Inmate who murdered guard beaten before he died, says coroner
An investigation was launched on Friday into the circumstances surrounding the death of Ilie Kareli, the 42-year-old Albanian inmate who killed a prison guard on Tuesday, after he was found dead in a prison cell and a coroner’s report indicated that he had suffered serious injuries after being beaten with a blunt instrument.
Kareli was found dead late on Thursday after being placed in solitary confinement in Nigrita prison in northern Greece. He had been moved there from Malandrino jail in central Greece after after stabbing to death prison officer Giorgos Tsironis. The 46-year-old victim died instantly after his windpipe was severed in the attack.
Coroners Mina Georgiadi and Eleni Zangelidou examined Kareli’s corpse and concluded that he had suffered several fractures to his sternum as well as extensive bruising to other parts of his body. The medical examiners said he had been beaten up to three days before his death.
Arrest warrants to be issued over beating death of Albanian inmate
The prosecutor in Amfissa, Fokida, who is investigating the circumstances that led to the death of 42-year-old Ilie Kareli while in solitary confinement at Nigrita Prison, in Serres, northern Greece, is expected to issue arrest warrants on Tuesday, according to Skai television.
Sources told Skai that a Greek Police internal affairs investigation into why Kareli died in his cell several hours after being transferred to Nigrita from Malandrino jail in central Greece, where he had stabbed a prison guard to death, has uncovered damning evidence against Nigrita staff.
An autopsy on Kareli’s body revealed evidence of extensive beatings, including on the soles of his feet and to his chest, as well as burns on his hands that are believed to have been sustained in separate incidents.
Further examination is expected to reveal the exact cause of the death within the next few days, though the coroner’s preliminary report suggested that his death was directly related to his injuries.
Skai on Tuesday said that a number of guards at Nigrita have confessed to beating Kareli when he arrived at their facility, before he was placed in solitary confinement, which was observed by a CCTV camera. It is believed that at least 10 guards took part in the assault.
Coroners found that Kareli died last week after a severe beating. They also noted signs he had been beaten on the soles of his feet — a form of torture that causes painful swelling — and electrocuted.
Felony charges brought against prison guards for Kareli murder
Prosecution brings charges against prison guards in Nigrita and Malandrino and police officers in Itea
The three charges brought against the prison guards and police officers are that of torture resulting in death, simple torture and grievous bodily harm. Eighteen prison guards in Nigrita currently face these charges, while the investigation will determine those at Malandrino and Itea who will be prosecuted after the preliminary investigation is complete.
So far, the prosecution has issued warrants for the arrest of eight prison guards based in Nigrita who appear to have been involved in the brutal torture and beating of Kareli. It has been speculated that Kareli received serious beatings and was possibly even torture prior to his death, which have been attributed to prison guards and the police which handled him.
A source from the Ministry of Justice revealed that the intention is to carry out the investigation without trying to cover anything up. The medical examiner reported hat Kareli suffered a fractured sternum near the time of his death. Additionally, a camera from the corridors in the Nigrita prison recorded Kareli being taken to a cell without a camera and then, about two and a half hours later, he is being dragged away by two guards.
It would appear that the Albanian convict was brutally tortured while in prison, which has caused huge tension amongst prisoners. Perhaps more shocking is that in his short stay in Nigrita, Kareli appears to have been tortured by the president of the prison guard union Haris Konsolidis! On Friday Konsolidis appeared on multiple television stations feigning ignorance and claiming that Kareli must have been brutalized prior to his arrival in Nigrita.
Konsolidis is currently hospitalized at the psychiatric ward in Serres, claiming to be under pressure following his questioning by the police.
Investigation suggests Kareli was tortured entirely in Nigrita
Fourteen prison guards are thought to have tortured the 42yo Albanian convict for two and a half hours
CCTV footage from the Nigrita prison shows Kareli walking unaided and entering the prison cell, where he was kept for about 2.5 hours. In the footage showing him exit Kareli appears half-naked, in a dire condition and held by others. It transpires that after torturing him, the prison guards attempted to clean up the cell and signs of torture.
According to the case file, which is being handled by the judicial authorities of Serres, Kareli was tortured for about two hours by 14 prison guards. One of the prison guards appears to have stepped on the prisoner’s sternum, after it had been broken. Amongst those being prosecuted is the employee union president, Haris Konsolidis, who had served with slain prison guard Tsironis in Korydallos and is said to have been emotional during Kareli’s arrival. On Friday, Konsolidis feigned ignorance over the beating.
The implicated prison guards told police officers that Kareli only received a few “slaps and angry punches” while preparations were being made for the prison cell for his “safety”, such as installing cameras. The indicted prison guards also attempted to justify the delay in the “sudden, last moment” transfer of Kareli, but later began to brag about assaulting and torturing Kareli.
He was tortured to death for two and half hours.
Captive by his tortures for two and a half hours, in a cell without CCTV to record state brutality, Ilia Kareli was subject to the murderous violence of 10 guarding officers in the prison of Nigrita who passed by to…
For the moment, however, it remains unclear whether Kareli was tortured before the 25th of March, when he attacked and killed Yiorgos Tsironis, Correctional officer in the Malandrino Prison. What is certain is that his injuries were caused during temporally distinct events, which means that he was not only abused in Nigrita. Tissue samples are being examined in order to establish whether the burn on his right hand palm originates in an electric discharge.
Horrific torture is denounced by Albanian newspaper “Gazeta Shqiptare” which cites information backed by the examination of Kareli’s body by an Albanian forensic expert as Greek authorities fail to publicize the results of the autopsy. According to the report, Kareli suffered severe head injuries, broken ribs, missing nails, broken feet soles, and multiple arm injuries and burns. As the newspaper reports ‘his torturers tried to cut off his genitals’! However, the prosecuting authorities in charge did not confirm such a thing. The prosecutor of Fieri, Arntian Ili, mentioned that the official forensic examination results will be announced in two weeks time and he admitted that the body ‘has multiple fractures and death occurred as a result of violence’.