Ministry officials held for attempting to bribe hoteliers

Two Development Ministry officials have been arrested on suspicion of soliciting a 120,000-euro bribe from two businessmen set to make a 4.7-million-euro investment in the Peloponnese.

The two employees, both 61, were employed in the ministry?s private investment department and were responsible for assessing whether projects could qualify for state funding.

The pair had allegedly demanded the under-the-table payment from two brothers who owned a hotel in Argolida and were thinking of making a further investment.

One of the brothers tipped off the police and a sting was set up to trap the pair.

They arranged to meet one of the businessmen on Tuesday at Kerameikos metro station in Athens, where they were both arrested after accepting marked banknotes.

Officers said that a search of the suspects? homes revealed they were storing a total of 155,000 euros in cash.

Police said that anyone who has similar cases of corrupt civil servants to report should call 210.647.6823. or e-mail