NEWS

In Brief

PARALYMPIC PROFITEERING

Investigation into canteens Deputy Development Minister Yiannis Papathanassiou is expected to refer to the public prosecutor today some suspected cases of profiteering at canteens at Paralympic venues. According to the Athens News Agency, checks made at the start of the Paralympics found some refreshment stands were not keeping to retail prices set by the Development Ministry. The report did not say how many canteen operators would be prosecuted. Patriarch post Members of the Alexandria Patriarchate’s hierarchy on Saturday elected Bishop Petros of Axum, Ethiopia, to be the temporary replacement for Patriarch Petros of Alexandria, who was killed in a helicopter crash in Greece on September 11. According to the Church’s regulations, a permanent successor must be elected within the next 43 days. Robbers foiled Two men armed with an automatic gun held up a grill house in Kypseli, central Athens, early Sunday morning but determined employees and customers caught one of them soon after. The thieves made off on a motorcycle with 3,000 euros but were chased by employees and customers who caught a 25-year-old Albanian who still had the money and weapon on him. The other escaped on foot and is still being sought by the police. Canadian gift The Canadian government will be donating all the furniture it bought for use by its Olympic and Paralympic committees during the Games to the Greek Society for the Protection and Rehabilitation of Disabled Children, Senator Joyce Fairburn announced in Athens on Saturday. Voula explosion A homemade bomb damaged a car and the entrance of a house in the Athens suburb of Voula at 4.20 a.m. on Saturday. The device, which contained about 200 grams of dynamite, exploded in the yard of a two-story house. Police are investigating. Meat trick The Finance Ministry’s fraud squad (SDOE) believes state officials may be involved in an alleged fraud in which four companies in Kavala and one in Grevena would import lambs and goats from Romania and Bulgaria, slaughter them and sell the meat as Greek, complete with the State’s blue stamp. The Athens News Agency report did not name the companies. Big bounce A 33-year-old woman has been arrested and five other suspects are being sought after allegedly issuing worthless checks for 210,000 euros. The gang allegedly set up a company in Thessaloniki and convinced suppliers to accept postdated checks in return for selling them goods. The gang then sold the merchandise at a fraction of the cost without honoring the checks they had issued. Communists The Greek Communist Party will hold its 17th conference on February 9-12, 2005, the party’s central committee announced yesterday. The main topic will be the party’s course and obligations.