Fugitive robber runs out of luck

Greece’s most wanted robber, Nikos Palaiocostas, was arrested in Viotia, north of Attica, yesterday afternoon after spending some 15 years on the run from authorities, the head of the Greek Police (ELAS), Anastassios Dimoschakis, said in a press conference last night. The police chief said that 10 well-equipped officers had set up a roadside block in the area of Livadi, near Livadia, based on a special plan that police had developed. Dimoschakis did not clarify whether the police were acting on specific information. The officers flagged down a car being driven by Palaiocostas but the wanted criminal increased his speed, forcing officers to give chase. However, Palaiocostas lost control of the vehicle and crashed. He was slightly injured in the accident. Palaiocostas apparently told officers that it was their «lucky day» when they arrested him. Wanted for bank robberies and a high-profile kidnapping, the fugitive has kept police on their toes since his 1990 escape from jail, where he was held for theft and burglaries. Police have been close to arresting Palaiocostas several times, only for the fugitive to slip away at the last moment. Palaiocostas was linked to the escape of his brother Vassilis from Korydallos Prison three months ago. Vassilis Palaiocostas and Albanian prisoner Alket Rizai fled the jail in a helicopter. Rizai was recaptured last week.