Cash trail leads to ex-minister

Authorities prosecuting former Defense Minister Akis Tsochatzopoulos for alleged money laundering and bribery have evidence of dozens of transfers made to accounts at various European banks, which suggest that the ex-PASOK veteran received tens of millions of euros in kickbacks.

According to the data gathered from various banks, Tzochatzopoulos allegedly garnered some 100 million euros in bribes from the purchase of Russian missile systems and German submarines while he was minister. Most payments were made between 1998 and 2001, sources said.

Prosecutors say they have also found evidence that Tsochatzopoulos received some 13 million euros during the previous decade for the sale of several properties via offshore firms to the Vatopedi Monastery on Mount Athos.

Authorities, however, believe that there is a network of offshore firms and bank accounts that have yet to be investigated and which could provide further evidence of corruption, which the ex-minister denies.

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