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Politics

Greek Prosecutors Charge 13 at State Disease Agency Over Funding

ATHENS – Charges of breach of faith have been brought by a prosecutor against 13 people, including a Bishop, over some 2 million euros ($2.21 million) for alleged unlawful state funding from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (KEELPNO.)

In a report, Kathimerini said that an investigation is underway trying to determine whether agency officials also benefited from contracts signed between 2007-09 for public information awareness campaigns, including nine members of the mananging board, fraud being common in Greece.

The case file showed five grants,  financial aid and other transactions paid by KEELPNO – which is under the authority of the health ministry and receives state funding – to companies as well as the Metropolitan (Diocese) of Kaisariani, Vyronos and Ymittos.

The Bishop there, who wasn’t identified in the story, was the church’s representative at KEELPNO and is the main suspect along with the then-President of the agency, the report said.

The paper said that the charges claim the Diocese received 18 grants worth 749,000 euros ($827,560) over 26 months for the information campaigns dealing with infectious diseases, helping the poor and immigrants and refugee camps for children on the island of Tinos.

According to the findings of the financial prosecutors, the grants were not used by the Diocese for these purposes but were allocated to “vague charitable expenses,” without indicating who may have profited.

The files of at least 20 companies that cooperated with KEELPNO during the period in question have been sent to the competent tax authorities for an audit, it was also reported.

The case is part of a larger probe into alleged financial mismanagement at KEELPNO, which began operating in 2012, then-financial prosecutor Grigoris Peponis ordering the investigation.

 

 

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