One suspect contract found
Thessaloniki Mayor Yiannis Boutaris revealed at a meeting of the city’s municipal council yesterday that checks on employees’ contracts have so far only revealed one case that might have breached regulations. Boutaris told councilors that out of 779 municipal employees who had their contracts made permanent in 2006, after being hired on fixed-term deals, around 500 have been checked so far. “So far, we have only found one that might have a problem,” he added. The government has asked for the checks because it believes that some of the permanent hires made throughout the public administration in 2006 were illegal. Boutaris said the checks would be completed within the next few days.
A 63-year-old motorist was killed and his 54-year-old wife seriously injured yesterday after their car was hit by an oncoming cargo train in the area of Akropotamos, west of Thessaloniki. According to police, the crash occurred shortly after 12.30 p.m. when the car drove onto railway lines at a level crossing, though the exact circumstances of the incident remained unclear. The motorist died instantly in the collision while his wife was transferred to the northern city’s Ippokrateio hospital.
Unidentified burglars yesterday broke into the home of a 35-year-old visually impaired woman in Kardamitsia, a suburb of the northwestern city of Ioannina, and robbed her of 20,000 euros in cash and other valuables, police said. According to the account given to police by the victim, there were at least two perpetrators. They knocked on the front door and forced their way in to the woman’s home before tying her to a chair and raiding the premises.
A Thessaloniki court is today to hear the trial of former mayor of Thessaloniki, Vassilis Papageorgopoulos, who faces charges of money laundering. The 67-year-old, who is serving a 12-year sentence at nearby Diavata Prison for embezzling nearly 18 million euros from municipal coffers, underwent surgery after suffering a heart attack early last month. The former official was originally sentenced to life in prison but the term was reduced to 12 years on appeal. Court sources indicated that the trial for money laundering is likely to be postponed.
A minimarket owned by a Bangladeshi man on Crete burned down early yesterday. The store, located in the center of Iraklio, may have been targeted by arsonists. The fire service said that it was investigating all possible causes for the blaze, which was extinguished before it caused damage to the surrounding homes. Nobody was injured.