Die is cast by Patras elite officer

A special forces police officer was arrested yesterday while playing backgammon in a cafeteria near Patras, on suspicion of having carried out an armed robbery at a nearby bank a little earlier. The 23-year-old suspect, who has not been named, was being held at Patras police headquarters last night in connection with the theft of 5,055 euros from an Alpha Bank in Kato Achaia. The man, who is from Patras originally but was serving with police special forces in Athens, is alleged to have held up the bank wearing a motorcycle crash helmet and using his service revolver before making off with the money in a Fiat car. Bank staff reported the crime to police and they soon swooped down on a nearby cafeteria to arrest the suspect, who was playing backgammon at the time. A 16-year-old girl is reported to have been found sitting in his car. Her role in the robbery is being investigated. Police said the suspect apologized for the heist, claiming that he needed the money to pay off excessive debts.