NEWS

Samaras names former premier, justice minister in Novartis case probe

IOANNA MANDROU

TAGS: Justice

Former conservative prime minister Antonis Samaras on Tuesday submitted a 32-page memo to the Supreme Court prosecutor investigating the judicial handling of the Novartis bribery case.

The memo is intended to back the ex-premier's claims of a frame-up, presenting evidence that accusations he – and another nine high-ranking politicians – accepted bribes from the pharmaceutical firm were fabricated by political rivals.

The frame-up, Samaras claims, was orchestrated by officials in the former SYRIZA-led government, who used their influence to interfere with the judicial process so that unfounded corruption charges could be brought against their rivals.

Responding to questions from the media following his testimony at the Supreme Court in Athens on Tuesday, Samaras said that he has specifically named former SYRIZA prime minister Alexis Tsipras and ex-deputy justice minister Dimitris Papangelopoulos.

A Supreme Court prosecutor is investigating how colleagues handled witness claims that 10 former government officials received bribes from the Swiss firm in order to grant it preferential treatment, after the case was consigned to the archive for a lack of evidence.

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