Ex-fireman accused of Athens arson spree

A former seasonal fireman sacked nine years ago for «psychological problems» was charged yesterday with five central Athens arson attacks carried out over a period of two hours on Monday evening in which several people had to be evacuated from burning buildings. Spyros Koyionos, 37, was detained on Monday evening, after a spree that started at 5.30 p.m. in Metaxourgeio and continued through Psyrri, Kolokotroni Street and Karytsi Square in the city center, before ending again in Psyrri around 7.20 p.m. Nobody was hurt, though several buildings were badly damaged. All the fires started in basements, where Koyionos allegedly poured out petrol and then set it alight. Koyionos served for three years as a seasonal forest fireman and was imprisoned in 1996 for setting fires in buildings in Aegaleo. Following his release, he was jailed again for making prank calls to emergency services.

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