Heart-op bank robber set free pending trial

An insurance salesman from northern Greece who robbed a bank last week to pay for his baby daughter’s life-saving heart operations was released from custody without bail yesterday, as judicial authorities agreed there was no risk of his trying to escape trial. Christos Kalafatis, 31, from the western Macedonian town of Yiannitsa, was arrested on Friday in his father’s car shortly after stealing 14,655 euros at gunpoint from tellers at an Egnatia Bank branch in the Thessaloniki district of Evosmos. The insurance salesman told police he needed the money to cover the cost of expensive heart surgery in London and Athens for his 8-month-old daughter. Under the terms of his release, Kalafatis must show up at his local police station once a month, and cannot leave Greece. But he will be granted special permission to accompany his daughter to London, if that proves necessary.

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