NEWS

Police find guns, Nazi relics at businessman's home

Nazi uniforms and banners, more than 20 rifles, 10 handguns, numerous knives and a WWII anti-aircraft gun are among the findings police have made after searching the home and other properties of Anastasios Pallis, amid suspicion that the businessman has links to Golden Dawn.

Officers spent a second day on Wednesday searching Pallis’s home in Voula, southern Athens, and two shipping containers that had been unclaimed for some time. At his property, they found 21 automatic rifles that were not accompanied by the appropriate permits. They also discovered eight Glock and two Walther handguns. Various knives and stilettos were also seized. The shipping containers searched at Piraeus port revealed the Canadian-made 1940 anti-aircraft gun and a luxury car.

Perhaps the most surprising discovery, though, was a secret room full of Nazi paraphernalia. This included uniforms, flags, statuettes and silver framed photographs of Adolf Hitler.

The findings have raised questions about whether Pallis had contacts within the police force as his home was first raided on June 7 and none of these items was discovered then. A senior police source told Kathimerini that officers had only been searching the property for documents at the time.

This week’s searches were conducted after a retired British military officer, Edward Pringle-Stacey, wrote via his lawyer to the Supreme Court to provide information that he thought may be useful for authorities in their search for weapons that Golden Dawn could be hiding.

Pringle-Stacey alleged that in 2011, when he was working with Pallis, an ex-associate of shipowner Victor Restis, he saw a collection of about 4,000 firearms at premises owned by Pallis, who is currently wanted by authorities for the illegal possession of 70 guns. According to the British witness, the weapons included AK-47 and M16 assault rifles.

Pringle-Stacey filed charges of abduction and attempted blackmail against Pallis last month, claiming he was held against his will at Athens International Airport by three men that were working for Pallis, who tried to get him to sign a document while he was there.

Restis is currently in custody for alleged embezzlement at First Business Bank, where he was the main shareholder.

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