NEWS

Ministers are called over 'Lagarde list'

Parliament?s ethics and transparency committee on Monday voted in favor of Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras and three former ministers -- Evangelos Venizelos, who now leads socialist PASOK, Filippos Sachinidis and Giorgos Papaconstantinou -- being called before the House to reveal what they know about the so-called ?Lagarde list? -- a list of some 2,000 Greeks with deposits in Swiss banks who are being probed for tax evasion.

According to sources, Venizelos and Papaconstantinou testified over the weekend before financial prosecutor Grigoris Peponis in connection with the list, which Papaconstantinou claims to have received from former French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde, who is now head of the International Monetary Fund. No details about the former ministers? testimonies were released but they are believed to have repeated the positions they have expressed publicly to date on the matter.

In an interview with state television channel Net, Venizelos claimed not to have been informed by his predecessor Papaconstantinou about the Lagarde list.

In a separate corruption probe, it emerged that a Greek businessman who had been accused of being part of the bribery and money-laundering network involving former Defense Minister Akis Tsochatzopoulos has been found dead in a hotel room in Jakarta, Indonesia. Vlassis Kambouroglou was the managing director of Drumilan International, which was involved in the sale of a Russian-made TOR-M1 missile system to Greece.

Meanwhile the former head of arms procurements at the Defense Ministry, Yiannis Sbokos, once a close aide of Tsochatzopoulos, was remanded in custody on Monday after testifying before an investigating magistrate in connection with the money-laundering racket.

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