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Boy, 12, 'stabbed by children's entertainer' at five-star Greek hotel

An entertainer at a Greek island hotel was today charged with attempted murder and theft for allegedly stabbing a 12-year-old guest 20 times after being confronted over a theft.

Hoteliers on Crete said they would cover the expenses of the Russian boy's family in Greece for as long as his treatment lasts.

The Dutch suspect, who is 20, was formally accused by a prosecutor in the Cretan city of Iraklio and was jailed pending a court appearance next week.

The boy was severely injured in Tuesday night's attack, and was flown to a children's hospital in Athens for emergency surgery. Doctors say he suffered spinal cord damage and extensive chest and leg wounds.

"He has very serious injuries," said hospital chairman Haris Tombouloglou.

The boy had been on holiday with his mother at a five-star hotel in the Hersonissos region in northern Crete.

Police allege that the suspect stole the child's laptop computer and phone. They say that when the boy saw him with the gadgets, the Dutchman allegedly led him to a parking area, repeatedly stabbed him and left him for dead.

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The boy's mother raised the alarm after noticing her son missing from the hotel. Police searched the area for hours before finding the injured child in the early hours of yesterday, lying behind disused piping and building material.

The Greek hoteliers' association issued a statement expressing regret at the "tragic ... but isolated incident."

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