Cyprus ex minister faces prosecutor in Tsochatzopoulos trial

Former Cypriot Interior Minister Dinos Michailides was to face an appeals court prosecutor in Athens following his extradition to the Greek capital for trial in connection with a money-laundering racket centered around former Greek Defense Minister Akis Tsochatzopoulos.

Michailidis, who was being detained at the Athens police headquarters on Thursday night following his arrival in the capital, has been implicated in the laundering of money from kickbacks that Tsochatzopoulos is alleged to have pocketed from the purchase of Russian missile systems.

Last week, a court in Limassol ruled that Michailides’s son, Michalis, should be extradited for trial for the same case. The latter has appealed the ruling.

Both father and son have been linked to an offshore firm named Beeston, one of several allegedly used by Tsochatzopoulos to cover the trail of kickbacks from defense deals.

Public prosecutors have called for the Greek ex defense minister to be meted a heavy sentence for «cheating the Greek state and its people,» claiming that the evidence incriminating the former socialist strongman is «overwhelming.»

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