ATHENS – The spokesman for the ultra far-right Golden Dawn party, whose leaders are facing trial, was stripped of his immunity as a lawmaker on a vote by fellow Members of Parliament.
Ilias Kasidiaris is one of the party’s 18 MPs, all of whom are charged with running or being part of a criminal gang, which they deny.
Kasidiaris, who was acquitted of slapping a female Communist MP on TV – seen live – may also now face prosecution on charges of inciting criminal acts.
The charges date to a speech he gave in May 2011 in the rundown town of Aspropyrgos in western Attica, where he encouraged locals to “get rid of the human garbage,” referring to migrants, which the party is charged of assaulting.
“If you want to de-stink the area you have to become a fist and put up a fight,” Kasidiaris allegedly told said at a pre-election rally.
“Get rid of the human garbage that has robbed, murdered and committed crimes,” he added. “There is no state, no police, no justice, no one to cover you, so get out into the streets,” it was reported he said then.
The vote to lift his immunity was approved 190-18, with 22 voting present and 70 of the 300 lawmakers not showing up, a common occurrence.