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Soccer refereeing investigation goes into final stage

A judicial probe into alleged corruption in Greek soccer is entering its final phase, with 11 top officials due to give depositions to Court of First Instance deputy prosecutor Aristidis Koreas on September 15.

Koreas gave the officials, four from the Hellenic Footcall Federation (EPO), two from EPO’s Central Refereeing Committee (KED), two Super League club chairmen and three top-flight referees, more time to prepare their depositions last week.

The prosecutor is investigating two incidents. The first has to do with former Super League referee Petros Konstantineas. After refereeing a 2012 game between Xanthi and Olympiakos, which the team from northern Greece won 1-0, an explosive device went off outside a bakery owned by Konstantineas. He later told judicial authorities that two EPO officials had pressured him before the game to favor one of the two teams in the match. Konstantineas was only assigned to one more game that season and announced his retirement immediately afterward.

The prosecutor has collected the phone records of several soccer officials from that period as part of the evidence for his case file.

The other aspect of Koreas’s probe has to do with the way referees were assigned to Super League games. This was prompted by a Kathimerini report in 2012.

Koreas has since questioned 15 people, including EPO officials, referees and club executives, as part of his investigation into claims that regulations were not followed when choosing who would officiate games in the 2012-13 season.

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