Ex-SDOE chief confuses Lagarde list probe

The former head of the Financial Crimes Squad (SDOE), Yiannis Diotis, offered confusion rather than clarity on Tuesday when he told prosecutors probing the political handling of the Lagarde list of Greeks with Swiss bank deposits that he had asked an aide to copy the USB stick containing the list given to him by ex-Finance Minister Giorgos Papaconstantinou and to erase one of the two copies.

In his deposition, Diotis said he asked his aide, Galateia Mane, to make a copy of the memory stick so as not to damage the original and then to erase it. It was unclear though which flash drive was wiped. Mane is to face prosecutors soon. Diotis insisted he had not tampered with the USB stick and asked for it to be put to a forensic test. He said he did not know the USB stick had come from French authorities and thought it was a product of the work of intelligence agents.

Party leaders are to decide on Wednesday how to proceed with Thursday’s vote on whether to hold an inquiry into the Lagarde list’s handling. They are to decide on whether to set up three ballot boxes – for different proposals by the coalition, leftist SYRIZA and the Independent Greeks together with ultra-right Golden Dawn – or four boxes for the politicians cited in the proposals: Papaconstantinou, Evangelos Venizelos and former PMs George Papandreou and Lucas Papademos.