NEWS

In Brief

CELL SUICIDE

Suspect awaiting extradition hangs himself at Acropolis police station A 32-year-old man was found hanged in an apparent suicide yesterday morning at the Acropolis police station in central Athens, where he was being held in custody for allegedly possessing drugs. The unnamed Algerian national had been arrested on August 12 and was awaiting extradition as he did not have a residence permit. Police said that he used his T-shirt to hang himself from the cell bars. Officers said they discovered the man at 7 a.m. Meanwhile, another suspect being held in the same cell said he did not realize his cellmate had hung himself. ASBESTOS DISCOVERY Inspectors find dangerous material at two hospitals in Piraeus area Health inspectors have found potentially dangerous levels of asbestos at two hospitals in the Piraeus area, the local prefecture said yesterday. Traces of the cancer-causing substance were found in building materials that were used at the Tzaneio Hospital and the Geniko Hospital in Nikaia, southwest Athens. Officials said that asbestos was discovered in temporary structures that would have to be torn down immediately and the material disposed of safely. CABBIE ROBBED Armed men steal taxi driver’s cash Two armed men held up a taxi driver in Kolonos, central Athens, yesterday and made away with 100 euros in cash, police said. The men are said to have threatened the 46-year-old driver with a knife before escaping on foot. Hidden stash A Dutch national of Lebanese origin was stopped at the border between Greece and Turkey with 55 kilos of hashish in his possession, police said yesterday. The man, aged 35 and living in The Hague, was detained at Komotini in the northeast of the country. He was returning home from Lebanon via Turkey in a Dutch registered vehicle. The drugs were found by a sniffer dog in a cache in the petrol tank. The man, who has not been named, was detained and his car seized. (AFP) Funky chickens Piraeus prefectural inspectors seized and destroyed 723 kilos of chicken products yesterday after checks at the Tzaneio Hospital. Officials called the inspectors upon receiving the meat as they detected a peculiar smell. The inspectors seized 138 kilos of chicken at the hospital and then conducted a check on the refrigerated truck that had delivered the meat. They confiscated another 552 kilos of fresh chicken and 33 kilos of frozen chicken which had started to go bad because the truck was not properly refrigerated. Inspectors said the temperature inside the truck’s storage compartment was 20 Celsius (68 Fahrenheit). Public protests The Athens Chamber for the Self-Employed (EEA) yesterday welcomed a government proposal to restrict smaller demonstrations from blocking off roads and slowing down the capital. Public Order Minister Vyron Polydoras called for a public discussion last week on preventing sparsely attended protest marches from creating chaos across the city and limiting the space they are allowed to protest in. «With the dialogue, chronic problems will be solved that everyone has known about for years but no one has done anything about,» said EEA president Ilias Hadzivasiloglou. Battery recall The Development Ministry said yesterday that Dell Hellas is recalling 1,800 batteries sold between April 1, 2004 and July 18, 2006 in Greece due to the risk of fire. The recall is part of Dell’s decision to replace 4.1 million notebook batteries across the world over safety concerns. Bank robbery An armed man held up a branch of Citibank in Hellenikon, southeastern Athens, and made away with an unknown amount of cash. No further details were immediately available. BMW shocks The General Secretariat for Consumer Affairs said yesterday that BMW cars manufactured in Germany between January 9 and April 26 this year are being recalled for repairs because of a potentially dangerous fault with the rear shock absorbers. The recall applies to 5, 6 and 7 series models.