NEWS

In Brief

WATER PROBE

Prosecutor orders investigation into alleged spiking of footballers’ drinks The chief Athens appeals court prosecutor, Dimitris Papangelopoulos, yesterday instructed prosecutor Spyros Mouzakitis to conduct a preliminary investigation into charges that players from the first-division Iraklis soccer team were given bottles of spiked water before an away match against Akratitos in April. On Tuesday, the state food authority (EFET) confirmed that traces of a psychiatric drug had been found in samples of the water allegedly given to the players by Akratitos officials. Mouzakitis is to study the case file – which includes EFET’s laboratory results – to determine whether legal action should be taken. METRO PROBLEMS Commuters stuck for 50 minutes after power shut off in fire scare Passengers on the Athens metro’s Line 2 yesterday afternoon were stuck in their carriages for 50 minutes when the electricity supply was shut off between Aghios Ioannis and Dafni stations following a fire scare. Authorities cut the power after the driver of a train which had left Aghios Ioannis station at 3 p.m. smelt smoke. Firemen, who did not detect a blaze, said the smoke had probably been produced by a piece of paper which had been thrown out of a train window and was ignited by a spark off the tracks. FORGED EUROS Siblings arrested with 276 notes Police in Alexandroupolis were yesterday detaining three Greek siblings after discovering 276 forged euro notes in their possession. The officers were alerted after the sister, the youngest of the three, was caught at a supermarket with a forged 50-euro note. A few days earlier, police in the northern city broke a ring they believe had been preparing to distribute 500 fake 50-euro notes. Salamina fire A fire which broke out on Salamina yesterday ravaged a section of pine forest between Perani and Kyriza, in the island’s south. A team of 50 firemen, with 12 engines and backed up by two water-carrying aircraft, were trying to extinguish the blaze, which was being fanned by strong winds. It was not clear last night whether the fire had been put out and how much damage had been caused. Economy briefing National Economy and Finance Minister Giorgos Alogoskoufis yesterday called for Parliament’s economic affairs committee to convene «in order to provide (the committee’s) members with a full and detailed briefing about the state of the economy and, in particular, the state of public finances.» Cocaine gulp A 42-year-old man who visited a hospital in Iraklion with 3.5 grams of cocaine in his stomach was subsequently arrested, police in Crete said yesterday. Officers said they confiscated a plastic bag containing the drugs after doctors removed it from the stomach of the unnamed man. Police believe the man swallowed the drugs shortly after having purchased them because he saw a patrol car and panicked. Norwegian ties Visiting King Harald of Norway and Norwegian Foreign Secretary Jan Petersen yesterday met Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis and Foreign Minister Petros Molyviatis, as well as opposition leaders. Embezzlement A former treasurer for the firm responsible for organizing Thessaloniki’s annual trade fair has been suspended after state accountants revealed that he had allegedly embezzled 508,000 euros of the firm’s money, the Athens News Agency reported yesterday. Missing migrants Port Authority officials on Lesvos were yesterday detaining three illegal immigrants who reached the island’s shores from neighboring Turkey on Tuesday after the rowboat they were traveling in capsized. The detainees told officials that two other would-be migrants disappeared after the boat overturned. Reagan memorial The US Embassy in Athens and the US Consulate in Thessaloniki will be closed all day tomorrow after President George W. Bush declared Friday a national day of mourning in memory former President Ronald Reagan. Previously scheduled non-immigrant visa appointments will be kept.