A Greek lawmaker sought by police surrendered on Sunday, bringing to six the number of legislators from the extreme-right Golden Dawn party now in custody and accused of being members of a criminal organization with intent to commit crimes.
The government crackdown on the fiercely anti-immigrant party, which has neo-Nazi roots, marks the first time since 1974 that sitting members of a Greek Parliament have been arrested. The arrests underline the government’s efforts to stifle Golden Dawn, which has been increasingly on the defensive since the Sept. 17 fatal stabbing of a Greek man blamed on a Golden Dawn supporter.
Thirteen Golden Dawn members and two police officers also have been taken into custody and arrest warrants issued for 11 other suspects who remain at large, officials said.
As he turned himself in at police headquarters in Athens on Sunday, Christos Pappas, a lawmaker described by prosecutors as the Golden Dawn’s No. 2 official, condemned the crackdown on his party and the painful austerity measures that have been imposed during the bailout of Greece’s battered economy.
Court hearings before a magistrate are scheduled on Tuesday and Wednesday.