ND chief: Next gov’t will probe Novartis claims

ND chief: Next gov’t will probe Novartis claims

The allegations by a deputy Supreme Court prosecutor that a government official influenced an investigation into an alleged bribery scandal involving the Swiss drugs manufacturer Novartis will be investigated by the next Parliament, conservative New Democracy leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis said Thursday.

Ioannis Angelis referred to a government official who is active in the judicial sector whom he identified only as “Rasputin.” He alleged that the probe into the possible implication of political officials into the Novartis affair has been marred by a series of irregularities, while making allegations of a campaign by the government to victimize political rivals.

Angelis is to be summoned next Friday by another Supreme Court deputy prosecutor, Dimitris Dasoulas, who has been appointed by the court’s main prosecutor Xeni Dimitriou to probe his claims. After Angelis’ testimony, Dasoulas is to summon corruption prosecutor Eleni Touloupaki, who has accused Angelis of a range of alleged offenses, including taking one of her memory sticks.

In an interview aired on Open TV Thursday, Mitsotakis said it was “very clear” that the government had influenced the course of the Novartis probe and that Angelis’ accusations were “very serious and obviously… must be investigated.” “To the degree that they concern ministers it is a given that this case will reach the next Parliament,” he said. Questioned about the identity of “Rasputin,” Mitsotakis said it was clear.

“We all know who Rasputin is. Tsipras knows. There are two ministers at the Justice Ministry. Draw your own conclusions,” he said, referring to Premier Alexis Tsipras, who in an interview on Alpha TV on Wednesday said he had no idea who it might be.

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