Greek legal world shocked by high-profile attorney's assassination

Friday, 13 October 2017 20:57

Political fallout continued on Friday from a shocking assassination of a prominent Athens defense attorney a day earlier.

Attorney Michalis Zafiropoulos, 52, was shot dead in his central Athens office by two unknown assailants. Preliminary reports refer to a small-caliber handgun fitted with a silencer as the murder weapon. No arrests have been made.

Speaking on Friday, main opposition New Democracy (ND) leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis called for stepped up law enforcement efforts to apprehend the perpetrators, while at the same time repeating his party's charges of increased lawlessness in certain central Athens districts.

Zafiropoulos was party cadre and had previously been a candidate for the Athens Bar Association's presidency. His late father was a ND minister and his brother served as a the mayor of the north Athens municipality of Halandri.

Mitsotakis echoed statements by Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras on Thursday, who also demanded answers over a shooting that has all the trappings of a "contract killing".

In a television appearance on Friday morning, the government spokesman said the murder does not appear, from initial indications, to have a political motive.

Zafiropoulos was a very visible defense attorney in several high-profile cases, including ones involving defense contracts.

The two suspects reportedly spoke Greek with a foreign accent and appeared at a previously scheduled appointment posing as would-be clients.

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