Civil prosecutors press case against ex-minister

Civil prosecutors in the money-laundering trial of former Defense Minister Akis Tsochatzopoulos on Friday insisted on the unshakeability of the evidence against the former socialist strongman.

One of the prosecutors, Argyro Fanouraki, referred to a “mass of solid evidence” against Tsochatzopoulos, who is accused of pocketing millions of euros in defense deals and covering the money trail through property purchases. Another 18 people, including the ex-defense minister’s wife, have also been charged and prosecutors have called for all but two to be convicted.

“Those opportunists didn’t consider the law against money laundering waiting for them around the corner,” remarked another prosecutor, Dionysis Kolovos. Tsochatzopoulos reacted angrily when the latter mentioned him by name, retorting, “You should say minister; we’re not buddies.”

The trial is to resume next week with a summing up by defense lawyers.

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