Greek police arrested one of the country’s most wanted men – a fugitive convicted of terrorism – during a shootout Wednesday in Athens’ central tourist district that left four people wounded, authorities said.
Early reports said police approached Maziotis as he came out of a store selling outdoor and camping equipment in the crowded Monastiraki district, steps away from the city’s central Syntagma Square, and asked him to surrender. Maziotis reportedly opened fire at the police who returned the fire as the fugitive tried to flee the scene in a taxi. Police reportedly then stopped the vehicle and arrested Maziotis.
Maziotis has been taken under tight security to Evangelismos hospital, where he is expected to undergo surgery.
A police officer, who was reportedly hit at the thigh, is been treated at the 401 military hospital in Athens.
Two foreign tourists, an Australian and a German, also suffered minor injuries during the incident.
Maziotis has been on the run along with his wife Panagiota Roupa since 2012 following their release from jail after serving the maximum 18 months in pre-trial detention.
Maziotis and Roupa were convicted in absentia last year and sentenced to 25 years for participation in Revolutionary Struggle, a group active between 2003 and 2009 and best known for firing a rocket-propelled grenade into the US Embassy and bombing the Athens Stock Exchange. Neither of those attacks caused injuries.
In January, authorities announced a 1 million-euro ($1.3 million) reward each for information leading to their arrest. [Kathimerini, AP]