Shocking revelations about Mati wildfires show attempt to cover-up and silence investigators

21 July 2020
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The prosecutor is expected to act following shocking revelations in newspaper Kathimerini its Kyriakis that the Fire Brigade leadership attempted to cover-up its failings and avoid conducting any real investigation into the causes that resulted in the death of 102 people in the 2018 wildfires in Mati, Attica.

In the audio, recorded by fireman Dimitris Liotsios, former Fire Brigade chief Vassilis Mattheopoulos can be heard urging the expert investigator to “bury any incriminating information because we will tear you apart”.

The audio also records the manner in which the department heads were thwarting efforts by the expert appointed to shed light on what went wrong during the critical hours of the fire.

Dimitris Liotsios (left) – former Fire Brigade chief Vassilis Mattheopoulos (right) 

As the audio shows, Dimitris Liotsios, who was assigned to investigate the tragedy, was instructed by Mr. Matheopoulos to write up a couple of sentences and not lay any blame on anyone. “Just make up some findings…it is not the fault of this..or that…If the data is incomplete f**ck it…don’t worry about it. The Prosecutor won’t tell you anything”.

Elsewhere in the audio he cane be heard pointing out the “instruction” he received from the “Minister”: “Do not write anywhere, I’m telling you, that responsibilities stem from the superiors. The Minister told me that. Call him, he told me to tell you. Do not write that the Mayor or Dourou (SYRIZA Attica Governor at the time) are responsible. Or a service or the Forest Service.”

The revelations has caused a political firestorm with Greek PM Kyriakos Mitsotakis saying the information coming to light is chilling.

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