Greek flag not allowed on garage door
MONTREAL - A Quebec superior court told Theodore Antonopoulos last week that he had to remove the large Greek flag painted on his garage door.
But the Montreal resident is considering appealing the decision. "I'll speak with my lawyer and see what's involved time-wise, money-wise," Antonopoulos said in a phone interview.
It's been more than four years since Antonopoulos painted the blue-and-white flag on the garage door of his Montreal area home in a fit of patriotic fervour during the 2004 European soccer championships. Greece had just won a surprising victory over host Portugal.
Antonopoulos was fined $138 by the Montreal borough of Pierrefonds-Roxboro when an inspector turned up after a neighbour's complaint and ordered it removed.
He contested the fine at the municipal court but lost in 2007. He then hired Montreal human rights lawyer Julius Grey, who argued that the bylaw involved was illegal because it infringed on Antonopoulos' right to freedom of expression.
But in her ruling, Superior Court judge France Charbonneau wrote that the municipality had the right to set uniform standards within its jurisdiction and upheld the bylaw, which prohibits residents from installing a sign that is painted or reproduced on a building or a fence.
Antonopoulos said he is disappointed in the ruling. And despite the flap, the flag is still there. "I'm not sick of it at all," he said.