A riot police officer (MAT) has been found guilty of causing bodily harm to photojournalist Tatiana Bolari in 2011. The head of Greek photojournalists’ union Marios Lolos said that
this was the first time that a riot police officer was being punished for violent behavior targeting a photojournalist. He said the issue of riot police attacks on photojournalists had been the topic of an exhibition mounted by Greek photojournalists in Brussels
It is a well known fact that one of the dangers of covering riots and protests is being at risk from attacked by the police. Lolos himself was seriously injured by a police baton in 2010. He suffered severe head injuries that required surgery and still suffers from loss of hearing.
Of course, the officer found guilty will not serve time. He got an 8 month suspended sentence for causing bodily harm and was found not guilty of breach of duty!
The prosecutor asked the panel of judges to pass a verdict in accordance with the charges, namely that it was a deliberate, violent attack on the face of a female photojournalist, and not accept the defendant’s claim that he was simply trying to push her away after she had tried to pull his gas mask off his face.
Witnesses testifying in the trial included other photojournalists that were present during the incident, who said that the attack on Bolari was completely unprovoked. They stressed that the rally had already finished and only photojournalists were left on the scene, while there were no clashes or incidents taking place and no tear gas, with the road next to the Parliament already opened to traffic.
Read the full article at the Greek Reporter