NEWS

In Brief

Precinct escape

Two officers suspended after eight migrants break out Two policemen stationed at the precinct of Palaio Faliro, south of Athens, were suspended yesterday after eight detainees escaped from their cells by pulling out the bars of their windows. Of the eight men, four Palestinians, two Afghans and an Algerian had been due for deportation. The eighth, a Pakistani, had been detained on drug dealing charges. Officers later traced two of the Palestinians. The two officers on duty at the time of the group escape have been charged with neglect. Strong quake Tremor of 5.4 off Zakynthos A strong undersea quake, measuring 5.4 on the Richter scale, occurred off the coast of Zakynthos, just before 1.30 p.m. yesterday but no injuries or damage were reported. The quake’s epicenter was located in the seabed off the Ionian island’s southwestern coast, experts said. Ex minister burgled Apostolos Fotiadis, who served as deputy finance minister under the previous PASOK government in 1996, suffered minor injuries on Saturday night after two would-be burglars entered his home in the northeastern port of Alexandropouli. According to police, the two intruders entered Fotiadis’s home around 10.40 p.m. They reportedly threatened the ex minister and his wife at gunpoint but Fotiadis resisted, attacking one of the burglars with a chair. The intruder responded by hitting Fotiadis, 57, with the butt of his gun, leaving him with minor injuries. The intruders fled before police arrived at the scene, apparently empty-handed. Moored Strong winds, reaching up to 11 on the Beaufort scale, meant that many ferries remained moored to the ports of Piraeus and Rafina yesterday. Passengers due to travel to Aegean islands from Piraeus or other ports were advised to communicate with their travel agent or port authority officials for information about possible changes to scheduled departures. Bomb hoax An unidentified female caller phoned in a bomb threat to the police on Saturday evening, warning that an explosive device would detonate at the Parliament building in central Athens at exactly 8 p.m. Police cordoned off and searched the area after receiving the call at 7.42 p.m. but found no suspicious device. The woman had telephoned the police’s 100 emergency telephone number. Road fatality A one-year-old baby was killed instantly when the car in which he had been traveling veered off the road and crashed on a section of the national highway in the Peloponnesian prefecture of Messinia early on Saturday. Two of the baby’s brothers, aged 8 and 9, sustained minor injuries, while the 40-year-old driver, whose relationship to the children was not confirmed, emerged unscathed. Lagonissi ring Police late on Saturday detained two Albanians, aged 22 and 28, in Lagonissi, southeast of Athens, on multiple charges of theft. The two men are believed to be behind several burglaries in the areas of Lagonissi, Anavyssos and Koropi. Officers said they confiscated large quantities of jewelry and other valuables from the suspects’ homes.