NEWS

Prosecutors? claims reexamined

The two financial prosecutors who threatened to resign over alleged interference in their work are expected to make more detailed accusations over the next couple of days after asking the Supreme Court to reopen the investigation into their claims.

Spyros Mouzakitis and Grigoris Peponis made the request in writing Tuesday, only four days after the Supreme Court had closed the probe before either had submitted any evidence. However, the court agreed to give the prosecutors until Wednesday to submit any evidence they may have that backs their claims they were pressured.

Supreme Court deputy prosecutor Fotis Makris said the pair would have to submit ?full and detailed written explanations.? Sources told Kathimerini that Peponis and Mouzakitis were prepared to do that and that they would name the people they believed were attempting to influence their work.

Peponis and Mouzakitis had recently launched investigations into a number of high-profile cases, including major tax evasion, claims that tax officials did not collect fines on fuel trading firms, banks? funding of Alter TV, allegations of benefits cheating and claims of fiddled statistics at the Hellenic Statistical Authority (ELSTAT).

They were also investigating the continued financing of indebted political parties by banks, claims of corruption at tax offices and major tax evasion cases.

Yiannis Kapeleris, who resigned on Monday as the Finance Ministry?s general secretary for tax and customs after Peponis charged him with breach of faith, Tuesday denied that he waived fines on some 3,500 gas stations for illegal fuel trading.

Kapeleris said that the fines were for gas stations which had failed to record sales of vehicle fuel and heating oil on time via an electronic system. He said the system was problematic and a law was due to be passed that would recognize the traders had not been at fault.

Speaking on the condition of anonymity to journalists Tuesday, a senior Development Ministry source suggested that the Finance Ministry had been dragging its feet over the past year on the issue of employing an electronic system that could adequately check the fuel that gas stations receive from suppliers and then sell to customers.