NEWS

In Brief

OFFICERS ATTACKED

Group of some 50 youths ambush two policemen Two police motorcycle riders were attacked by up to 50 youths near the center of Athens, it was revealed yesterday. The officers were set upon near Athens’s main court complex on Monday. The policemen’s bikes were damaged and their helmets were removed by the assailants. The officers escaped unhurt from the attack, which police linked to the trial of two men arrested in Palaio Faliron last year while allegedly trying to set a municipal police car on fire. SMUGGLER CAUGHT Greek driver nabbed with 105 migrants in truck A 28-year-old Greek man was arrested yesterday in the Evros border region of northeastern Greece, after frontier guards found 105 illegal immigrants hidden in the truck he was driving. During questioning, the migrants revealed that they had crossed into Greece from Turkey in rowing boats with the help of two smugglers whom they had paid between $3,000 and $5,000 per head. The 28-year-old was supposed to drive the migrants to Athens, authorities said. Thanou included Controversial Greek sprinter Katerina Thanou was yesterday named in Greece’s squad for the Beijing Olympics next month. The Hellenic Olympic Committee included Thanou in the team after she made the qualifying time. Thanou, a silver medalist at the 2000 Games in Sydney, was banned from athletics for two years after missing a doping test with her training partner Costas Kenteris on the eve of the Athens Olympics four years ago. Cannabis farm Police in Crete said yesterday that they have discovered a cannabis plantation with more than 1,400 trees between 1.2 and 5.1 meters high. Officers arrested one man, a foreign national, and uprooted the plants. The plantation had an automatic watering system and was spread over 0.2 hectares, officers said. Train crash The first indications of a preliminary investigation into the causes of a crash between a passenger train and a freight wagon near Lamia, central Greece, early on Monday suggest a series of human errors as well as technical problems, sources revealed yesterday. An official report into the causes of the crash, in which 14 people were injured, is due out in 20 days. Government spokesman Theodoros Roussopoulos yesterday conceded that the Hellenic Railway Organization (OSE) is «one of the most problem-ridden organizations, even more than Olympic Airlines.» Road fatality A 70-year-old motorist was instantly killed when he was hit by another car while trying to execute a U-turn in the middle of a main road in the northern city of Kavala. The 37-year-old driving the other car sustained only minor injuries. Angry young men Police in Petroupolis, northwestern Athens, early yesterday arrested two young men, both aged 24, who are alleged to have set two garbage dumpsters on fire before vandalizing the vehicle of a taxi driver who happened to witness the incident. The two men allegedly damaged the car with kicks and punches.