By Milko for Gangsters Inc.
Vassilis Stefanakos (photo above) was born in 1961 in a suburb of Athens, Greece. He was involved in smuggling oil and cigarettes, drug trafficking, and protection rackets. After the death of his boss at the start of the 21st century, he became one of the new leaders of his organization, alongside Aristidis Lakiotis and Ioannis Skaftouros.
It is alleged that Stefanakos ordered the murder of rival crime boss Themis Kalapotharakos, but he was never convicted. However, in 2006, the law did find him guilty in absentia of assault, smuggling, and racketeering, and sentenced him to 14,5 years in prison. Thanks to false identities given to him by corrupt police, he managed to evade justice.
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Until January 2008, when he was arrested in the vicinity of his residence in the Athens suburb of Haïdari. Later, he was also sentenced to 21 years behind bars for his involvement in a murder committed by Alket Rizai and for helping Rizai and Vassilis Palaiocostas during a prison break in 2006.
He was released from prison in August of 2016 thanks to an early release law passed by the Greek government in 2015. He didn’t get to enjoy his freedom for long. On January 17, 2018, Stefanakos was shot dead in Haïdari, Athens. He was 57 years old.
- READ: Profile of Greek crime boss Panagiotis Vlastos
Assassins used at least one AK-47 and police found at least 22 bullet casings at the murder scene. They were waiting for Stefanakos and ambushed him when he exited his home. He wasn’t an easy target because he always moved around in an armored car and with a bodyguard.
As he was about to get into his car, the hitmen came riding in on a motorcycle. One of the men opened the passenger door and sprayed bullets at the defenseless crime boss.
Milko (a pseudonym) is a Dutchman who has studied organized crime in the Netherlands, its history, and its offshoots in foreign countries for over two decades. He is also very knowledgeable about crime in other European countries and is eager to share his information.
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