NEWS

Bourboulia is on her way back

After six hearings, a judge in Paris finally decided yesterday that former judge Constantina Bourboulia, wanted in Greece in connection to alleged trial-fixing, should be sent back for questioning. Bourboulia has until Monday to appeal the decision, which arrived after she put up a strong legal fight to delay her return to Greece. If she does not appeal, France has to extradite her within 10 days. Greek authorities want to speak to her regarding an alleged trial-fixing ring and stock market manipulation. The former judge asked that her return to Greece take place away from the glare of publicity. She had previously claimed to have received a death threat. «I would like you to assure me that my return will be totally safe and secret,» Bourboulia told the judge. «I would like the lawyer representing the Greek State to guarantee that journalists will not be present when I arrive in Greece.» The judge told Bourboulia that her privacy could only be guaranteed within French borders. Responding to Bourboulia’s concerns, Supreme Court prosecutor Dimitris Linos said that she had nothing to worry about. »Greece is a democratic, organized country which respects laws,» Linos said. «It goes without saying that it guarantees the safety of citizens and protects their rights.» Bourboulia was arrested in Paris after spending four months on the run from Greek authorities who obtained the right to probe her Swiss bank accounts last month. She was given a suspended jail sentence last June after being found guilty of mishandling a probe into stock manipulation. She has also been charged with abuse of power, money laundering and accepting bribes in connection with the alleged trial-fixing ring.