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SDOE investigates agents involved in possible match-fixing scandal in soccer

The Financial Crimes Squad (SDOE) has discovered a suspiciously large amount of money in the bank accounts of at least two soccer agents in a case implicating many well-known players and officials, both Greek and foreign, as well as certain companies abroad. Reports in the media on Wednesday suggested that a Thessaloniki-based agent, identified only by his initials, A.T., has had 26 million euros deposited into his account by players, managers and referees. Deposits include 3 million euros from a British betting company and 5 million euros from the island of Corfu, without further details being made known yet. There is also a second agent, based in Athens, who is under investigation. SDOE’s head Yiannis Kapeleris confirmed the reports, saying: «We are investigating many financial transactions, whether they are open or under the table. We are looking into the origin of the fortunes of club officials and others in soccer.» «There certainly are names of players, Greeks and foreign, being investigated, and major clubs,» he added. «We must wait for the investigation to finish and then we will be able to say much more.» Regarding the Thessaloniki-based agent, Kapeleris said: «His properties have been seized and the investigation is unfolding. There are some documents that are indeed impressive.» «It is not just up to us as to when we will get to the bottom of the case. There are foreign companies involved, possibly some offshore ones, too, but we will require a judicial contribution,» said Kapeleris. SDOE will deliver its conclusions to the state prosecutor’s office. Third-division club Panachaiki owner Alexis Kouyias, a well-known, controversial lawyer, was more outspoken about the case, suggesting on two radio stations that there is a «pyramid of rackets in Greek football.» When asked about the agents who are being investigated, he commented, «They are people without a job who do nothing else each day but fix games via their laptops to earn millions.»