I have decided to ask to represent myself during the hearing on 8 April 2016 on Simos Samaras’s lawsuit. I would like to represent myself with a translator because there is no sign that the lawyer’s strike is about to end. I already represented myself already in the first hearing in this case, so there is no reason why I should not represent myself during the main hearing.
This is the request in English for translation into Greek.
Dear Judge Alexander Oikonomou,
Larisa Civil Court,
I am writing to you to request that I wil be able to allowed to represent myself with a translator at the court hearing on 8 April 2016 for the libel case brought against me by Simos Samaras because of the ongoing lawyer’ strike.
I would like to draw your attention to the fact that I represented myself with a translator at the hearing on 7th March to decide on a temporary injunction in the above case, and I won that hearing.
It, therefore, follows that I can represent myself a second time if I can represented myself already in the civil court as a defendant in this matter.
I understand my obligation to be familiar with the rules and procedures of a civil court hearing, and will seek information and advice in advance to ensure that I am able to comply with rules during and after the hearing on 8th April.
I have been informed I have the right to one witness and I request Theoktisti Emsley, St John the Forerunner, Anatoli, to be my witness during this hearing on 8th April 2016.
Any longer delay of the hearing represents a substantial damage to my reputation.
More evidence has, in the meantime, emerged that Simos Samaras is misusing this libel action to try to intimidate me, a journalist performing a public watchdog function, and to suppress evidence of his and his associates’ wrongdoing.
This libel case is, therefore, an attack on the freedom of the press, and it must be a priority and urgent matter for any court to uphold the fundamental right to free media.
Furthermore, the claims of Simos Samaras and his witness Theodekti Vallianatou are insulting, defamatory to me and malicious in character. I have the right to immediate relief from smears, character assassination and attacks on my character, which damage my reputation. I am a blogger who posts almost every day, also on this case.
I have prepared written evidence translated into Greek, ready to submit to the judge after the hearing for his consideration. I note that written evidence is a major part of this particular libel case because the charges revolve around blogs I have written in English. An oral hearing in Greek, which I do not speak, could lead to errors.
To conclude, I ask you to grant my request to represent myself at the hearing on 8th April 2016 because of the urgency of clearing my reputation of unacceptable smears and because of the importance of upholding the principle of freedom of the press.
I would like to draw your attention to the fact that it could be weeks, if not months, for the lawyers’ strike to end or for the next hearing to be scheduled, representing an unacceptable delay to me, a unacceptable damage to my reputation, and significant extra costs to me.
I note that the plaintiff Simos Samaras has also, until now, been very clear that he wants a quick resolution to this matter. I am sure Simos Samaras will, therefore, also agree to this petition.
Thank you for your attention,