Police on Thursday shot and arrested a 36-year-old Albanian man who had just carried out a robbery in a branch of Alpha Bank in Arta and then threatened a police officer at gunpoint. The officer responded by opening fire in self-defence, wounding him in the right arm and shoulder. The arrested man was taken to Arta hospital for treatment, where doctors said his injuries were not serious.

Investigating officers subsequently identified the suspect as the same man that had threatened a car owner and his mother in Thesprotia earlier the same day when they discovered him attempting to steal their car, firing shots at the ground and at the car owner.

The suspect is then believed to have driven the car to Arta and carried out the robbery at Alpha Bank, taking 32,205 euro. As he was running back toward the vehicle, however, he was spotted by a police patrol and there was a shootout that resulted in his injury.

Further investigation showed that the suspect was an escaped convict from Patras Prison, who had failed to return from prison furlough in October 2010 and had been wanted since that time. He was originally incarcerated in January 2001 to serve a 42-year sentence for repeated robberies and thefts.

Police have confiscated the gun, ammunition and the money that was found on him at the time of his arrest. He will be led before the Arta public prosecutor in order to be charged, while local police are also investigating his possible involvement in other thefts and robberies.