Greek tax officer dies seven months after axe attack in office

THESSALONIKI (AP) — A tax office employee who had been attacked with an axe in his workplace nearly seven months ago has died, a Greek hospital administrator said yesterday.

The 56-year-old employee, who had serious head injuries and was in a coma, died late Saturday, administrator of the private ‘Blue Cross’ clinic in Thessaloniki Eleni Takouda told The Associated Press (AP) yesterday.

The victim was scheduled to go to a rehabilitation centre abroad, but restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic had postponed his transfer, said Head of the Western Macedonia Tax Officers’ Association Ilias Zoumboulis.

The employee, who was not named, was attacked when a 45-year-old man entered the tax office in the northwestern city of Kozani on July 16 without being subjected to any security screening, only a check on his temperature.

Once inside, he took a small axe out of a plastic bag he was carrying and attacked the man and two women employees in the head and face, shouting “Did you enjoy that?” and “This is what you deserve”, according to witnesses.

It was not clear what the attacker’s motive was and he was apparently not known to the victims.

A third woman was injured when she fell down a staircase while fleeing in panic. The man was restrained by two employees who threw themselves at him. He was arrested on the day and was charged with attempted murder and multiple aggravated assaults.