Another protracted and high-profile judicial investigation of alleged wrongdoing in a previous Greek government has been shelved, according to sources close to a probe by an anti-money laundering watchdog. The specific case involved allegations against former prime minister Costas Simitis, his immediate family and one-time government officials at the public order ministry.
The independent authority has requested the opening of all bank accounts belonging to the former Greek prime minister (in office from 1996 to 2004), two former ministers, Michalis Chrysohoidis and Evangelos Malesios, as well as members of their families.
The initial probe and subsequent bank account audits emanated from press reports, more than a decade ago, citing the deposition of ex-Thales Engineering head Michel Josserand in 2006.
Josserand claimed the French company bribed officials to win a contract for the upgrade of Greek Navy frigates, while also claiming that US-based SAIC approached Simitis and Chrysochoidis to win a C4I contract ahead of the 2004 Athens Olympic Games.
Josserand was later found guilty of libel by a French court after he was sued by Yannos Papantoniou, Greece’s defense minister before the 2004 Games.