Top court prosecutor asks judges to reject Turkish extradition request for first two officers

Supreme Court prosecutor Vasiliki Theodorou recommended the rejection of Turkey’s extradition request for two Turkish army officers accused of participating in the country’s foiled coup attempt last July, arguing the case is legally inadmissible, as the evidence provided by the neighbouring country’s authorities were “vague”.

Theodorou’s oral arguments were heard in the first hearing out of three which will determine the fate of the eight officers in Greece’s top court. The officers fled to Greece with a military helicopter after the attempted coup and have been detained ever since pending their trial.

She also said that if they were extradited, they would not have a fair trial and could possibly be tortured. “There is a serious risk of torture, inhuman and degrading treatment, as well as a risk to be tried by judges who do not guarantee an independent and unbiased judgment,” the prosecutor said.

Theodorou also said the transcripts of the hearings in the lower courts, the documents presented and the arguments made in the courtroom show that the conditions for an extradition, as laid down in articles of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), are not in place and there are no specific evidence. According to the prosecutor, the description of the alleged crimes in the indictment is “completely vague”.

In her closing remarks, she also spoke of the hundreds of journalists, judges, prosecutors, civil servants, lawmakers and ordinary citizens who have been detained, arrested or fired during the purge carried out by Turkish authorities.

The court judges said they will announce their ruling on January 23.