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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 16-08-02

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>

CONTENTS

  • [01] Refugee crisis discussed between Athens mayor, IRC head
  • [02] Court hands down 5 life sentences in 'Noor One' drug ship case; 13 convicted

  • [01] Refugee crisis discussed between Athens mayor, IRC head

    The refugee crisis and initiatives to promote integration and education of refugees were discussed between Athens Mayor George Kaminis and the President and CEO of the International Rescue Committee (IRC) David Miliband in Athens on Tuesday.

    Kaminis informed Miliband about the policies implemented by the municipality to manage the refugee issue, which includes providing temporary shelter in apartments, adopting actions for integration and the management of the accommodation center in Eleonas, which Miliband described as exemplary.

    The two officials also discussed ways to support the local economy in the capital's neighbourhoods with a program distributing pre-paid cards.

    [02] Court hands down 5 life sentences in 'Noor One' drug ship case; 13 convicted

    A Piraeus Criminal Appeals Court on Tuesday handed down sentences of life imprisonment and fines for five of the 13 main defendants found guilty for the 2.1 tonnes of heroin discovered in the "Noor One" freighter. The ship was intercepted while en route from the United Arab Emirates to Elefsina in June 2014.

    In spite of the contrary recommendation of the public prosecutor in the case, the court ordered the release of five defendants found guilty of lesser charges in the case, suspending the execution of their sentences until their case was tried by a higher-level court. All five were released with restrictions, such as a requirement to report to a police station at regular intervals.

    The stiffest sentence was for 59-year-old shipping broker "Captain George" who was found guilty of transporting drugs and sentenced to life imprisonment plus nine years, as well as a fine of 600,000 euros. A 42-year-old ship owner found guilty of the same offence, who was alleged to be actively involved in transporting the massive drug haul, was sentenced to life imprisonment plus eight years, with a fine of 300,000 euros.

    The same prison sentence with a fine of 200,000 euros each was handed down for three men of Turkish descent arrested in a warehouse in Koropi where a large part of the confiscated drugs were found. A fourth man, also of Turkish descent, was found guilty as a simple accomplice in the transportation of drugs and was sentenced to eight years, suspended pending appeal.

    Similarly, the ship owner's driver and aide was given a 10-year sentence, suspending pending appeal, while the man allegedly involved with renting the Koropi warehouse was sentenced to 18 years with an 80,000 euro fine.

    A sentence of 16 years in jail and a fine of 60,000 euros was handed down to an Iranian man that "escorted" the heroin shipment at sea, while three Greek business people found guilty of being accomplices and variously linked to the ownership, leasing and commercial exploitation of the "Noor One" were sentenced to eight and 10 years, respectively. All three were released and their sentence suspended pending appeal, with the requirement that they report to a police station every 15 days. For one of the three, a former football club official, the court also imposed a fine of 40,000 euros.

    The Turkish owner of the truck intercepted in Piraeus port was sentenced to eight years in prison.

    Eighteen of the 32 defendants on trial for the "Noor One" case have been acquitted.

    The public prosecutor in the case had advised against the suspension of the sentences, emphasising the extremely large quantity of drugs involved, in terms of both Greek and European standards. She noted that the 2.1 kilos of heroin confiscated were of very high purity and would have been cut to produce at least eight tonnes for sale on the street, a quantity that would have certainly led to the deaths of thousands if not intercepted.


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