georgoulis - then SYRIZA MEP - since his first months in Brussels. The first case concerns an intern in his office, who alleges abusive behavior.

"He cursed and threw tantrums"

One of the new complaints comes from a man who belonged to the permanent staff of the SYRIZA MEP's office. According to information, this man reported the actor for inappropriate behavior.

"There was a complaint to a competent service of the European Parliament about mistreatment at work by a colleague around the beginning of his term. He cursed and had outbursts," says a new testimony about Alexis Georgoulis, according to the ERT report.

How Georgoulis reacted to Chronopoulou's complaint

Alexis Georgoulis denies the accusations and in his first statement after Mrs. Chronopoulou's complaint, he spoke of an "obviously false and slanderous complaint".

"Unfortunately, we live in difficult and dangerous times. To my great surprise, I am informed that an obviously false and slanderous complaint has been filed against me for an incident that allegedly happened three years ago.

In the face of this false and insulting attack, which is carried out - probably not by chance - a few days before the national elections, I intend to fight my battle in justice, for the truth and the restoration of my name, requesting the removal of my MEP immunity.

In this context and because I do not at all want to influence the struggle of SYRIZA-Progressive Alliance, at all levels, with a purely personal issue, I place myself at the disposal of the party's organs and submit my resignation as a member of the party as well as from the Eurogroup of SYRIZA-PS" said Mr. Georgoulis.

When Eleni Chronopoulou "broke" her silence

With a shocking post, Eleni Chronopoulou spoke about what she is complaining about, stressing that despite the fact that it is a painful procedure, "I did it considering that I owe it to myself but also to every woman who may find herself in a similar position". .

"My complaint was made the day after the incident, providing the necessary information (forensic reports, etc.) and 4 months later, in May 2020, I felt ready to give the name of the abuser to the Belgian authorities, who are also the alone responsible for handling the case" notes Mrs. Chronopoulou.

She also referred to the leaking of her name, letting loose barbs at those who "pretend to be human rights defenders, on the altar of political wrangling to put me in the midst of vulgar and infuriating attacks".

"I am in politics to fight, through PASOK-KINAL, for my ideas and principles and I do not wish any of my public presence to be determined by this unpleasant case for me. The time has come for the feeling of shame and guilt not to burden the victims, but the perpetrators of similar incidents and those who tolerate them" concludes Eleni Chronopoulou.

The penalty provided for by the Belgian penal code

The Belgian criminal code provides for severe penalties for the crime of rape. “The penalty set by the Belgian criminal code is 5 to 10 years in prison for rape. There are many more that are exposed in Greece.

If it's 5 years we're talking about 3 in prison, we're not talking about months in prison," the lawyers say. Mr. Georgoulis, through his lawyers, states that he has absolute confidence in the Belgian judicial system, with which he intends to cooperate actively.

When will the case go to court

The case of the Greek MEP will reach the courts after his immunity is lifted. The first step to do this is to have the case examined by the Legal Affairs Committee of the European Parliament.

A special counsel should then be appointed who will be briefed on the case file and then make his recommendation on the lifting of the immunity of Alexis Georgoulis. Even then, however, the committee is very likely to ask for clarification on points in the case file.

Doing so means that the lifting of immunity will be delayed even further. When the case passes the Commission stage, it will go to the Plenary of the European Parliament, which will take the final decision on the lifting of immunity.