A Supreme Court hearing for the extradition to France of 57-year-old Georgian national Lasha 'The Fat' Shushanashvili, alleged to be the head of Russian crime syndicate, will resume on Monday, July 23, after another interruption on Friday.
Following an interruption due to his feeling ill on Tuesday, the case resumed on Friday with Shushanashvili again being wheeled into court on a stretcher under tight security conditions. His lawyer Zoi Konstantopoulou said her client asked for 10 days of postponement to give her client an opportunity to recover and respond in the process.
"This man has not been able to rest since May 29, since they transport him to court daily, and we are asking for a postponement on humanitarian grounds, because every time he appears he does so with danger to this health," Konstantopoulou said. "It's not possible to stress every time about whether my client will die in court," she added.
His lawyers added that the postponement will also take into consideration an amendment filed on the Appeals Council decision approving his extradition to France.
The head prosecutor turned down the request for postponement, but by the time the issue was settled, the court's time had run out and judges said they would resume on July 23.
The 57-year-old was arrested in the northern Greek city of Thessaloniki in April during a joint European police operation held simultaneously in France and Greece. He had been imprisoned before that time and was released in 2015 for health reasons but apparently resumed criminal activity, organising thefts and burglaries from which his gang allegedly earned roughly one million euros.
French authorities consider him the leader of a crime syndicate involved in thefts and the 'fencing' of stolen goods.
Thessaloniki Appeals Court Justices agreed to his extradition to France provided he is then transferred back to Greece, where he faces other charges.
Another 13 individuals - 11 of them Georgian nationals - were arrested with Shushanashvili, two of which also face possible extradition.