NEWS

Terror suspect claims an alibi

A 26-year-old man suspected of being a member of the Conspiracy of the Cells of Fire urban guerrilla group is due to face a magistrate today but his lawyer revealed yesterday that the suspect can prove he did not take part in any of the group’s bombings. The unnamed man was arrested on Tuesday night when he presented himself at a police station as part of his bail terms following a previous arrest for public order offenses. Police said that the suspect was taken into custody because his fingerprints were found at a house in the northeastern Athens suburb of Halandri which is believed to have been one of the terrorists’ bomb-making facilities. However, the 26-year-old denies any involvement in the group and said that he had only visited the property once in 2007 to install a computer when he was a fellow student of another suspected member of the Conspiracy of the Cells of Fire, Harilaos Hatzimichelakis, who owned the apartment. The suspect’s lawyer, Antonia Legaki, said her client can prove that he was not in Athens when bombs exploded outside the homes of former Deputy Interior Minister Panayiotis Hinofotis and Economy Minister Louka Katseli. According to Legaki, her client had been helping his father set up sound systems for political and cultural events in central Greece on both occasions. Legaki also claimed that a senior police officer told the 26-year-old’s mother that her son is not a suspect but that authorities are simply following procedures in order to eliminate him from their inquiries. Meanwhile, efforts to secretly observe another terrorist suspect were dealt a severe blow when it emerged that a 40-year-old suspect performed a citizen’s arrest on an National Intelligence Service officer who had been monitoring the former’s movements, forcing police at a precinct in Aghia Paraskevi to reveal the agent’s identity.