ECONOMY

Former Cypriot central banker begins jail term

Cyprus ex-central bank chief Christodoulos Christodoulou was jailed for five months for tax evasion on Monday after failing to declare a 1-million-euro cash transfer.

It was among six tax-related charges Christodoulou had pleaded guilty to before the Nicosia district court earlier this month.

Christodoulou, who is also a former finance minister, was taken straight to prison from the courthouse to begin serving his sentence.

The court also slapped a 13,500-euro fine on the consultancy to which Christodoulou transferred the funds, a firm he co-owned with his daughter.

Christodoulou had transferred the money from a Greek business in 2007, just a few months after his five-year term as central bank chief expired.

Following an investigation, Christodoulou declared his real income for that year and paid the outstanding tax owed to the state.

In its ruling, the court said it intended the sentence to act as a deterrent to others and to demonstrate that no one was above the law.

He served as finance minister from 1994 to 1999 and then as interior minister, before taking up the central bank post in 2002.

[AFP]