Novartis Whistleblower, Now Suspect, Barred from Leaving Greece

January 13, 2019

ATHENS – An unmasked whistleblower who is one of three who said 10 rival politicians of the ruling Radical Left SYRIZA-led coalition took bribes from the Swiss pharmaceutical company Novartis has lost an appeal against a court-ordered travel ban.

Former Health Ministry advisor Nikos Maniadakis, who was stopped earlier at the international airport as he was trying to get to Madrid where it was said he worked, is being charged with bribery and embezzlement and had his passport taken away.

In an extensive statement, Nikos Maniadakis tried to assure judges that he was not a flight risk and pointed to what he called failings by prosecutors in the investigation and contradictions leading him to be called a suspect instead of a witness, said Kathimerini.

The investigation concerns allegations the drugmaker bribed doctors and public officials, including two former Prime Ministers and Bank of Greece Governor Yannis Stournaras, to increase its access to the Greek market and sell its products at inflated prices.

It is largely based on the testimonies of the three key witnesses whose identities were being kept secret under whistleblower laws although they haven’t produced a shred of evidence reportedly beyond hearsay testimony and one is said to be changing her story.

Maniadakis told Skai TV earlier in the month that the charges of accepting bribes that have been brought against him are politically motivated but refused to say who was allegedy behind that either.


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WASHINGOTN - The full text of Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis’ speech to the Joint Session of the US Congress is as follows: Madam Speaker, Madam Vice President, Honorable Members of the United States Congress, Ladies and Gentlemen, There is no greater honor for the elected leader of the people who created democracy than to address the elected representatives of the people who founded their country on the Greek model and have promoted and defended democratic values ever since.

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