Mt Oeta manhunt tightens

Dozens of police officers with bloodhounds, backed by aerial surveillance, scoured mountainous terrain near Lamia for one of Greece’s most wanted criminals, who managed to evade arrest after being spotted in the central Greek town on Saturday. Nikolaos Palaiokostas, 42, who is sought for armed robbery, terrorism, kidnapping, hostage-taking, as well as possession of arms and ammunition, was located driving a battered Nissan car on the western outskirts of Lamia. Officers in a patrol car, who had been on the lookout for Palaiokostas – who is on the Interpol wanted list – following a tip-off, gave chase as the Nissan sped off toward the village of Frantzi, southwest of Lamia. Palaiokostas managed to shake off his pursuers, who found his car abandoned in fields near the village of Kabotades, 12 kilometers (7 miles) from Lamia. Police set up a cordon of roadblocks around the area, which Palaiokostas is believed to know very well, while officers with tracking dogs moved into the foothills of Mount Oeta as a helicopter monitored the region from the air. But Palaiokostas was still free late yesterday.