NEWS

Witnesses from list to appear at journalist’s trial

The trial of investigative journalist Costas Vaxevanis was postponed on Monday to give his lawyers more time to call witnesses.

Vaxevanis was arrested on Sunday, a day after publishing in the magazine Hot Doc what he claims to be a true copy of a list submitted to Athens by French authorities in October 2010 with the names of Greeks with large deposits in a Swiss bank.

Vaxevanis faces charges of violating personal data. His lawyers, Haris Economopoulos and Nikos Constantopoulos, on Monday asked for a three-day delay so that they could summon more witnesses. ?There are people included on the list who want to testify in court,? said Economopoulos.

Vaxevanis yesterday accused authorities of double standards by citing the recent example of a newspaper that published a list of well-known artists and their declared incomes. ?Journalism is uncovering the truth where others want to hide it. Everything else is nothing more than PR,? he said.

Vaxevanis claims that the list he published is a true copy of a list handed to Giorgos Papaconstantinou when Christine Lagarde was finance minister of France. The list was eventually submitted earlier this month to the government by Papaconstantinou?s successor, PASOK chief Evangelos Venizelos. A parliamentary investigation is under way to find out why the information on the list was not used to check whether the money in the accounts was legally obtained and taxed.

Authorities are questioning whether the list published by Vaxevanis is in fact the so-called ?Lagarde list? and, if so, whether it has been tampered with since it was first submitted in October 2010.

The fact that it does not contain dates or the amounts of the deposits has fueled suspicions that it may be not be a copy of the original Lagarde list.