NEWS

In Brief

SOCCER VIOLENCE

Five fans indicted after clashes, minister asks clubs to take action Five Panathinaikos soccer fans, including one minor, were yesterday indicted on charges including unprovoked grievous bodily harm, criminal damage and verbal abuse after allegedly participating in violent incidents before Sunday’s Athens match between Panathinaikos and Olympiakos. Deputy Sports Minister Giorgos Orfanos yesterday called on soccer clubs to take responsibility. «I do not understand why the Greek State should be obliged to police events organized by professional clubs. They should assume their responsibilities,» Orfanos said adding, «If they cannot restrain their supporters, then the event should not take place.» SAILORS RETURN Five Greek crew of Tasman Spirit back after nine months in Karachi Five Greek seamen of the Tasman Spirit tanker, who had been under house arrest in Karachi for the past nine months, arrived at Athens Airport last night aboard the prime-ministerial jet, accompanied by Merchant Marine Minister Manolis Kefaloyiannis and Deputy Foreign Minister Yiannis Valinakis. «The efforts of the Foreign Ministry… contributed decisively toward the termination of this injustice of a humanitarian nature,» the ministry said in a statement in which it thanked the Pakistani authorities for their cooperation. The Tasman Spirit tanker caused a massive oil spill when it sank off Karachi last August. CABBIE ARRESTED Charged with doctoring meter A taxi driver who allegedly tampered the readings on his cab meter so that he could bump up his passengers’ fares was yesterday arrested at Athens International Airport. The unnamed driver used an electronic device to increase the fare reading on his meter by remote control, according to police, who said the device had enabled the cabbie to increase normal fares by 4 euros per kilometer. The standard rate is 0.26 euros per kilometer. School buses Traffic police conducting inspections on school buses yesterday took two vehicles off the road because their tires were dangerously worn and registered another four violations of buses with worn tires and broken headlights. Last year, traffic police said they registered 683 such violations after conducting 8,357 inspections. Migrants intercepted Coast guard officers on Leros detained a group of 29 illegal immigrants yesterday morning after spotting them in a wooden rowboat off the nearby islet of Farmakonissi, the Merchant Marine Ministry said. Also yesterday, officials on Chios detained a group of seven illegal immigrants who had reached the island in a plastic rowboat. Olympic facelift Owners of Athens properties on key junctions on the Olympic route and near Olympic venues, who are entitled to state subsidies for the renovation of their buildings ahead of the August Games, must submit their applications by April 30, the Public Works Ministry said yesterday. ELA trial Three court journalists yesterday sued against the key prosecution witness in the trial of Revolutionary Popular Struggle (ELA) suspects, Sophia Kyriakidou, after she publicly alleged that the three were taking bribes from a defense attorney. Kyriakidou, the estranged former wife of defendant Angeletos Kanas, is to take the stand again today. Roadworks Roadworks at the junction of Mesogeion and Marathonos avenues from today will cause traffic disruptions over the next few days between midnight and 5.30 a.m. Today, all Rafina-bound traffic will be blocked on Mesogeion Avenue between Dimitras and Adrianou streets; tomorrow, there will be no Rafina-bound traffic on Marathonos Avenue between Cycladon Street and Spaton Avenue; and on Thursday, there will be no Athens-bound traffic on Marathonos Avenue between Spaton Avenue and Cycladon Street. Athens Fun Run Athens Mayor Dora Bakoyannis yesterday called upon Athenians to participate in the annual Athens Fun Run on May 16. A 3-kilometer and 8-kilometer race will start at the Panathenaic Stadium at 10 a.m., Bakoyannis said, noting that a special route would be marked out for disabled competitors.