No recognition for officers that cracked ‘heist of century’

No recognition for officers that cracked ‘heist of century’

The leadership of the Hellenic Police (ELAS) has reportedly refused to appropriately honor the officers that in summer 2021 found intact two world-famous paintings that had been stolen nine years earlier from the National Gallery in Athens.

The solving of the “heist of the century,” as the theft of works by Picasso, Mondrian and Caccia was dubbed, made front-page news worldwide. The Caccia has not been recovered.

While all the necessary procedures were launched so the officers that handled the case – Vasiliki Sergianni, Christos Xypolia and their immediate superior Grigoris Zacharakis – could be awarded the Police Cross (the second most important police medal after the Medal of Valor), the recently retired chief Konstantinos Skoumas refused for reasons yet unknown.

In January this year Giorgos Sarmantzopoulos, 50, was found guilty of aggravated theft and handed a suspended prison sentence of six years.

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