NEWS

Greek drug baron released from prison

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Convicted drug baron Alexandros Angelopoulos, the alleged mastermind behind a thwarted plan to ship 5.5 tons of cocaine to Spain aboard the Belize-flagged Africa 1 in 2004, was released from prison a few weeks ago, it has emerged.

Known as the “Greek Escobar,” Angelopoulos, who was serving a 22-year prison sentence, reportedly benefited from legislation passed earlier this year by the previous SYRIZA-led government aiming at decongesting the country’s correctional facilities and was released after 11 years behind bars.

Angelopoulos had initially received a life sentence before a Piraeus court reduced it to 22 years in 2011. He had repeatedly filed requests for release, all of which had been refused.

Besides being convicted for cocaine smuggling, Angelopoulos was also charged in four separate cases for embezzlement and money laundering.

In 2013, he received a 16-year prison term for laundering 36 million euros through sports betting game “Pame Stoichima,” managed by Greece’s gambling monopoly OPAP.

Angelopoulos was allowed to serve his terms concurrently, while in 2014, a court ruled that certain properties and cash initially confiscated as “products of crime” should be returned to him.