ATHENS – In the wake of a cleaning lady sentenced to jail for 10 years for faking an elementary school diploma, a senior Greek prosecutor is now reportedly looking into media reports the former director of two major hospitals falsified his degrees to get the jobs.
Supreme Court prosecutor Xeni Dimitriou ordered the Piraeus Prosecutors Office to investigate allegations concerning the qualifications of Nikaia General Hospital’s chief from September 2016 until last December, said Kathimerini.
His name was not revealed but he’s accused of having four higher university degrees in his file with the human resources department of the Administrative Reform Ministry that are not the same to those in his personnel file.
The allegations are partly based on claims by the union of Greek hospital doctors (POEDIN), which said said he failed to put his personnel records under scrutiny along with those of his staff while he was head of the Thriaseio Hospital in 2014 during an inspection of the qualifications claimed by all employees at the state-run facility.
There have been widespread reports of people using fake diplomas and credentials to get jobs but no major prosecutions before the cleaning lady case that outraged people who screamed about a double standard.
In November, 2018, the school janitor who was given a 10-year jail sentence for forging a certificate saying she had a sixth grade education was released from jail on health grounds while her sentence, condemned by critics for being too harsh, is being looked at again.
A court in Larissa, central Greece month sentenced the 53-year-old, who had worked in a publicly-funded nursery for 15 years, on charges of defrauding the public although others who committed the same crime weren’t prosecuted or even fired in some cases.
Blistered by public outrage, Supreme Court prosecutor Xeni Dimitriou said she will speed a review of the case and sentence. She intervened to have another judicial consideration of the sentence which sparked fury from unions, rights group and political parties.
The country’s Supreme Court prosecutor said it would re-examine the ruling. Speaking to reporters outside the court, the 53-year-old, who wasn’t identified, said she was in a bad psychological condition. She said her actions had been driven by the need to provide for her children as her husband is disabled.
“This decision is not simply inhuman. It is another very indicative sign of permanent pathogens in the criminal justice system,” the Hellenic League for Human Rights said in a statement before the decision to release her.