Ex-minister claims Lagarde list panel set on indicting him

Former Finance Minister Giorgos Papaconstantinou did not appear on Thursday before a parliamentary committee investigating his handling of the so-called Lagarde list of some 2,000 wealthy Greek depositors, submitting instead a nine-page deposition in which he accuses the panel of having already decided to indict him to trial.

In the deposition, Papaconstantinou refers to a “flagrant insult to my rights” and suggests he will take legal action in Greek and international courts.

He claims the charges against him were “handed down to serve political interests.” He adds that the memory stick containing the list given to his successor as finance minister, Evangelos Venizelos, by the then head of the Financial Crimes Squad (SDOE), Yiannis Diotis, is not the same as the one he had given to Diotis. He also describes as a “mockery” the fact that he was given 17 days to study a 20,000-page case file.

Meanwhile, the committee narrowly rejected – by seven votes to six – a proposal by leftist opposition SYRIZA for Venizelos to be resummoned. SYRIZA MPs had wanted to question Venizelos about a police examination of computers seized from the Finance Ministry which, they claim, reinforces Diotis’s claim that the USB found to have been tampered with was given to Venizelos in July 2011, not in August of that year, as the latter had claimed.

SYRIZA’s Nikos Voutsis said that the party might seek to broaden the charges being considered so as to include Venizelos.