x

Society

Greece Seeks Foreign Bank Account Details of ex-Defense Chief

November 1, 2018

ATHENS – A Greek investigative-magistrate has asked officials in five European countries to reveal details of bank accounts belong to former defense minister Yiannis Papantoniou, who is being detained on charges of laundering 2.8 million euros ($3.18 million) in Swiss francs in alleged bribes for a 2003 contract to upgrade six Navy frigate.

Banks in France, the Netherlands, Belgium, Cyprus and Switzerland, where the former minister is alleged to have account were sent requests to give Greek investigators information on his holdings, said Kathimerini, citing source it didn’t reveal.

Papantoniou, who was born in Paris and is a French national, has rejected allegations that his bank accounts in France contain money from illegal activities but has objected to their being opened, the paper said.

Greek investigators also want to a French national who worked in a company involved in the frigate deal, who has been convicted for a series of crimes in France in which alleged briberies were paid in Greece as part of the deal.

The probe also is said to be focusing on Papantoniou’s acquisition and sale of a summer house on the island of Syros which he and his wife Stavroula Kourakou – who is also being detained – claim was a legal transaction although the seller was the same person who deposited the money into Swiss bank accounts for Papantoniou.

It will be up to the Greek Parliament though to decide whether the statute of limitations applies to the bribery allegations leveled against Papantoniou, although he can still be charged with money laundering.

The pair are being held in Attica’s high-security Korydallos Prison, after judicial authorities said they were a risk to fun because they rent a second home in Switzerland and have bank accounts there and that it was likely they would keep committing crimes if allowed to go free until trial.

Papantoniou denied charges of money laundering during a lengthy deposition before a corruption prosecutor during which the state charged he had cost 400 million euros ($458.37 million) in damages.

Papantoniou reportedly claimed had the procurement contract not been signed, he would have been accountable for serious offenses and would have harmed the interests of the state but denied everything.

Papantoniou and his wife had been convicted for trying to hide 1.3 million euros ($1.39 billion) in a Swiss bank account from Greek authorities but were allowed to buy out their jail sentences.

Papantoniou, 67, served under Socialist PASOK as Defense Minister from 2001-04 and Economy Minister from 1996 to 2001. The deals he signed during that time have been under the scrutiny of corruption prosecutors for years.

RELATED

ATHENS - A beach bar on Rhodes that has been operating unlawfully for years - on an archaeological site - was ordered shut yet again but given another reprieve and hundreds of others on the island will be allowed to continue operating.

Top Stories

Columnists

A pregnant woman was driving in the HOV lane near Dallas.

General News

NEW YORK – Meropi Kyriacou, the new Principal of The Cathedral School in Manhattan, was honored as The National Herald’s Educator of the Year.

Video

Alberto, Season’s First Named Tropical Storm, Dumps Rain on Texas and Mexico, Which Reports 3 Deaths

TAMPICO, Mexico (AP) — Tropical Storm Alberto rumbled toward northeast Mexico early Thursday as the first named storm of the season, carrying heavy rains that left three people dead but also brought hope to a region suffering under a prolonged, severe drought.

Armenia said it would recognize a Palestinian state on Friday, prompting Israel to summon its ambassador for what the Foreign Ministry described as a “severe reprimand.

LONDON (AP) — Taylor Swift fans enjoy parsing the singer-songwriter’s lyrics for references to her romantic life and insights into her state of her mind.

PARIS (AP) — The alleged rape of a 12-year-old Jewish girl in a suspected antisemitic attack has sent shockwaves throughout France and thrust concerns about antisemitism to the forefront of campaigning for the country’s legislative elections.

ATLANTA (AP) — Lionel Messi's passing brilliance got Argentina off to a winning start in the defense of its Copa America title, overcoming Canada and a poor playing surface at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. [email protected]

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.