Jobless man tricked 6 in flat auction scam

An unemployed Athens man who posed as a well-connected bank employee to swindle five unscrupulous flat-hunters was arrested hours before he was due to receive a cash payment from a sixth victim, police said yesterday. Vassilis Andriopoulos, 40, was arrested late on Wednesday in Zografou when he gave false details to police conducting a routine check. It emerged that he had taken a total of 10,370 euros over the past six weeks from five people on whose behalf he had undertaken to buy cheap flats at the regular auctions for the liquidation of debtors’ assets. The money was supposed to have gone toward refundable auction attendance deposits. He claimed to work in a bank. To gain his victims’ trust, Andriopoulos would take them to see specific flats from the outside, claiming that it was impossible to show them the interior as the debtors were still living there.