Greek pilot jailed and charged with murder

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The 33-year-old Greek pilot who confessed to murdering his British wife, Caroline Crouch, faces life in prison pending trial on Tuesday. 

Babis Anagnostopoulos was led to the Athens Police headquarters on charges of two felonies, murder and animal abuse, and two misdemeanours, including giving false testimony. 

“I am sorry,” he was quoted as saying in extracts of his testimony cited by the Greek media. 

Anagnostopoulos was escorted by Greece’s anti-terrorist squad passed dozens of onlookers into court while handcuffed and wearing a bulletproof vest. 

“Rot in prison, you monster”, one onlooker yelled as spectators watched the Greek pilot be escorted to his fate (Photo: AP)

Anagnostopoulos, who The Guardian described as “showing no sign of emotion”, argued in court that the crime was neither planned nor premeditated and that he murdered Crouch in a “fit of rage”.

The court heard that Crouch was suffocated for “five to six minutes” and died “an agonising death”. 

Anagnostopoulos’ lawyer, Vasillis Spyrou, resigned moments before the hearing. 

Supreme Court prosecutor Vassilis Pliotas has also ordered an investigation into leaks of Caroline Crouch’s personal diary, saying it’s publication is an “affront to the deceased’s personality and may even contribute to generating a favourable climate for the defendant over the course of the criminal process,” Pliotas said.

A seperate hearing in juvenile court is due to decide 11-month-old Lydia’s custodial arrangements within 90 days. 

Crouch’s parents, Susan and David Crouch, are appealing for custody over Lydia. 

Mr. Anagnostopoulos originally maintained that he and Crouch were the victims of a burglary-gone-wrong in the moments leading up to her murder on May 11, before forensic examinations and incompatible evidence led him to be the prime suspect. 

It was at Crouch’s memorial service in Alonnisos when Greek Police transferred Anagnostopoulos to Athens Police Department to interrogate him for five hours. 

He confessed to the murder and staging a crime scene. 

“No one would have thought that I could harm a dog,” Anagnostopoulos allegedly told police, as Greek media reports. 

Court officials ordered that Anagnostopoulos be detained in Greece’s high-security Korydallos jail pending trial later this year. 

Source: The Guardian

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