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Police "recognize" Vassilis Paleokostas behind at least two bank robberies

27 February 2011 / 14:02:58  GRReporter
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Two consecutive bank robberies, which occurred on October 12, 2010 in the town of Eginio next to Katerini, with total booty of 231,000 Euros, will be investigated again by the Anti-terrorism squad, who believe that the famous criminal Vassilis Paleokostas is involved. 

According to senior police officers "of the 20 major robberies that have occurred in recent months across the country, both in Eginio seem most likely to be associated with the activity of Paleokostas”. 

Meanwhile, new information on the actions and accomplices of the wanted criminal came to the surface. On the other hand it seems that Paleokostas was not part of the bloody fight with police in the area of Livadia, which happened about 20 days ago, but it all happened because of a serious error of the driver of a black Audi, in which police found Paleokostas’ fingerprint. 

The double robbery in Eginio happened shortly before eight o'clock in the morning. The four participants arrived with a motorcycle and a BMW car and parked them very close to the National and Agricultural Bank branches, which are located 100 meters apart. They broke the windows of both banks with hammers and went inside. Each of the two "couples" was armed with pistols and Kalashnikov. 

The two criminals who robbed the National Bank grabbed from the open safe 206,000 Euros. According to some reports in Agricultural Bank the armed men demanded employees to open the safe, but they responded that it opens with a delay, so the robbers walked away only with 25,000 Euros taken from the cash registers. 

Police found that the used motorcycle and the car were stolen from Thessaloniki few days before the robberies. High ranked police officers define the robberies as "a well-organized, which seems to bear the stamp of Vassilis Paleokostas. Without, of course, excluding any other possibility, including the participation of persons from the former Soviet republics.” Greek police asked for the records of all mobile phones, which at the time of the robbery were located in the area. CTV cameras from the banks will also be examined thoroughly. 

Meanwhile police are convinced that Vassilis Paleokostas was not present in the black Audi, whose passengers shot at two police officers in Livadia on February 6. Officers have concluded that the two passengers are criminals, who have left from the northeastern suburbs of Athens to meet Paleokostas in his hideaway in Boeotia area. It is also believed that at least one of them is a foreigner. 

Police have available witnesses, and video material, which shows quite clearly that neither of the men is Vassilis Paleokostas. Video materials from the toll posts cameras in Afidnes and Shimatari are also being examined, in order to analyze the movements of the suspects before the bout in Livadia.

Police believe that the fingerprint of Vassilis Paleokostas, which was found on the rear door of the car, is from a previous trip of the 45-year-old criminal in it. 

Also, police have found that the participants in the clash with police have made a serious mistake. Although they had a fake license plate from another black Audi, which is owned by a resident from the island of Naxos, they have put a license plate from a Skoda. Police check gave quick results and so began the pursuit. 

Particularly interesting for the police are the results of data analysis from the robbery at a branch of National Bank in Aspra spitia, Boeotia area on February 11. Back then, 250,000 Euros were stolen and despite initial doubts about the participation of Paleokostas, this possibility is vanishing fast.

Tags: Vasilis Paleokostas bank robbery Agricultural bank Greece crime
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