NEWS

Bill boosts penalties for corruption in public life

A bill aimed at cracking down harder on corruption, particularly in the public sector, foresees prison terms of more than five years and fines of up to 150,000 euros for offenders while offering protection to whistleblowers, Kathimerini understands.

The Justice Ministry legislation, which was submitted for public consultation on Monday and is to be discussed until March 24, notes that all offenders, ranging from the president and prime minister to the lowest-ranking employee, will face the same penalties.

The bill also seeks to protect those who provide authorities with information relating to crimes that led to money being swindled from state coffers. If the informer is implicated in the corruption case, he or she will receive more lenient treatment. If they are not involved in the case, these

“witnesses for the public interest” will be offered protection from possible intimidation or revenge attacks, according to the provisions of the bill.

The same legislation aims to crack down on cases of corruption in the private sector though the penalties foreseen are more lenient than those for public sector officials found guilty of graft.

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