Probe into judge’s decision not to hear major drug case

Probe into judge’s decision not to hear major drug case

Supreme Court prosecutor Efterpi Koutzamani on Friday ordered a probe into the withdrawal of a judge slated to hear a case pertaining to the seizure of 2 tons of heroin in the summer of 2014.

A few days before the trial of 35 suspects, including a prominent businessman and former soccer baron, was due to start at Piraeus Court, the judge said she wouldn’t be able to hear the case, citing health reasons. Her withdrawal spurred a flurry of speculation in the media, particularly as to whether she may have been coerced, prompting Koutzamani to order an investigation.

“Negative comments are being made about the justice system that undermine its stature,” she said.

The speculation was further fueled by the alleged transfer to different services of three port authority guards who were part of the team which inspected the Noor 1 cargo ship that is believed to have brought the drugs to Greece from Dubai and the Persian Gulf.

The shipment was discovered in two different batches, in a villa in the upscale Athenian suburb of Filothei and a storage shed in Koropi, eastern Attica.

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