The ‘koalas’ sentenced to up to 20 years in prison and the payment of one million euros for “lynching” the young Alex Ionita in Amorebieta


Updated

The Court of Bizkaia has ruled that the 7 young adults who attacked Alex Ionita, leaving him in a coma, were part of a “criminal group” calling itself ‘Koala Brothers’ and that five of them committed the crime of attempted murder. Four of the ‘Koala Brothers’ have been sentenced to 20 years in prison and all of them will have to face compensation of one million euros to Alex Ionita, the young Romanian who was left in a coma on July 25, 2021 and who was is in a vegetative state.

The judges of the Bizkaia Court sentenced 6 of the ‘koalas’ who in July 2021 were of legal age to 20, 14 and 10 years in prison, and 12 months to the seventh, interpreting that he did not intervene in the attack but he evaded his duty to help Alex when he was being attacked. In addition to these seven ‘koalas’, six other minors were involved in the attack against Ionita and were already tried and sentenced to confinement in special centers.

The sentence accredits the thesis of the family’s lawyers and the Prosecutor’s Office about what happened on the night of July 25 in the Jauregizar park in Amorebieta where hundreds of young people were. Despite the defense strategy of the accused, the judges emphasize in their ruling that the defendants had “come to a common agreement” and with “the intention of ending their lives or representing that possibility” they surrounded Alex Ionita, a young Romanian 23-year-old who was in the park.

For no apparent reason, the ‘koalas’ beat him in a “coordinated manner”, hitting him with various objects and kicking him until the young man was lying on the ground “with a large hemorrhage on his head.” Ionita was transferred minutes later to the Cruces hospital with serious brain damage from which he has not been able to recover despite the continuous care of his parents and, especially, his mother Ana Claudia, who lived in Germany when he was attacked.

The judges describe the attack against Alex as “an authentic lynching” and highlight that the most reliable evidence is the video recorded by one of the accused that he later published on social networks. The six convicted of the crime of attempted murder jointly compensate the victim with 1,071,509 euros, as well as the amount of 20,000 euros to her parents. Alex Ionita’s lawyers demanded permanent, reviewable prison terms for all the accused. Ana Claudia Ionita, the mother of the attacked young man, asked the ‘koalas’ “why” they had attacked her son without obtaining a response from the accused.

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