Supreme Court President Vassiliki Thanou said on Friday that she would step down from an investigation she was heading into a prosecutor’s decision to shelf a probe into businessman Andreas Vgenopoulos and his dealings with the now defunct Laiki Bank.
Thanou’s decision came after the prosecutor, Georgia Tsatani, asked for the country’s top judge to be removed from the investigation. Tsatani claimed that Thanou has close ties to Alternate Justice Minister Dimitris Papapangelopoulos, whom she accused of trying to force her to hand over the case so another prosecutor could take it on.
Thanou said she was stepping aside to “protect the standing and trust” in her role and the justice system overall. Tsatani’s disciplinary review will instead be led by Supreme Court Deputy President Aspasia Karellou.
The Supreme Court, meanwhile, has issued rulings allowing two of Vgenopoulos’s associates to be extradited to Cyprus for questioning after a request from authorities on the island.