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Athens News Agency: News in English, 09-05-29

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Fourth swine flu case in Greece
  • [02] International warrant for Siemens case suspect

  • [01] Fourth swine flu case in Greece

    The fourth case of the new H1N1 "swine flu" in Greece was confirmed by the Pasteur Institute in Athens on Friday.

    According to the national Health Operations Centre, the new case involves a 23-year-old woman that arrived from New York on Thursday night having flu-like symptoms, such as a cough, aching muscles and a runny nose, while her fever was being kept in check by medication prescribed in the United States.

    On arriving at Athens' Eleftherios Venizelos airport, the young woman acted on briefing material available to passengers and herself contacted the Hellenic Centre for Infectious Diseases Control, where she was submitted to tests.

    After doctors obtained a sample for testing, they gave the young woman treatment and advised her to remain home and meticulously observe all the necessary hygiene measures. When the test result came back positive, they immediately sent a specially equipped ambulance to take her to the 'Sotiria' hospital in Athens, where she will be admitted for treatment and an epidemiological investigation.

    In the meantime, the second and third patients diagnosed with swine flu in Greece, two travellers arriving from Edinburgh, are still in hospital for treatment but are considered to be doing well and will soon be discharged.

    [02] International warrant for Siemens case suspect

    The special examining magistrate investigating the Siemens' kickbacks scandal, Nikos Zagorianos, on Friday issued an international arrest warrant for the arrest of former Siemens executive Christos Karavelas.

    Karavelas had been summoned before the prosecutor earlier on Friday to answer charges of bribery and legalising income from illegal activities, but failed to appear. The charges concerned a contract signed between Siemens and Hellenic Telecommunications Organisation (OTE) in 1997 to digitalise OTE centres,

    According to Karavelas' lawyer Giannis Markoulakos, his client was not in Greece and not in a position to answer the charges against him. He had submitted a written memorandum with his client's defence to the examining magistrate on Thursday.

    On Friday morning, the public prosecutor in charge of the case Leonidas Nikolopoulos had issued orders to stop two other Siemens' case suspects, Georgios Skarpelis and Ilias Georgiou, from leaving the country.

    Appearing before Zagorianos, former OTE Executive Vice Chairman George Skarpelis asked for additional time to prepare his defence and was given until June 15. He also faces charges of bribery and legalising income from illegal activity for the 1997 contract.

    Skarpelis had earlier told the magistrate that he wished to appoint former minister Dimitris Tsovolas as his lawyer because the two lawyers previously representing him were insisting that they could not attend because the magistrate had failed to supply them with all the documents related to the case.

    Tsovolas accepted the appointment and asked for additional time to study the case file relating to the OTE digitalisation contract and his client, which the magistrate agreed to hand over.

    Georgiou appeared before the magistrate on Friday and was given until June 12 to prepare his defence, again for charges of bribery and legalising income from illegal activities.

    Karavelas is the second suspect in the Siemens scandal in Greece to flee abroad after Mihalis Christoforakos, who has taken refuge in Germany. As a holder of German nationality and a German passport, laws in Germany prevent Christoforakos' automatic extradition to Greece to stand trial.

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