From A Las Barricadas (October 15, 2010):
At 11:20 a.m. on September 17, 2010, four people in ski masks robbed a bank at gunpoint in the small town of Psachna on the island of Euboea, some 150 kilometers north of Athens. A half-hour later, on a country road near the island’s capital Chalcis, a 27-year-old man, a 28-year-old man, and a 35-year-old woman were arrested. They were brought to the Chalcis police station, where the men—Alexandros Kosivas and Michalis Traikapis—were charged with the armed bank robbery and the woman was charged with “aiding and abetting fugitives.” The charges were based largely on the comrades’ connection to the anarchist milieu (Traikapis was one of the Thessaloniki 7, along with two Spanish comrades and others, arrested during the riots surrounding the 2003 EU summit in that city and finally released thanks to a lengthy hunger strike) and dubious witness testimony (one of the witnesses, a kiosk attendant, supposedly remembered one of the comrades—just prior to the robbery—asking: “Excuse me, but where is the bank?”). The comrades didn’t have any weapons or “loot” on them at the time of the arrests, while searches of their Athens homes revealed nothing more than “ski masks, four 9 mm bullets, and other objects that are being investigated.” Nevertheless, Kosivas and Traikapis are currently in prison, while the woman was released on probation. It’s expected that they will soon write something that states their position regarding the charges, their political identity, etc.
Last summer, two people from the Athens anti-authoritarian milieu were arrested on the island of Rhodes and charged with a bank robbery. One of them recently wrote a letter explaining what happened.
On August 16, 2010, I was arrested in Rhodes and charged with robbing an ATEbank. Because I am not limited by the perceived duality of “innocence/guilt,” and because I refused to cooperate with the authorities, the prosecutor and judge unanimously decided to imprison me. Before that, I was subjected to a number of draining interrogations by the uniformed servants of Power, both local and from Athens. The investigators were apparently under the control of the National Intelligence Service and sent specially from the Exarcheia police station to identify me and share information. They also tried, in vain, to implicate some of my personal friends and comrades in the case. They then locked me up in the Rhodes police dungeons, which is unusual. I was “visited” there by two psychologists, who examined me and put together what’s known as a “psychological profile.” Suddenly, they decided to move me to the transfer office on Petrou Ralli Street in Athens, where the people in charge refused to let me know which prison they would be taking me to. After an exhausting stay, they told me I’d be going to Alikarnassos, and it was only at the last minute that I was able to notify my family and friends about my destination. All the transfers have taken place in the manner we know all about, crushing every last bit of human dignity, while the prison was certainly not chosen by chance. It’s due to these reasons that I haven’t had time to state my position regarding the case. The judicial report still hasn’t been finalized, and they are continuing to collect evidence. Therefore, when I am able, I will write more extensively about my stance on several matters, generally and with regard to the movement.
I send comradely regards to everyone who stood by me and helped me in various ways. Additionally, I salute everyone participating in the very important initiative to create a prisoner solidarity fund, which I also took part in from the beginning.
Free everyone inside
Solidarity with all persecuted comrades
Solidarity with fighting prisoner Vangelis Pallis
—Thodoris Delis, Alikarnassos prison
Bonanno and Stratigopoulos
The trial of Alfredo Bonanno and Christos Stratigopoulos, charged with an October 1, 2009 bank robbery in Trikala and imprisoned since then, will be held on November 22. If anyone wants to support them with a monetary contribution, it can be wired to the account that was set up in Italy immediately after their arrest:
Postal Account No. 23852353
Payable to A. Medeot, CP 3431, Trieste, Italy
Any questions can be directed to:
From A Las Barricadas (October 15, 2010):
All six comrades imprisoned in the Revolutionary Struggle case were recently “invited” to testify in front of the prosecutor, so they were all transferred to Athens. The three who deny the charges (Christoforos Kortesis, Sarantos Nikitopoulos, and Evangelos “Vangelis” Stathopoulos) asked for a postponement of the hearing, while the three who acknowledged their participation in Revolutionary Struggle (Constantinos “Costas” Gournas, Nikolaos “Nikos” Maziotis, and Panayiota “Pola” Roupa) refused to attend.
Maziotis: “I refuse to accept the prosecutor’s subpoena for additional testimony regarding the case involving the revolutionary organization called Revolutionary Struggle, of which I am a member. I do not accept the subpoena because I have nothing criminal to declare. Revolutionaries do not testify in front of State criminals.”
Roupa: “I am in prison for being a revolutionary and struggling against the current criminal system. I do not recognize your charges and I have nothing to declare or apologize for. Revolutionary Struggle is a revolutionary organization that I am proud to be a part of. The terrorists are all those who constitute the modern regime of representative democracy, capitalism, and the market economy.”
Gournas: “As a member of Revolutionary Struggle, I refuse to attend the appeal hearing in Athens. I consent to no interrogation, whether by the torturers of the Anti-Terrorist Squad or the authorized servants of the regime.”
The prosecutor said he will be “visiting” all six in prison. On October 14, an independent committee of prosecutors and appeals court judges discussed whether or not to extend the period of preventive detention for the accused. According to Greek law, this occurs in every case, more or less six months after the initial arrest. There has already been a demonstration in front of the appeals court, and there was also one in front of Korydallos Prison on October 19. Both demonstrations were in keeping with the slogan: “If the innocent deserve our solidarity, then the guilty deserve it even more!”
On Saturday, October 9, Gournas began a hunger strike to demand his permanent transfer to Korydallos in Athens and thus ease—at least a little—the situation he and his family find themselves in. Despite the fact that Gournas is the father of 22-month-old twins, after his arrest he was immediately transferred to Trikala Prison, more than 400 kilometers away from Athens. Maziotis has begun a hunger strike of his own in solidarity with Gournas. As a further gesture of solidarity, the anarchists currently locked up in Korydallos (Nikitopoulos, Stathopoulos, Harilaos “Haris” Hatzimichelakis, Alexandros Kosivas, Aris Seirinidis, Christos Stratigopoulos, and Michalis Traikapis) plus Yiannis Dimitrakis in Domokos Prison and some “social” prisoners—among them the famous Albanian “bandit” Alket Rizai, famous for having escaped Korydallos twice by helicopter alongside Vassilis Paleokostas, the most wanted bank robber in Greece—have been refusing prison food since October 9. Alfredo Bonanno is also supporting our comrades’ initiative, but his frail health doesn’t allow him to abstain from eating.
On July 24, Lambros-Victor was born. His parents are Roupa and Maziotis. After Maziotis’ hunger strike this summer, he is now able to visit Roupa and his son every Sunday. Maziotis is in a special block at Korydallos, while Roupa and the baby boy are in the women’s block at the same prison. Their son’s name is an homage to comrade Lambros Fountas, who was killed by police last March, and Roupa’s father, who was an antifascist guerrilla saboteur during the German occupation and subsequent civil war.