Former arms procurement chief Sbokos to face magistrate

The former head of arms procurements at the Defense Ministry, Yiannis Sbokos, was expected to appear before an investigating magistrate on Wednesday in relation to his involvement in a large-scale corruption racket, following his arrest late on Tuesday.

Sbokos was arrested in his office in central Athens, where police also seized a computer, while a search was also conducted at his residence in the northern suburb of Kifissia.

Sbokos, a close aide of former PASOK defense minister Akis Tsochatzopoulos and former PASOK deputy, is an alleged member of a group linked to kickbacks and money laundering amounting to some 80 million euros from arms sales.

According to testimony by Nikos Zigras, a cousin of Tsochatzopoulos?s and codefendant in the corruption case, Sbokos was allegedly a key figure in an intricate scheme developed to manage the former minister?s illegal properties. Sbokos allegedly received the kickbacks from the arms deals and subsequently invested the money in a listed company onwed by his father-in-law.

Besides Zigras?s testimony, further evidence of Sbokos?s alleged involvement in the case was detected in various notes seized at Tsochatzopoulos?s office, in which the latter demanded money from his aide.

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