Living in Greece

A practical guide to moving, living, working & traveling in Greece, plus musing and misadventures from an American in Athens

Archive for August, 2008

Greek homes burglarized by takeaway scam

Residents might want to think twice about how they order takeaway food as a way to safeguard their home, with the recent spike in burglaries coinciding with Greek cities going empty in August.

A number of homes in the northern and suburbs of Athens have fallen victim to a scam involving callers pretending to represent establishments delivering pizza or other food, then robbing residents that don’t answer their home phone and are potentially absent. If a resident is home and answers the phone, the caller then shifts to verifying a non-existent order and address, apologizes for the error and hangs up.

Police say that these callers are either trolling the phone book for people living in affluent areas or they are former employees of legitimate eating establishments who took note of the perceived wealth of a home, then saved the information for future use.

Anyone receiving a suspicious call is encouraged to note the number if your phone has caller ID and alert police, especially if someone comes to the door.

Preventative measures

– Use your cell phone to order takeaway, instead of your home phone (stathero)

– Consider a timer that turns lights on/off automatically

– Tell a trusted neighbor that you will be away, so (s)he can keep an eye on things

– Leave the stereo or TV on to confuse anyone coming to the door

– Have calls forwarded to you or a friend/relative that will be home

In the News

Police chase in Glyfada” – Kathimerini (September 2008)
Burglary spree in Attica” – Kathimerini (November 2008)

Related posts

Cockroaches and courthouses, landlords and leases in Athens
Save money with off-peak electricity rates from DEH
Give me a break!

Photo from

Mykonos tourist dead after nightclub beating

Doujon ZammitA 20-year-old tourist, who had been beaten into a coma by nightclub bouncers on Mykonos, was disconnected from life support by doctors and has died.

Doujon Zammit from Australia suffered serious head injuries from being struck with a metal bat, after he and his friends allegedly stole a handbag from the Tropicana nightclub (now closed) near the island’s infamous Super Paradise. The 25-year-old bouncer admits to hitting Zammit, but only with his fists, although a metal bat was found in his possession and was proved to be the weapon that bashed the young tourist to death.

It was decided to turn off life support when a series of tests revealed there was no hope of recovery. Zammit’s family has graciously donated Doujon’s organs, and his father Oliver maintains that Greece is, “a beautiful country with wonderful people,” and the tragedy was “bad luck.”

Doujon’s heart will go to an Australian-Greek national in Athens, and the rest of his organs will be used “to save Greek people,” said Maria Kairi, general director of the Henry Dunant hospital.

Questions raised

– Was a handbag ever found in their possession? And if it was, is that a license to beat someone dead?
– Did Zammit’s Italian-Maltese descent play a factor in being singled out?
– Why did Athens police only learn about this incident from the Australian Embassy 10 hours after it happened and not from local Mykonos police?
Why did the Greek media list the nationalities of everyone involved, except those guilty of the beating? They finally listed their nationalities as ‘Greek’ here, after 2 weeks of listing everyone else’s but not the guilty. For the record, the proper journalistic standard is to not list anyone’s nationality.
– Is anyone else left speechless by the Zammit family’s world class humanity, understanding and generosity?

If you have Facebook, you can get to know more about this young man and leave a message in his memory.

News stories about the incident

Athens Red Cross names wing after Doujon” – ABC
Officer linked to Zammit beating death” — Kathimerini
“Mourners applaud Doujon at funeral” (removed) –
Zammit’s father pleas with Greek ministry for better health care” – ABC News
Doujon’s heart will stay close to home” – The Times
Park memorial for Greece assault victim” – The Age
“Young Australian bashed to death in Greece” (newspaper closed) – Birmingham Star
Australian tourist dies in Greece” – The Age
“Grieving family turns off Doujon Zammit’s life support” (removed) –
Australian man’s life hangs in the balance” – Kathimerini
Law of the land vs. law of the night” – Kathimerini
Shock at island beating” – Kathimerini
British tourist Matthew Cryer dead under suspicious circumstances in Zakynthos, and his body sent home with no heart” — Telegraph

News stories about the trial/conviction

“Zammit family unhappy with verdicts” (article removed) — ABC
Bouncer jailed, but others free on bail in Zammit case” — The Age
Greek bouncer sentenced 22.5 years for killing Australian tourist in Mykonos” — Sydney Morning Herald
Greek bouncer found guilty in Zammit trial” — Sydney Morning Herald
Detailed account of how Australian tourist Doujon Zammit died in Mykonos, Greece” — Australian
Harrowing start to Aussie tourist death trial in Greece” — Australian
Zammit family & recipient of Doujon’s heart in Lesbos for murder trial” — Australian
Australian witnesses vital to (Zammit) murder case in Greece” — Sydney Morning Herald
Doujon Zammit – tourist killed by Mykonos bouncer – honored at Greek wedding in Australia” — Australian


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