Minister digs at judges over defense kickbacks

Minister digs at judges over defense kickbacks

In the latest in a series of jabs at the judiciary by the leftist-led government, Alternate Justice Minister Dimitris Papangelopoulos on Wednesday suggested that judges and prosecutors were basically complicit in covering up a “deluge” of kickbacks from state defense contracts under previous administrations.

“There was a period when defense kickbacks were raining down, or rather coming down like a tropical storm or a deluge,” he told Parliament on Wednesday during a discussion of the findings of a House committee probe into defense contracts.

“The unfortunate thing is that… certain prosecutors and judges acted as if they didn’t realize what was happening,” he said.

“Apart from being blind, justice also put in earplugs,” he said, adding that he was inclined to believe that they were “inadequate” or came under pressure from their superiors rather than any malevolent intentions.

Former Socialist defense minister Akis Tsochatzopoulos and other defense officials who were convicted for laundering kickbacks “were thrown into the flames of what was essentially a restricted catharsis,” the minister added.

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