A former executive of toy retailer Jumbo rejected on Friday allegations his real estate company conducted irregular property sales with Chinese investors, saying the use of its POS to process the transactions was fully in line with banking rules.
Evangelos Papaevangelou resigned on Wednesday after a news report claimed he had set up a real estate company, Destiny Investment, which allegedly sold property to Chinese nationals through the use of POS, circumventing capital controls in China.
The scheme also qualified those investors for Greece's Golden Visa program.
Papaevangelou said Destiny Investment requested and received legally POS from two Greek banks for transactions in Greece and China, with the aim of selling property.
“The procedure of buying and selling real estate is conducted in a perfectly legal manner and through interbank transactions from beginning to end…In other words, all transactions are conducted through banks and are transparent,” he said in a statement.
He said since those POS transactions were approved by the institutional systems of the cardholder and the device owner – the bank – the sale is legal.
“To launder money, you first need to have 'dirty' money, another crime must have preceded…In our case, Destiny Investment receives legal money through the banking system for legal operations,” he said.
Papaevangelou also argued that, after the property sale, his company had no involvement in the procedure of issuing Golden Visas.
The Supreme Court prosecutor on Wednesday ordered the Financial Prosecutor's Office to investigate the case.
The Bank of Greece and the European Central Bank are also conducting their own probe.