NEWS

Notorious Greek criminal convicted to multiple life sentences over 2001 murders

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Eighteen years after his crimes were committed, Greece's most notorious criminal, Costas Passaris, was sentenced in absentia to four life terms and a further 71 years in prison for four murders and a slew of other felonies by an appeals court in Athens.

Judges and the jury found him unanimously guilty of four murders, six attempted murders, three robberies and an abduction.

Passaris is currently being held in a Romanian prison where he is serving a life sentence for a double murder in 2001. He is expected to be released in about a year.

In Greece, he is wanted for the murder of two police guards during his February 2001 escape from an Athens hospital where he had been taken from prison for tests, as well as the murder of a Bulgarian sex worker and a female doctor killed during a pharmacy heist. Passaris was finally arrested in Romania where he fled to avoid arrest.

Describing how Passaris planned his escape from prison in 2001, the prosecutor rejected claims by the convict’s lawyer that he regrets his actions and asked the court not to take into account any mitigating factors.

“It is proven that the accused operated coldly, soberly with particular cruelty to his victims, with a clear lack of moral inhibitions and contempt of human life,” he said.

The court also acquitted Passaris of a separate armed robbery at a PPC branch in 2001, when one employee was killed and a security guard was seriously injured.