Bond probe to deepen

The probe into the purchase of an overpriced bond by four pension funds is set to intensify after the head of a prosecutor’s office recommended that an investigating judge be appointed to examine the case due to the serious nature of the alleged offenses. Prosecutor Antonis Liogas began this week questioning some 25 suspects linked to the case but the head of the appeals prosecutors office, Giorgos Koliocostas, indicated yesterday that the evidence gathered so far required the process to take on a more urgent nature. Koliocostas wrote to the central appeals court office suggesting that a plenary session of appeals judges be convened to decide whether an investigating justice should be appointed to the case once suspects are charged toward the end of June. Investigating judges have been appointed in the past to look into high-profile cases, such as the recent trial-fixing ring and the capture of the November 17 terrorist group. Koliocostas said that there is enough evidence already to suggest that suspects will be charged with a number of serious offenses, such as fraud, money laundering, forming a criminal gang and tax evasion. Sources said that following Koliocostas’s letter, it is likely that the appeals judges will meet within the next 15 days to decide on his request. In the first day of testimony on Monday, Agapios Simeoforidis, the ex-president of the Civil Servants’ Auxiliary Pension Fund (TEADY), allegedly told prosecutor Antonis Liogas that the Acropolis brokerage misled TEADY when it recommended investing in the 280-million-euro bond. Representatives of Acropolis are due to testify on Monday. The heads of the other three funds that bought into the bond are due to face questioning later this week. Government spokesman Theodoros Roussopoulos rejected claims that pension fund boards were politically biased in the decision making. «I would like to think there are no political motives behind the decisions made by board members,» he said. Roussopoulos also pointed to a draft law the government is preparing to safeguard pension fund investments.

Subscribe to our Newsletters

Enter your information below to receive our weekly newsletters with the latest insights, opinion pieces and current events straight to your inbox.

By signing up you are agreeing to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.