A Greek court has sparked an “unprecedented racist scandal” after it cleared farmers who shot and wounded 28 Bangladeshi strawberry pickers when they asked to be paid.
In a verdict described as “an outrage and a disgrace” and which led to protests outside the court in the southern city of Patras, the owner of the farm and head foreman were cleared of all charges – which included human trafficking.
The incident in April last year saw farmers turn their shotguns on migrant workers in Manolada who had asked to be recompensed for six months of unpaid labour. Dozens were injured, four of them severely.
Media investigations found they and workers like them had been living and working in squalid conditions without basic sanitation, and the case brought attention to the plight of foreign workers in Greece’s desperate economy.
Yet despite admitting the shooting, two farmers were acquitted yesterday.
Two others were convicted of aggravated assault and illegal use of firearms and given sentences of 14 years and seven months and eight years and seven months – but they too were allowed to walk free from court pending appeals.
The court’s verdict has been roundly criticised by politicians and activists alike, and the victims’ lawyer, Moisis Karabeyidis, …read more
From: infomobile greece