Harry Maguire’s legal team lodges appeal against guilty verdict in Greece


Harry Maguire's conviction for assaulting a police offer and attempted bribery has been nullified after it was confirmed his legal team had lodged an appeal against Tuesday's guilty verdict.

The Manchester United and England defender had been convicted at a court on the Greek island of Syros for those offences and handed a 21-month suspended prison sentence.

It is understood no date has yet been fixed for the appeal and, while United would like the matter dealt with as soon as possible, they recognise it could be a number of months before the appeal is heard.

A club spokesman said: "An appeal against yesterday's verdict was lodged this morning by Harry's legal team. In accordance with the Greek judicial process, the filing of an appeal extinguishes the initial court verdict and nullifies the conviction.

"The appeal has been accepted and will lead to a full retrial in a more senior court. This means that Harry has no criminal record and is once again presumed innocent until proven guilty. Accordingly, he is not subject to any international travel restrictions."

United's public support for the player is understood to be an indicator that he will remain as club captain.

His brother Laurence had earlier said there was "no chance" of an apology being issued, after a lawyer representing two Greek police officers said that doing so might lead to a withdrawal of some of the complaints.

Laurence Maguire, who plays for Chesterfield, tweeted: "Absolute no chance Harry will be apologising. Daisy (Maguire's sister) and no one in the group was interviewed by the police."

The latter part of the tweet referenced a comment made by prosecution lawyer Yoannis Paradissis, who said it was "strange" that part of Maguire's defence had been that his sister Daisy had been injected with an unknown substance prior to the incident which led to his arrest in Mykonos last week, when she had made no mention of it when interviewed by police.

Paradissis told BBC Radio Four's Today Programme on Wednesday: "(The police officers) told me they are still waiting for an apology and they haven't had any. This is what I find quite shocking and quite unsporting.

"Fair play means when I've done something wrong I apologise or at least I say I am sorry for what happened to the other person."

England manager Gareth Southgate withdrew Maguire from the squad for the Nations League matches against Iceland and Denmark next month after the verdict was announced, having initially selected him.

Asked about Maguire's claim in a statement on Tuesday that he was the victim, Paradissis said: "We don't have the same definition of what a victim is then, because how can you be a victim and the policemen have been assaulted, hit, that were just doing their jobs?

"They went home on the day with injuries. How can they not be a victim?"

Gareth Southgate, left, performed a U-turn on Maguire's selection
Gareth Southgate, left, performed a U-turn on Maguire's selection

Paradissis said there was no way that Maguire and his co-defendants, brother Joe and friend Christopher Sharman, could not have known that they were dealing with police officers.

"Of course, because that's the first thing they said," he added. "The police officers were there for other duties and they heard a brawl.

"So they heard some people fighting and went there to break up a fight. They said, 'We're police, stop fighting'. They were not in uniform but they showed their professional IDs."

Maguire signed a boot deal with Puma worth a reported £700,000 a year last year.

The sportswear manufacturer declined to comment on Tuesday's verdict when contacted by the PA news agency on Wednesday morning.