Trial of 120 fake blindness benefit takers starts on Chios

TAGS: Crime, Society

The trial of 120 fraudulent beneficiaries of state benefits for the blind began on the eastern Aegean island of Chios on Thursday.

The beneficiaries, 15 of whom have died since charges were lodged against them, are all alleged to have pocketed benefits without having any visual impairment.

According to the charge sheet, the defendants secured the benefits by providing authorities with forged certificates of blindness. The defendants face multiple charges of defrauding the state. 

Inspections on the Ionian island of Zakynthos in 2012, meanwhile, revealed that 388 islanders had used fake blindness certificates to claim benefits, costing the state millions of euros a year.