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Prosecutor proposes 27 officials be tried for manslaughter by negligence over 2018 Mati fire

Prosecutor proposes 27 officials be tried for manslaughter by negligence over 2018 Mati fire

A first-instance court prosecutor proposed on Tuesday that 27 officials be tried over "confusion, lack of preparedness, surprise and delays in responding" during the deadly fire at Mati, East Attica in 2018. The July 23, 2018 fire killed 102 people and injured over 30.

Prosecutor Giorgos Polykratis told the Council of Misdemeanor Judges that the then officials - who included Attica Region head Rena Dourou, the present chief of the Fire Brigade, mayors and police chiefs - should be tried on charges of serial manslaughter through negligence and bodily harm through serial negligence and omissions. The 27 include the 70-year-old man who started the fire through negligence, he said.

The prosecutor justified trying the officials for misdemeanors rather than criminal acts in a report 680 pages long. "A combination of converging negligent behaviors led to the tragic result," Polykratis said.

Listing acts of negligence, he highlighted the following: no prevetative surveillance by air; insufficient action by officials; wrong management of air means, and wrong operational prioritizing of multiple pockets of fire.

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