Swedish knife suspect pointed out in Greek court

The trial of a 21 year old Swede accused of knifing a man while on vacation in Greece has been extended by a day to allow further evidence to be presented to the court.

Calle Jonsson is accused of attacking a Greek man while holidaying on the island of Kos in the summer of 2001. He has consistently proclaimed his innocence and his family say that the victim wanted a payoff of 160,000 kronor and only took the case to court when but when they refused to pay.

In November 2003 a Swedish court ruled that Jonsson would have to return to Greece to face trial for attempted murder.

The verdict was due to have been delivered on Tuesday but the prosecutor requested an adjournment so that clothes the victim was wearing when he was stabbed could be brought to the courtroom in Rhodes from Kos. The clothes have been held there since the attack took place, but there has been no forensic analysis of them.

Jonsson’s Swedish lawyer, Leif Silbersky, expressed his surprise that evidence to be used in the trial wasn’t already in court, and speculated that the prosecutor was relying on a shock tactic.

“He just wants to hold up bloody clothes in the courtroom,” said Silbersky.

Expressen interpreted the move as a sign that the prosecution “does not have an especially good case”. The tabloid noted that the police failed to carry out an investigation of the crime scene and that the only two witnesses were unreliable.

In court on Monday the victim’s own story differed from what he initially told police. But 27 year old Christoforos Serdaris, a waiter from Thessaloniki who was also on holiday at the time, described how, on a night out with friends, he had walked past three people sitting on the edge of the pavement.

One apparently said something and Serdaris turned and asked, “Sorry?”.

“The Swede took a step forward and pushed me. It took fifteen seconds and then I was hit in the face. I was punched and kicked.”

Serdaris was stabbed five times in the thigh and three times in his stomach and chest before he lost consciousness. In the courtroom he pointed out Calle Jonsson as his attacker.

“Other things might be confused but I’m certain it was Calle,” he said..

Leif Silbersky was unperturbed by Serdaris’s certainty.

“I don’t think it’s worth anything since he didn’t recognise him the first time,” he told Expressen.

“It doesn’t mean he’s lying. It was four years ago and for some reason he believes Calle did it.”

Despite the fact that Serdaris’s blood was found on Jonsson’s clothes, the Swede told the court he “had nothing to do with it”.

On Monday Jonsson spoke to Aftonbladet and, after describing life in a Greek prison cell with a man who thought he was Jesus, said that he was still hopeful.

“I expect a not guilty verdict,” he said.

The trial will continue on Wednesday and the judgement could be delivered at the end of the day.

Sources: Dagens Nyheter, Svenska Dagbladet, Expressen, Aftonbladet