NEWS

In Brief

Mysterious death – Coast guard officer’s body found in sea; his car had The body of a young coast guard was found floating yesterday morning in the sea off Cape Korakia, near Kranidi in the northeastern Peloponnese. Savvas Pylos, 21, who served at the Porto Heli coast guard station, was dressed in his uniform – with his service revolver in its holster – and appeared unwounded, apart from a cut above the eye. Coast guards had been searching for Pylos since Sunday afternoon, when his car was found by the sea with a couple of bullet holes in the front passenger’s door. Lucky winners Father of three and bachelor are Greece’s latest billionaires A father of three from the north of Greece and a single man from Athens are the winners of the Joker jackpot drawn on November 5, it was announced yesterday. A lawyer acting for the former took receipt of a check for 1,902,234,815 drachmas at the lottery headquarters yesterday. The other winner, who played his ticket at an agency in Pangrati, central Athens, is reportedly 35 years old and single, according to the agency owner but by yesterday had not come forward to claim his check for 1,866,176,573 drachmas. Metro extension Giant drill arrives in Attica The third giant drill used to open the Athens metro lines has arrived in the port of Lavrion, it was announced yesterday. The components of the drill, named Athena (the other two were Jason and Persephone), will require 12 days to make the journey between Lavrion and the Plakentias station in northern Athens, from where it will open a tunnel to Stavros, Aghia Paraskevi, extending the Syntagma-Ethniki Amyna line. Memorial. President Costis Stephanopoulos will visit the eastern Aegean island of Patmos tomorrow to unveil a monument in memory of the passengers and crew of a helicopter ambulance that crashed into the sea off Cape Sounion in bad weather on January 14 while on a mercy flight from Patmos to Athens. Yiannakopoulou. An Athens appeals court yesterday raised the prison sentence of a woman who murdered her priest lover in 1997 from 20 years to life imprisonment. Katia Yiannakopoulou, 46, said she shot Archimandrite Anthimos Eleftheriadis after he broke off their long relationship. The court disregarded a prosecution plea for clemency. Immigrant registration. As of Thursday, illegal immigrants seeking documents on their criminal record in order to register for residence and work permits must apply to their local authorities rather than departments of the Ministry of Justice, the ministry announced yesterday. Priests vote. Greek priests voted yesterday for their union leadership. But under 700 out of the country’s estimated 9,000 priests are believed to have taken part in the vote. The results are due today. Illegal immigrants. Turkish authorities yesterday arrested 157 people from Afghanistan, Iraq and several other countries trying to get to Italy, The Associated Press reported from Istanbul. The migrants had paid Turkish smugglers $2,000 each to take them to Italy. On the Greek island of Chios yesterday, the coast guard arrested three Afghan men who had rowed to the island from the Turkish coast in a toy dinghy. Athens-Thessaloniki. The train journey between Greece’s two largest cities will be reduced by two hours by 2008, according to Transport Minister Christos Verelis, who visited a new railway bridge on the Athens-Larissa section of the highway yesterday. The trip will be reduced from the current 5 hours and 45 minutes to 3 hours and 50 minutes. Verelis also visited a section of the new double-track high-speed railway line between Tithorea and Lianokladi due to be completed by 2006, which is intended to reduce the current 45-minute journey to 20 minutes. Taxi trick. Taxi driver Grigoris Matsoukas was arrested on Sunday afternoon outside Athens airport after police found a mechanism in his taxi for artificially hiking his fares. Matsoukas, 46, had installed a switch inside the driver’s door that he could activate with his elbow to increase the fare so that the cost of traveling one kilometer went up from 330 drachmas to 2,600 drachmas.