Memorial for slain pizza man

HARRY PEARL
Last updated 05:00 17/06/2013

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Paeroa residents are planning to commemorate the death of slain pizza-shop owner Jordan Voudouris this week but, a year on, police are still no closer to solving his murder.

An informal memorial service and blessing of a small garden installed behind Mykonos Pizza and Pasta, where Mr Voudouris' body was found, will be held tomorrow.

And on Friday, a Greek-themed commemorative dinner will be held in his old restaurant.

According to Brian Smith, the chairman of Positive Paeroa, the anniversary will most likely be a quiet day of reflection for most in the town.

"It'll probably be something we all remember where we were the day it happened," he said.

Mr Voudouris, 55, well-liked in the Hauraki community, was shot dead on June 18 last year.

His body was found by a neighbouring shopkeeper in a pool of blood near the end of his driveway leading to Hall St.

The killing rocked the small town, and in the months that followed a 20-strong police team was assigned to the case, but little progress was made and the case appears to have stalled.

Mr Smith said the fact there had been no arrest had left a "bit of a gap" in the community.

Just days out from the anniversary of Mr Voudouris' death, police have renewed calls for people with information to come forward, and reminded the public that Operation Olive - the inquiry into the killing - remains open.

Detective Senior Sergeant Mike Whitehead, Western Waikato investigations manager, said investigators continued to assess information as it was received.

"In cases such as these, often people's loyalties or circumstances change and where someone may not have been in a position to speak to police at the time of Jordan's death, they may now feel free to do so."

Hauraki District Council mayor John Tregidga said the town was disappointed the murderer had not been found, but acknowledged the effort made by police.

Benny Tjan, who took over Mykonos Pizza and Pasta in September last year, has organised a Greek-themed commemorative dinner for Friday.

He said the event was already fully booked, a sign that the people of Paeroa will always treasure the memory of their favourite pizza man. 

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- Waikato Times

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