Tsochatzopoulos denies charges, calls trial a 'personal attack'
Former Defense Minister Akis Tsochatzopoulos on Monday denied all charges brought against him for laundering money he allegedly accepted as bribes for defense contracts in a trial where he stands accused alongside another 16 defendants, including his wife Viki Stamati and his daughter Areti Tsochatzopoulou.
Speaking in court, Tsochatzopoulos argued that no other politician had ever faced such an organized personal attack in the country’s post-dictatorship era. He also stated that he had no illegal properties or bank accounts and that the charges brought against him were fabricated and part of an organized plan devised by political and judicial organizations operating in the country in the last few years.
The former minister claimed that former PASOK chief and ex-Prime Minister George Papandreou was responsible for his incrimination. He claimed that Papandreou had ordered a parliamentary committee conducting a preliminary investigation on the case to build a 'despicable' indictment which was subsequently transformed and forwarded to court by local prosecutors.
Tsochatzopoulos also referred to the temporary detention of his wife as “inhuman."