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14.08.2009, Leipzig

August 14, 2009

Janek Z. the only accused from the attack from the “Sachsen Stube” in December 2007 was today sentenced to 2 years and 4 months imprisonment.

So much for the dispatch from the Leipzig Landgericht.

In the initial trial at Leipzig Amstegricht, Janek had been found guilty off affray and sentenced to 2 years and 6 months. The centrepiece of his appeal was an admission that he had taken part in the attack, coupled to evidence that he had now changed his ways. Based on this, and the argumentation that the brawl had been agreed in advance, his lawyer pleaded for a suspended sentence of 23 months.

But the judge was having none of it.

Only her reasoning made little sense.

That Janek couldn’t have taken part in the attack, as he argued, as revenge for injuries his brother had received in an earlier incident was rejected because Janek had been at the front of the group that entered the bar.
As if the two facts were naturally related.

Indeed with this reasoning  the judge theoretically makes Janek an organiser, as they must have gone in first.

Equally absurd was the assertion that Janek couldn’t have left the room minutes after entering, and after receiving a hefty stool in the face, because “his”, and here Janek still denies that the offending item belongs to him, green balaclava was found near the dart machine, which stands in a corner of the bar.

Because, of course, in the midst of such a melee it is not possible that a bit of cloth could get thrown around. Or moved afterwards, before the police turned up.

We really felt the disbelief with which Janek listened to the summing up. We really did.

Equally inconsistent was the judges belief that it couldn’t have been pre-organised because there were women and children there and Chemie fans phoned the police.

Firstly, a lot was made in the case about the “Code of Honour” amongst football fans concerning acts of violence and cooperation with the police.

The same Codex states quite clearly that uninvolved parties, women and children are left out of any altercations. Given that, one can only explain the LOKies decision to attack the party if one assumes they thought it was only Diablos et al in attendance.

And we don’t believe an “experienced” hand such as Janek would attack such an event when he knew “innocents” were present.

There must have been telephone calls between ULL and Diablos that evening. Must have been. LOK knew that the party was taking place and we don’t believe for a minute that they didn’t announce their intended participation in advance.The question is just who said what to whom and did they mean it…

And so although we don’t follow the “pre-arranged argument”  in terms of a classical everyone knew what was happening pre-arrangement – all those we spoke to after the event were certainly not party to any advance arrangement – that doesn’t mean that someone didn’t arrange something.

The judges assertion that it couldn’t have been pre-arranged because 40 LOKies were there, and you wouldn’t get so many participants in a pre-arranged fight was incredulous as it was ignorant.

And we’ll not even metion her attempt to turn it into armed robbery. We weren’t the only ones in court laughing.

Janek is now in a right fix. Theoretically he has to appeal. But on the one hand that is then extra strain and stress for his family, which he theoretically will want to save them.  Especially given that he has admitted his involvement and the question is just the punishment.  And secondly his only chance of getting the five months knocked-off that would allow a suspended sentence is to name names. And if the judge knew who else was around on that evening she would appreciate that quietly sitting out 10 months in the Leinestrasse is preferable.

If not in the interests of justice.

With Janek a large fish is gone from the Leipzig  Ultra pond. But he was gone regardless of what a sentence he had received. In short he was ripe for the change, ready to move on.

The problem is that there are still an awful lof of large fish in the pond, and a lot of younger fish growing quickly. With Janik the fan project had someone who could have done something positive for the scene, together with those older hands at Chemie who’ve also grown up and moved on.

Through the Leipzig Landgericht that chance is now lost.

In the Book “From Athen nach Althen”  Janek schrieb “Na klar, ich bin erstmal raus, wegen der strafrechtlichen Relevanz. Ich kann mir das jetzt nicht mehr geben. Ich habe echt kein Bock, acht Monate in Knast zu gehen… Deshalb sage ich “Ich bin Raus” Ob ich wieder zurückkomme, kann ich nicht sagen……aber ich gehe dafür nicht in den Knast. Das ist Fakt” *

Daft is that one of the points that also led to the non-suspended sentence was Steffen Kubalds evidence that Janek had said that he “didn’t care” if he was still on probation or not at the time of the attack.

He wasn’t, but only by matter of days.

As we translated Janek’s contribution we remember thinking it was a call for help, an impression furthered by a couple of comments made by few folks who know Janek very well.  Although full of boasts and gore, the whole text was hollow, written like it was supposed to sound, while at the same time inviting the reader to explore further.

Everyone knows that Janek was involved in the attack an dthat he took part willingly. And the police also know who else was involved. They just don’t have the evidence, and as long as the Diablos don’t say anything the police wont have the evidence.

But then if the Chemiker do speak, a few of them will end up behind bars.

And so nothing will happen.

Janek has had a good run, the majority of his actions have passed by without any consequences and so when he reflects on the last 10 years; 10 months is getting off lightly.

That said the attack – regardless of how violent and reckless it was – wasn’t an isolated event and shouldn’t be judged a such.

And so for us, and much as we want to see all the guilty parties brought to justice, Janek has to appeal.

The reasoning from the judge is too random and too non-sensical to accept. Janek is on a good way to a sensible future and so why not 23 months suspended for 5 years?

However, as we say to get that he will have to cooperate an awful lot more…..

* “For the time being I’m out of all that, on account of the probation. I can’t take the chance. I’ve no great desire to got prison for 8 months … And so I’m out. If I’ll return, i’m not sure …  but I’m not going to prison. That’s  a fact”

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