Group claims police hit

The militant left-wing group Sect of Revolutionaries claimed responsibility for last Wednesday’s killing of a witness protection police officer in a proclamation published yesterday in daily newspaper Ta Nea. «We will strike again at all mechanisms of domination, at institutions and their representatives,» the group said in an extract from the proclamation submitted to the newspaper in the form of a CD-ROM. The claim confirms conclusions drawn by police ballistics experts linking cartridge cases found at the scene of the shooting in the Athens district of Patissia to a 9-millimeter pistol used in two attacks by Sect of Revolutionaries in February when the group first appeared. In a proclamation issued by the militants after its first attack on the Korydallos police station, the group had expressed fierce contempt for police officers and warned that they would henceforth be a target. Police said that a probe into the fatal shooting of 41-year-old Nektarios Savvas, who had been in an unmarked car guarding the home of a witness in a terrorism trial when he was shot 20 times by two gunmen, had yielded some leads but not necessarily useful ones. Officers have established that an unidentified individual believed to have been an accomplice to the two gunmen had sent a mobile text message to the perpetrators to inform them when Savvas had been due to start his shift. The problem is that the text was sent from a prepaid mobile telephone whose owner would not have been obliged to divulge personal details. In any case, officers regard it as highly unlikely that the same phone will be used again. In a related development, police are said to be questioning the credibility of another claim of responsibility, by known anarchist Nikos Kountardas, regarding the fatal shooting of a special guard outside the British attache’s residence in 2004. Officers are said to be skeptical about Kountardas’s claim to have killed Haralambos Amanatidis with the help of an accomplice who is now dead. Police are looking into cases of recently deceased anarchists to see whether they shed any further light on Kountardas’s claims.