In Brief


Judges agree on appointing special prosecutor, Giorgos Lekkas, to case The Council of Appeals Court Judges appointed yesterday a special prosecutor yesterday to investigate a 280-million-euro bond-trading scandal. They ruled that felonies, including fraud and money laundering, had been committed. Court officials unanimously agreed to appoint prosecutor Giorgos Lekkas to investigate criminal offenses relating to fraud, tax evasion, money laundering, embezzlement, membership in a criminal organization and harboring a criminal. ALEX PROBE Officers charged with dereliction of duty in investigation of missing boy Five police officers from Imathia, northern Greece, were yesterday charged with dereliction of duty in connection with their initial investigation into the disappearance of 11-year-old Alex Meshivilli from the local city of Veria. Thessaloniki prosecutor Theodoros Strogylis issued the charges. The prosecutor believes that the officers did not conduct proper searches of the area and took too long to question the five schoolboys who have since been charged with Alex’s murder. The policemen were not named. MIGRANT POWER Data illustrate immigrant contribution Migrants are responsible for producing 2.7 percent of Greece’s GDP, according to figures made public at a conference in Athens yesterday. The statistics were part of a study that suggested migrants had helped to create more jobs and improve the competitiveness of Greek products. More studies on migrants living in Greece are needed so the government can develop its immigration policy, the head of the Hellenic Migration Policy Institute (IMEPO), Alexandros Zavos, said at the conference. Entrance exams A record number of senior high school students have gained a place in tertiary education, according to initial assessments of exam results that were released yesterday. The results were posted at schools around the country but authorities will not know until next week the exact number of students who have achieved at least a 50 percent average to qualify for a university place. Priest killers Three men who had been accused of murdering a priest in Crete were sentenced yesterday to life imprisonment and 18 years in jail for the murder. The priest, Pantelis Vozinakis, was murdered 14 months ago in Hania. A 32-year-old woman, a girlfriend of one of the convicted murderers, was handed a nine-year jail sentence for taking part in the crime and harboring a criminal. Transplant drive Health Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos yesterday appealed to citizens to become organ and blood donors, noting that he would be one of the first to join a national volunteer register for blood-cell donors. The creation of the register is outlined in a draft bill, due to be submitted in Parliament soon, which also foresees the extension of an existing implementation framework to support stem-cell transplants using umbilical cord blood. Opium haul Police in Thessaloniki yesterday arrested a Greek and a Bulgarian after seizing more than 24 kilos of opium, the largest single haul of the drug Greek police have ever made. The suspected smugglers had intended to sell the drugs for 10,000 euros per kilo, according to police, who said the opium had been imported from Turkey and Bulgaria. Officers believe that the Greek, 66, and the Bulgarian, 44, are members of an international drug-smuggling ring. The police were tipped off by the US Drug Enforcement Agency. Illegal entry Police detained 37 illegal immigrants from Albania in an area close to Ioannina, northern Greece, who had sneaked into the country at unguarded points on the Greek-Albanian border, authorities said yesterday. Police arrested a driver, an Albanian national, who had just picked up the illegal immigrants and was transporting them to Athens for a fee of 1,000 euros each. Separately, two Greek nationals were arrested in Arta, western Greece, for allegedly transporting seven illegal immigrants in their car.

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