Yacht crew charged for arson on Greek island of Hydra

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Thirteen crew members of a yacht have been charged with arson after fireworks launched from their vessel allegedly started a forest fire on the Greek island of Hydra island.

According to AMNA.gr, the Greek crew of the tourist yacht Persefoni I were arrested on Saturday at an Athens area marina after allegations that they started the forest fire late on Friday.

The crew members appeared before a prosecutor at the Piraeus court on Sunday afternoon.

Authorities are also in the process of temporarily confiscating the Persefoni I, which had been chartered by a group from Kazakhstan.

Greek yacht crew faces prosecutor over wildfire incident on Hydra
Greek yacht crew faces prosecutor over wildfire incident on Hydra. Photo: Protothema.

The crew members have denied any involvement in the fire and the use of fireworks. If found guilty, they could face severe penalties, including up to 20 years in prison and substantial fines for causing ecological damage. The arrests were made as part of the ongoing investigation into the cause of the wildfire.

Greece’s Climate Crisis and Civil Protection Minister Vassilis Kikilias reported that the fire scorched 300 hectares of forest.

Over a span of 24 hours, Greece experienced 66 wildfires, with firefighting teams working diligently to control the remaining active fires. Authorities have called for heightened vigilance due to the high fire risk in several regions, including Attica, the Peloponnese, and central Greece.

Source: AMNA.gr and Ekathimerini.

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