Police in search of Maziotis accomplice

An arrest warrant was issued on Friday for a 35-year-old man believed to be an accomplice of Nikos Maziotis but who also embodies a link between the terrorist who was arrested in central Athens on Wednesday and fugitive criminal Vassilis Palaiocostas.

The warrant was issued as police found an apartment in Maroussi, northern Athens, that was used by Maziotis, 42, and his partner, Pola Roupa, 44.

The 35-year-old wanted by police has only been identified by his initials, G.P. Police believe that the suspect took part in two bank robberies, one in Akrata in December 2012 and another in Methana in July 2013, which Maziotis was also involved in. Officers found the unnamed man’s fingerprint at one of the banks and at the other he signed a slip that was later matched by an expert to other examples of his handwriting.

The link to Palaiocostas, who has been on the run since breaking out of Korydallos Prison in a helicopter in 2009, stems from suspicions that the 35-year-old took part in a number of armed robberies with the fugitive criminal. He is suspected of being one of the men who fired 50 shots at an armored car in Epanomi, near Thessaloniki, in 2007. The failed robbery is attributed to Palaiocostas and his gang. A blue Renault Scenic used during the raid was found in the possession of Revolutionary Struggle members three years later.

Police had a breakthrough on Friday when they located the fifth-floor apartment used by Maziotis and Roupa. The couple, and their 4-year-old son lived in the property, which they rented for 600 euros per month, for the last 18 months. No weapons or explosives were found at the apartment. Roupa and the child are reported not to have been seen since Maziotis’s arrest.

Officers were led to the property following a tip-off. When Maziotis was arrested he had four keys in his possession, one of which fitted the lock at the Maroussi property.

A series of charges, including attempted murder, arms and explosives offenses, forgery and robbery were leveled at Maziotis on Friday.