NEWS

In Brief

Bond probe

Magistrate to call 24 linked to funds’ overpriced deal The magistrate investigating the purchase of a 280-million-euro government bond by four pension funds at inflated prices is set to inform 24 people that they will have to appear before him to give evidence. Sources said investigating magistrate Giorgos Lekkas is set to call the 24 suspects to give evidence next month. The former members of the boards of the four pension funds, as well as the representatives of several banks and a stockbrokerage, are thought to be among those that could face charges. Cell suicide Probe into police responsibility The suicide of a 34-year-old detainee who hanged himself in a cell at a police station in Kilkis, northern Greece, prompted a local prosecutor to launch an investigation into whether the police officers who had been on duty at the time should be held responsible for neglect. The 34-year-old, who had been detained following his arrest for possession of a small quantity of drugs, reportedly fashioned a noose out of his bedding which he used to hang himself from the bars of his cell door. Inmates in a cell opposite started shouting, attracting the attention of officers. ATM fraud Police in Thessaloniki yesterday were questioning two Romanian nationals believed to be members of a major ring copying bank card details from cash machines in the northern port city and using the data to create «clone» cards which they then used to withdraw thousands of euros from the the accounts of unsuspecting customers. The men, aged 29 and 32, were caught next to an ATM in Kifissia, eastern Thessaloniki. In a raid on the suspects’ homes, officers confiscated 69 cloned cards and 9,170 euros in cash. It was unclear how much cash the suspects are alleged to have netted. Prefecture strike Prefectural offices around the country are to shut down tomorrow for 24 hours in protest at new legislation abolishing certain fees and charges that would result in prefectures losing some 110 million euros in revenues. Addressing a press conference yesterday, Messinia Prefect Dimitris Drakos, who is also the president of the Union of Prefectural Authorities (ENEA), called for the revocation of the law, noting that losses would be restricted to 40 million euros if action is taken within the next four months. Sea rescue Three Italians were rescued from a yacht yesterday afternoon after issuing a distress signal while off the coast of Anafi amid winds of 5 Beaufort. According to the Merchant Marine Ministry, which dispatched two rescue vessels and a Super Puma helicopter to the scene in the southern Cyclades, the vessel had started taking on water. All three passengers were transferred to safety, the ministry said. Fatal collision A 74-year-old motorist died and his wife was left seriously injured yesterday after their car collided head-on with a coach carrying 44 Bulgarian tourists on a stretch of national highway outside Larissa, central Greece. No harm came to the coach driver or any of the passengers. The circumstances of the collision were unclear.