NEWS

Probe launched into Olympic security deal

An Athens prosecutor yesterday launched a probe into Greece’s purchase of a high-tech surveillance and communications system that provided the backbone of the 1.2-billion-euro security operation mounted in view of the 2004 Olympics. The move by Dimitris Papangelopoulos, head of the Athens Court of First Instance prosecutors’ department, followed a report in the Avriani daily which alleged that the tender for the 252-million-euro system, known by its C4I acronym, was illegally awarded to a consortium led by US Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC). The paper also claimed that the system, which was initially meant to be ready in May 2004, has still to be officially taken delivery of by the Public Order Ministry, as it meets just 60 percent of the specifications laid out in the 2003 purchase contract.