Honour killing story

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Kalliopi T.
born 1971
murdered: 28 December 2007
Residence: Lübeck
Origin: Greece
Children: 1 son (age 4 at the time of the crime), 1 daughter (age 7)
Perpetrator: her ex-husband Efstratios (37 years old at the time of the crime)
In 1999, Kalliopi (called Poppi) and Efstratios marry in Greece, move to Stuttgart and have two children. In 2003, Efstratios is sent to prison for two years for drug offenses. Kalliopi divorces him and receives custody of the two children.

Kalliopi moves to Lübeck. But after his release, Efstratios moves in with her and gets a flat on the same street. Presumably he claims to the social services that he wants to see his children.

But they are afraid of him. The father is violent and terrorizes the family. After his release from prison, there are eight police interventions "in the family environment." But charges are dropped "by mutual consent." Efstratios is allowed to see his children once a week.

He also wants custody to be shared. He sues and loses at the Schleswig District Court on December 27, 2007. The next day he kills his ex-wife in the street with an axe.

The trained lawyer had returned from shopping by bicycle. Her ex-husband, also on a bicycle, approached from behind. With an axe, he strikes her eleven times in the neck and on her upper body. She is instantly dead. The perpetrator flees, but is caught by an off-duty policewoman who had happened to see the crime.

The children join Kalliopi's father Christos. The victim's brothers say that Kalliopi had asked for more protection several times in court and with the police, a request that was denied her.

In July 2008, Efstratios was sentenced to life imprisonment (without special culpability). While still in prison, he gets a lawyer to withdraw custody of the children from the mother's family. Instead, the children will be raised by Efstratios' mother in Greece.

What is an honour killing?

An honour killing is a murder in the name of honour. If a brother murders his sister to restore family honour, it is an honour killing. According to activists, the most common reasons for honour killings are as the victim:

Questions about honour killings

  • refuses to cooperate in an arranged marriage.

  • wants to end the relationship.

  • was the victim of rape or sexual assault.

  • was accused of having a sexual relationship outside of marriage.

Human rights activists believe that 100,000 honour killings are carried out every year, most of which are not reported to the authorities and some are even deliberately covered up by the authorities themselves, for example because the perpetrators are good friends with local policemen, officials or politicians. Violence against girls and women remains a serious problem in Pakistan, India, Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Iran, Serbia and Turkey.

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