The former head of the Financial Crime Squad (SDOE), Yiannis Diotis has been handed a 10-year suspended sentence over his handling of the so-called Lagarde list of wealthy Greeks with Swiss bank deposits.
Diotis denounced the decision by a three-member appeals court of Athens saying it was a “black day” not for himself but for justice. The court said that, with his actions, Diotis allowed people on the list - named after former French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde, now head of the International Monetary Fund - to avoid inspection.
“I feel shame and anger about the decision,” he said, adding that “there was neither a testimony nor a document that could have suggested guilt.” He also said that the court closed its “eyes and ears on the truth and the lawful process.”
Diotis has admitted to making a copy of the Lagarde list on to a memory stick in 2011 from a flash drive handed to him by former finance minister Giorgos Papaconstantinou before handing the stick to the latter’s successor Evangelos Venizelos. Lagarde had given the list to Greek authorities in 2010 to help in their effort to crack down on tax evasion.
The ruling on Tuesday came after a prosecutor had, earlier in the month, called for Diotis, to be cleared of any wrongdoing with regard to the list.
According to Calliope Dagianta, Diotis’s actions actually saved the electronic files with details of the 2,059 depositors.