Probe ordered into death of Albanian in police holding cell Police chiefs yesterday ordered an internal investigation into how a 20-year-old suspect allegedly hung himself in a police holding cell at the Ilion station in western Athens. The Albanian national was arrested on Saturday with a Greek woman on suspicion that they had been robbing youngsters. The 20-year-old used the strap of a waist pouch to hang himself, police said. However, the man’s mother said that her son did not own a waist pouch. Police are investigating whether a previous detainee could have left it in the cell. ALEX DENIAL Mother of Romanian boy suspect says he had no part in alleged murder The mother of a 12-year-old Romanian boy accused of killing 11-year-old Alex Meshivili in Veria, northern Greece, last year denied yesterday that her son had any part in the schoolboy’s disappearance. The unnamed woman told a magistrate in Thessaloniki that her son had not been telling the truth when he admitted to being part of a group of five boys that allegedly killed Alex and then hid his body. The woman said her son had told policemen «what they wanted to hear.» She also denied a charge of failing to properly supervise her child. The parents of two Greek brothers who were allegedly part of the group of five boys are due to be questioned today. ROAD RAGE Man attacked mayor over pothole A man who attacked the mayor of a village outside Thessaloniki claims he did so because municipal workers would not repair a pothole in the road outside his house. The unnamed man went to the home of Mayor Nikolaos Batos in the village of Oraiokastro on Sunday night and allegedly punched him in the face and body as soon as he opened the door. The mayor was taken to a local hospital with bruises but his condition was not serious, doctors said. The unnamed man was charged with causing bodily harm, making threats, swearing and disturbing the peace. Greek-US ties US Ambassador Charles Ries yesterday indicated his approval of Greece’s involvement in the construction of the Burgas-Alexandroupolis oil pipeline, stressing the significance of «alternative» energy conveyance routes to ensure «energy security.» Last month Ries had downplayed suggestions of concern in Washington that the Burgas-Alexandroupolis project would increase Russia’s influence in the global energy market. Amaliada quake The town of Amaliada in central Greece was rocked yesterday morning by an earthquake measuring 4.3 on the Richter scale. The quake was recorded at 7.40 a.m. and its epicenter was in the Ionian Sea. No injuries or damage were reported. Meanwhile, three schools in the area around Lake Trichonida, central Greece, remained closed yesterday as repair work continued on buildings damaged in quakes last week, the largest of which measured 5.9 Richter. Teaching at the schools will resume in temporary classrooms toward the end of the week. Lane closures Traffic will be reduced to one lane on a section of Alimou and Katehaki avenues between 7.30 a.m. and 7.30 p.m. until the end of the month because of repair work on electricity poles, authorities said yesterday. The work will take place between Pindos Street and Kareas Avenue.. Illegal antiquities The 48-year-old owner of a jewelry store in central Athens and her 50-year-old supplier have been arrested after police seized hundreds of illegally acquired antique coins and jewels and discovered a workshop that has allegedly been used to produce forgeries of these antiquities. In police raids on the jewelry store, the workshop and the two suspects’ homes, officers seized more than 500 ancient coins, several bracelets, rings and medallions and 90 pre-Columbian terracotta statues. Police also seized hundreds of forged ancient coins, several statues and moulds from the workshop. Samos immigrants Police yesterday detained 38 illegal immigrants, mostly from Afghanistan and Iraq, on the eastern Aegean island of Samos. Authorities said the immigrants entered the country earlier in the day by boat and had split up into two groups. Police also arrested a Turkish national suspected of being responsible for the human trafficking operation.