Greek justice pursues jobless father-of-3 beyond the grave

AP News
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Posted: Apr 29, 2015 3:39 PM

THESSALONIKI, Greece (AP) — A Greek court has convicted a dead man of stealing electricity from a power utility, giving him a six-month suspended jail sentence.

Defense lawyer Christos Bakelas told the Thessaloniki court that his client was deceased, and asked to have the trial deferred until he could deliver a death certificate. But the court refused, and on Tuesday convicted his client in absentia.

Thessaloniki police records show the 46-year-old unemployed father of three died on April 8, but Bakelas wasn't informed until the eve of the trial.

The man was charged last year after activists reconnected his power supply that had been cut by the electricity company for unpaid bills.

Bakelas said he was astonished by the court's decision and hadn't experienced anything like it in his 25 years as a lawyer.