Protests to last until Monday
Protesting farmers are to maintain their roadside blockades across the country until Monday when their union representatives are to meet with Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras, Labor Minister Yiannis Vroutsis and Agricultural Development Minister Athanasios Tsaftaris. Farmers are seeking tax breaks and other concessions and have been complaining about high fuel and production costs.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (KEELPNO) warned yesterday that there is likely to be a rising number of people contracting flu over the next few weeks, possibly including some serious cases. KEELPNO said that 42 people had fallen seriously ill during this flu season and that 12 had died. The organization said that in most cases, the victims had contracted the H1N1 strain of the virus and came from vulnerable groups for which inoculation is recommended.
Businessman and former Kavala soccer club owner Makis Psomiadis was yesterday charged with illegal betting in connection to a match-fixing ring that is under investigation. Psomiadis, currently in custody, is already facing charges of money laundering and forming a criminal gang.
Nikos Romanos, one of the four anarchists arrested following two bank robberies in northern Greece at the beginning of the month, has denied he is a member of the Conspiracy of the Cells of Fire urban guerrilla group. He issued a statement on Wednesday expressing solidarity with the group but denying reports linking him to it. Romanos said he would not cooperate with the justice system and repeated his call for others to take up arms.
A Thessaloniki appeals court yesterday slightly reduced a suspended jail term given to a children’s surgeon who was found to have accepted a 400-euro under-thetable payment (known as a “fakelaki”) for performing an operation on a minor in 2007. The unnamed surgeon, now retired, was found guilty of passive bribery. The appeals court reduced a 10month jail term, suspended for three years, to an eight-month suspended sentence.
Andreas Kouris, the chairman of the Real Media SA company that owns Avriani newspaper and the now-defunct Alter TV channel, was yesterday indicted for debts of 2 million euros to the Social Security Foundation (IKA). The arrears relate to the period that Kouris was vice president of Alter’s managing board. In early January, the 42-year-old was given a suspended four-year jail sentence for another 9 million euros in debts to IKA.