Ex-minister’s relatives to be quizzed

Financial prosecutors investigating the so-called Lagarde list of Greek depositors with Swiss bank accounts have summoned three relatives of former Finance Minister Giorgos Papaconstantinou whose names were removed from the list, Kathimerini understands.

According to sources, prosecutors on Friday summoned Papaconstantinou’s first cousin Eleni Papaconstantinou-Sikiaridis, her husband Symeon Sikiaridis and Andreas Rossonis, the spouse of another of the former minister’s cousins, Marina Papaconstantinou. The three, who were summoned as suspects but not charged, were given more time to prepare their explanations and are expected to appear before prosecutors again next week. Sources said they could face charges ranging from complicity in the doctoring of a document to tax evasion and money laundering, although a Financial Crimes Squad (SDOE) probe into the legality of the money in their accounts is not yet complete.

Papaconstantinou, who is adamant that his relatives’ wealth is legal, insisted over the weekend that the Lagarde list had been doctored by someone in a bid to incriminate him. To Vima newspaper quoted him as telling aides, “I know who doctored the list,” adding that he would not divulge the identity until a current investigation has yielded results. Papaconstantinou is also quoted by To Vima as blaming Evangelos Venizelos, his successor as finance minister and current PASOK leader, and former SDOE head Ioannis Diotis for failing to act on the list, although he does not accuse them of tampering with the material.

Leftist opposition SYRIZA is expected on Monday to submit to Parliament a proposal for Venizelos to be probed in connection with the Lagarde list as well as Papaconstantinou.