NEWS

Focus on ex-minister after bribe convictions

Akis Tsochatzopoulos, the former PASOK defense minister who has been charged with accepting bribes for the purchase of submarines, was the focus of German press reports on Wednesday following the conviction of two ex-managers of a German firm found to have paid bribes for state contracts in Greece.

An article in the Suddeutsche Zeitung said the ex-minister had received ?a large sum as a bribe,? adding that millions of euros had been sent to Athens via Switzerland, Cyprus and the US. The article also claimed that the cash had been used to buy property, including Tsochatzopoulos?s current home.

The report notes that the former minister was not named by the president of the Munich court that convicted the two ex-managers of German industrial services company Ferrostaal. ?Submarines are purchased by politicians, not by individuals,? Skai quoted the court president as saying. Tsochatzopoulos was defense minister when the submarines were purchased.