Mum of brutally beaten footballer to meet mayor of Malia in bid to stop repeat attacks

Mum of brutally beaten footballer to meet mayor of Malia in bid to stop repeat attacks

Mum of brutally beaten footballer to meet mayor of Malia in bid to stop repeat attacks

First published in News
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Croydon Guardian: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

The mum of a footballer brutally beaten by a pack of thugs in Malia is to hold talks with the mayor of the Greek tourist town in a bid to prevent others suffering a similar ordeal.

Maggie Hughes, whose son Robbie, was in coma for two weeks following the attack in 2008, plans to pressure authorites to make the resort safer at a meeting later this year.

Four British men were convicted in 2012 of viciously attacking former Croydon Athletic and Sutton United player Mr Hughes, now aged 33, outside a nightclub while on holiday in Crete.

Mr Hughes, who lives in South Croydon, suffers permanent memory problems after being battered and left for dead by his attackers.

Mrs Hughes, of Wallington, who has campaigned for changes to international law and been named Tesco Mum of the Year for her tireless fight for justice, said little had changed since her son's beating and holidaymakers continued to fall victim to booze-fuelled violence.

Among suggestions she plans to put to the mayor is a permanent police presence in Malia, which currently has no police station, and a crackdown on unlicenced bouncers, who have been implicated in violence against tourists.

She said: "At the moment you have got no police station in Malia, so if crime is committed you have to go to the next town.

"I'm going to suggest a portakabin or some sort so that people are aware that if everything does kick off there is police there immeadiately to sort it out.

"At the moment there isn't and the youngsters now they can get away with it.

"Also, [we need] awareness for tour operators and the people who sell the alcohol to the bars."

Croydon Guardian: Robbie Hughes during his coma

Robbie Hughes was left in a coma by the attack in June 2008

She added: "There are also unlicenced bouncers on the doors who, as soon as there is a bit of trouble between a bouncer and a client and the client has got seriously injured, that bouncer has got sent to another bar and hidden until the heat has gone down.

"If we can act with them to safeguard our youngsters when we're over there, that doesn't cost anything. We need a little bit of awareness and to work together because at the moment it is them and us and it shouldn't be."

In 2009, Mrs Hughes met with then Malia mayor Konstantinos Lagoudakis, but he was not in office long enough for a planned campaign to come to fruition.

She has arranged the latest meeting with the mayor's office but must first await the results of September's election.

And she hopes to also spur British politicians into action to address what she sees as shocking lack of help for victims of overseas crime.

Mrs Hughes said: "If I can do this, why are the Government not doing this?"

Curtis Taylor, Daniel Bell, Joseph Bruckland and Sean Branton, all from Horley, Surrey, are awaiting a retrial in November after appealing against their convictions for causing grievous bodily harm.

They were handed suspended sentences at a court in Heraklion, Crete, in November 2012.

Comments (1)

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12:44pm Tue 5 Aug 14

Noddyblanket says...

It's just awful. Thank you for all your hard work to make changes. I have seen some pretty brutal things happen on holidays when I was younger myself, and at the hands of bouncers in this country and abroad. I recall the case of the poor lady who's son was murdered abroad after a football match by a group of bouncers. I'm not saying all bouncers are bad but these people are clearly not trained and proffesional... Just aggressive. We go on holiday thinking it's all going to be great but the reality is it can be very dangerous and some people are just plain nasty. I dread my son being old enough to go out alone and I will be worried sick. I really feel for you xx
It's just awful. Thank you for all your hard work to make changes. I have seen some pretty brutal things happen on holidays when I was younger myself, and at the hands of bouncers in this country and abroad. I recall the case of the poor lady who's son was murdered abroad after a football match by a group of bouncers. I'm not saying all bouncers are bad but these people are clearly not trained and proffesional... Just aggressive. We go on holiday thinking it's all going to be great but the reality is it can be very dangerous and some people are just plain nasty. I dread my son being old enough to go out alone and I will be worried sick. I really feel for you xx Noddyblanket
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