NEWS

Limited inquiry ordered into prosecutor's Novartis allegations

IOANNA MANDROU

TAGS: Justice, Corruption

Supreme Court Prosecutor Xeni Dimitriou has agreed to reopen three criminal lawsuits filed by three prominent politicians who were implicated in the alleged bribery investigation involving Novartis, however the new probe will have a limited scope.

In 2018, former Conservative prime minister Antonis Samaras, former PASOK finance minister Evangelos Venizelos and EU Commissioner for Migration Dimitris Avramopoulos sued the prosecutors investigating the kickbacks allegedly paid by the Swiss drugmaker to boost drug sales and prices in Greece, as well as the secret witnesses who testified against them, and even against Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and Alternate Justice Minister Dimitris Papangelopoulos.

All three have denied any wrongdoing and claim the involvement of their names is politically motivated.

The lawsuits were filed by Deputy Supreme Court Prosecutor Ioannis Angelis, but last week he submitted a 10-page report calling for their reopening, citing new evidence.

Dimitriou has ordered an inquiry only into the accusations leveled against the corruption prosecutors handling the Novartis case. The lawsuit that concerns Tsipras and Papangelopoulos has been sent to Parliament while the part about the witnesses was filed by Angelis' predecessor, Dimitris Papageorgiou.

Dimitriou has also ignored Angelis' proposal to bring in the three politicians to testify regarding their accusations.

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