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Family of Georgios Zantiotis applies for a court decision

Again we are witnessing a cold bureaucratic legitimation of the killings by the police:

General Prosecutor's Office Düsseldorf rejects
the complaint of the family of Georgios Zantiotis

August 31, 2022

The family of Georgios Zantiotis lodged an appeal against the termination of the proceedings on 10 January 2022. Now the General Prosecutor's Office has rejected the complaint and confirmed the decision of the Wuppertal Public Prosecutor's Office of December 2021 and thus the termination of investigations in the case of Georgios Zantiotis.

In the complaint, the lawyer of the Zantiotis family had stated that there was no need to forcibly take blood from Georgios Zantiotis. Due to his height and age, he was at high risk for the so-called death in custody. This was exacerbated by the stress of detention. If Georgios had continued to go home with his sister that evening, he would still be alive today.

The Düsseldorf Public Prosecutor's Office states that police officers have the right to take Georgio's blood if there is no risk of harm to his health. He was the accused and therefore the blood sample was justified and served the purpose of investigation for a later legal procedure.

We note: Georgios Zantiotis is not an accused. He only becomes the accused through the statements of the perpetrators. The same statements then serve the public prosecutor's office to acquit the perpetrators of any guilt. To this day, we do not know why Georgios Zantiotis was arrested. The police officers' stories that he attacked an officer do not correspond to the public statements of Georgios' sister. In the first release of the video of the arrest, she screams loudly, let him go, he is still a child. But no official listens. Instead, Georgios is taken to custody. At the station, the rescue service is first sent away. Half an hour later, georgios is forcibly taken blood three times. Where was the need for a blood draw? What was the danger of Georgios Zantiotis in the cell?

Furthermore, blood can be taken without the consent of the accused if there is no threat to his health. The mere presence of a doctor is not sufficient, especially when several police officers try to throw a young man to the ground. When they tie him up and gag him.

The rejection of complaints by the Düsseldorf Public Prosecutor's Office once again proves that the possible perpetrators are protected in the event of police brutality or imprisonment. The whole reasoning and justification is based on the statements of the police officers. We know from numerous other cases that police officers twist the truth out of corps spirit or right-wing attitude. The most famous is the brutal murder of Oury Jalloh. From NRW we give only two examples from the recent past:

  • To date, the police have not been able to provide a clear statement as to why Amed Ahmad was arrested in 2018. Lies, cover-ups and senseless hours in a parliamentary committee of inquiry showed migrants that you are never safe here.
  • In Essen, the police claimed that they had shot Adel in self-defense. A video of the neighbors shows that they shoot through a locked front door at a man seeking help. Is this what finding the truth looks like?

In August alone, two people were killed by police bullets in NRW. Jouzef Berditchevski was shot dead on August 3, 2022 in Cologne during the forced eviction of his house. 16-year-old Mohammed Lamine Dramé was shot dead with six bullets in Dortmund on August 8, 2022. Interior Minister Reul promises clarification again. We know his clearance rate: 0%.

So far, in all the cases of victims of police brutality known to us during his previous and current term of office, more questions have arisen than clarification. In all cases, in the end, the family of the victims was criminalized and felt insulted. In the case of Georgios Zantiotis, the statements of the Wuppertal public prosecutor's office have tarnished both the memory of Georgios Zantiotis and his family. His statements did not correspond to the truth at any time, but to his imagination. The only excuses that are used again and again to discontinue the proceedings are the statements of the perpetrators and their staff.

The Zantiotis family has now filed an appeal this week against the termination of the proceedings. We will continue to accompany them and stand by their side in solidarity.

Araz Ardehali
Wuppertal, August 31, 2022
CARAVAN for the rights of refugees and migrants


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