Last Updated on November 7, 2022
Greek soccer legend Vassilis Tsiartas has been given a 10-month suspended jail sentence after speaking out against child gender reassignment surgeries.
Tsiartas, who was a key part of the Greek national team’s underdog victory at the UEFA European Football Championship in 2004, was prosecuted under an “anti-racism” law. The soccer star became the first person to be sentenced under law, which was amended in 2014. The Transgender Support Association had filed a lawsuit against him, through its president, Marina Galanos.
The “transphobic” posts that landed Tsiartas came in 2017, when Greece was passing a bill that, among other things, redefined gender identity. In one post, the soccer star wrote that he wished wished “the first gender changes will be made to the children of those who voted for this disgrace [bill]. Let’s see how prideful they feel when their kids are marching down the streets. P.S Legalise pedophiles and complete the crimes.”
He was ultimately sentenced to 10 months in prison and has been ordered to pay a fine of 5,000 euros. The conviction against Vassilis Tsiartas decision to implement the anti-racist law 927/1979 for public incitement to violence or hatred due to gender identity, Greek outlet Prothema News reported.
The Transgender Support Association enthusiastically endorsed the sentence, calling it “particularly important for the transgender community,” Breitbart News reported. Tsiartas has vowed to file an appeal.
Nicknamed “El Mago,” Tsiartas is considered one of the best Greek soccer players of all time. In addition to domestic and continental cup wins, he went his entire career without receiving a single red card.