DNA holdup in March 2011 police deaths

Nearly a year after two members of the police force’s motorcycle-riding DIAS squad were shot dead in Rendi, southwestern Athens, forensic experts have failed to link DNA found at the site of the shooting to the six suspected robbers -- all ethnic Greeks from Russia -- charged in connection with the attack. Five of the suspects linked to the shootout last March have been in custody since May, while a sixth is believed to have fled to Russia.

The investigating magistrate assigned to the case, Evangelia Barbaressou, last week sent a letter to the police’s forensic department, asking for an “immediate” update on the progress of the analysis of the DNA found at the scene of the shooting. Barbaressou had sent a similar letter in October that reportedly went unanswered.

The shooting last March occurred after policemen chased a car linked to a robbery on a street kiosk. DIAS officers Giorgos Skyloyiannis, 22, and Yiannis Evangelinelis, 23, were killed when gunmen opened fire during the chase.

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