NEWS

In Brief

TAPPING INQUIRY

MPs to take another shot at getting answers about eavesdropping The parliamentary committee investigating the recent phone-tapping affair has asked Yiannis Angelou, the director of the prime minister’s political office, to answer questions next Thursday morning. Bill Zikou, the head of Ericsson Hellas, and Giorgos Koronias, the CEO of Vodafone in Greece, are also due to face the committee later the same day. Angelou was the first government official to be informed of the tapping last March by Koronias. FUEL STRIKE Gas station owners call off action and prepare for talks with ministry Gas station owners called off a two-day strike that had been scheduled to begin yesterday after the Development Ministry agreed to hold talks with them on ways to stamp out the illegal fuel trade. The fuel sellers are to kick off talks with Development Ministry officials today. CHRISTIDIS SENTENCED TV chief given eight years in jail Television station owner Vassilis Christidis was handed an eight-year jail sentence yesterday by a Thessaloniki court on charges of fraud. Christidis was found guilty of colluding to defraud more than 117,000 viewers who had called the station’s premium rate 090 quiz line to win prizes. Christidis’s wife and sister were both given suspended sentences of four years each, while 10 other associates were found innocent, court sources said. Trial-fixing The plenary session of the Supreme Court yesterday decided to fire deputy appeals prosecutor Nikos Athanassopoulos and former judge Antonia Ilia due to their alleged involvement in trial-fixing. Ilia is wanted by authorities in connection with charges of corruption. Thessaloniki clash Police clashed with protesters during an anti-fascist demonstration in Thessaloniki yesterday. Riot squad officers fired tear gas at demonstrators who were trying to attack the offices of extreme right-wing group Chryssi Avgi. The march had been organized to protest the stabbing of three students, who suffered minor injuries, last week by alleged members of Chryssi Avgi. Nobody was injured or arrested in yesterday’s incident. Store standoff Staff at a supermarket in Nikaia yesterday staged a 10-hour standoff with prefectural officials who had arrived to shut down the enterprise, which had been found guilty of a string of health and safety violations. The 45 Skodo employees refused to admit the officials until late in the afternoon following talks between local authorities and store representatives. Slipped away Police in southwest Crete said yesterday that thieves had broken into the warehouse of a farming cooperative in the area of Selino and made off with some eight tons of olive oil worth 25,000 euros. In the latest of a string of similar incidents, the thieves used a crowbar to break the lock on the warehouse gate and loaded the oil onto a truck. Based on the trail of oil that the thieves left behind, officers believe the suspects headed toward the village of Temenia. Meat confiscated The Hellenic Food Authority (EFET) confiscated 1.6 tons of meat from Kritika Kreata in Crete yesterday. EFET said that the meat, imported from France, was unfit for consumption due to the poor refrigeration conditions in which it was being kept. Strange death The owner of a car dealership in Patissia, central Athens, was found dead yesterday, police said. Constantinos Saltos, 41, was found by his wife lying in a pool of blood in the dealership’s storage space. She told officers that for personal reasons Saltos had been living at the store for the past two days. It was not immediately clear how he died. Heroin stash Authorities arrested yesterday four men and one woman in Thessaloniki after they found 152.4 grams of heroin in their possession. Police searched the home of one of the suspects and found the well-hidden narcotics with the help of sniffer dogs.