Ex-soccer club owner Makis Psomiadis denies match-fixing

Former soccer club owner Makis Psomiadis on Wednesday denied being involved in a match-fixing ring.

During questioning at the Athens Criminal Appeals Court, he claimed he had been embroiled in the judicial case by people who wanted to harm him.

Psomiadis, who owned Kavala soccer club, also denied that his son, Stavros, who was the club’s chairman, had conspired to form a criminal organization. He suggested the 29-year-old was more suited to “bumper cars at the fairground.”

Psomiadis also played down his flight to the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) when authorities were searching for him last year.

“I was given advice by the wrong person,” said Psomiadis. “I only went 20 minutes from Thessaloniki. Skopje is a suburb of Kilkis.”

Psomiadis and his son are two of 11 charged with forming a criminal gang to fix the outcome of soccer games in Greece between 2008 and 2011 in order to win bets.

They are alleged to be part of a wider match-fixing network.

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