The crime in Greece: The prejudice against the foreigners

By Minos-Athanasios Karyotakis

On Wednesday on June 7th a 30-year-old foreign perpetrator attacked and killed with his knife the 52-year-old owner of a grill tavern in Corfu, Greece.

“Crime on Corfu: The Albanian asked the 52-year-old baker “You’re the one?” and killed him with five knife stabs…With five knife stabs, the three of which proved fatal, the 30-year-old Albanian murdered the 52-year-old grill owner in Corfu”, wrote on his website one of the most popular news organization in Greece wanting to highlight the origins of the perpetrator, as in Greece the Albanian nationality is often related to criminality.

The Greek Mass Media Organizations are keen on publishing crime news stories, especially during the summer holidays, when there are not a lot of other hard news that can attract the reader’s attention. According to some professionals of the field, sometimes they somewhat invent news stories by focusing on the nationality of the perpetrator in order to be accepted by the editorial team and get published on the medium. In the contemporary media history of the country there are a lot of criminal cases that got a lot of publicity not because of the type of crime, but because of the perpetrator’s nationality. Moreover, there existed many cases of even more violent and dreadful crimes that were committed by Greeks, but could not make it in the front pages of the countries national newspapers for a long time.

As reported by Hellenic Police the most prominent criminal cases are those that are linked with ‘Thefts-burglaries ‘, ‘Thefts of wheeled vehicles’ and ‘Drugs’, in which the native perpetrators are about three times higher than the alien ones.

Click on the link below to see the first interactive graphic “The crime in Greece”:


In addition, Greece’s financial difficulties and its bailout programmes were supposed to raise up criminality, as the country faces a high rate of unemployment, wage adjustments and cut in the salaries of the public and private sector that exceed, in some cases, even the 40% of the overall income. Despite these facts there were only a serious increase in the cases of mendacity, in which the foreigners are more than the natives.

Click on the link to see the second interactive graphic “Native perpetrators”:


Click on the link below to see the third interactive graphic “Foreign perpetrators”:


Furthermore, the entrance of the neo-Nazi political party, Golden Dawn, in the Greek Parliament in the elections of 2012 brought to the fore more footage and news stories that were against the people of different origins. Golden Dawn has attacked verbally and physically many immigrants by using the excuse of their criminal behaviour until today.

“Golden Dawn cried a few days ago in parliament that … Albanian criminals have introduced thousands of Kalashnikov to the country and are a public danger. The failed Ministry of Citizen Of Protection replied that it ignores the details of this issue. Yesterday, two compatriots were in danger of losing their lives from these rubbish that we have unaccountably left to kill in our country. The solution can be only one: Tough repression of all criminals who have turned Greece into jungle”, states of the press releases of the party that were shared with the public in order to highlight, according to their opinion, the importance of fighting the dangerous foreigners that threat the country.

The eruption of the refugee crisis gave the opportunity to focus more on the issues of prejudice, racism and the fight against diversity in Greek society. Initiatives and project from researchers, universities and trade unions are trying to attract people’s attention aiming to underline cases of violation of human rights and create new narratives that promote unity, understanding and respect. However, for a great part of Greeks, several citizens with origins from the Balkans or the African countries are going to be associated with a prejudice criminal behaviour for a long time to come, as bad habits are easier to abandon today than tomorrow.

Click on the link below to see the fourth interactive graphic “Native vs Foreign perpetrators”:

This article was my optional project for the course Data Journalism Fundamentals (2017).

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