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Athens: Arsonists target cars of former Greek Minister Papantoniou

Two private cars belonging to former finance and defence minister Yiannos Papantoniou became the target of arsonists in the early morning hours of Friday. According to Greek media, shortly after 3:30 a.m. devices consisting of gas canisters exploded, destroying completely the two cars and causing some damages to Papantoniou’s residence.

 more pictures here

The cars were parked outside ex ministers’ home in Kifissia suburb of northern Athens.

Police rushed to the spot gatherining information that can lead to trace the perpetrators.

No organisation has claimed so far responsibility for the arson.

Yiannos Papantoniou

Yiannos Papantoniou has been in the focus of Greek press lately as the name of his wife has been among the names of 2,059 Greeks with bank deposits at HSBC, Geneva branch, contained in the infamous Lagarde list. The ex minister categorically had denied claims by two Greek newspapers (Proto Thema and Real News) that he had transferred several million euros through his wife’s bank account.

Greek prosecutors are investigating defense contracts worth 7 billion euros ($9 billion) and 85 other state deals in an effort to root out possible fraud, the newspaper Kathimerini reported. The defense procurement deals were approved in 2001 by former defense minister Yiannos Papantoniou, who succeeded fellow PASOK member Akis Tsochatzopoulos as Greece’s defense minister in 2001. Tsochatzopoulos is in jail awaiting a trial on charges of money-laundering involving other defense contracts during his tenure.

 The programs that are under scrutiny include the purchase of 12 Apache helicopters from Boeing, the procurement of Leopard tanks from Germany, a contract for Type 209 submarines and the upgrading of six frigates.

The authorities have already requested access to bank accounts held by Papantoniou and members of his immediate family, Kathimerini reported. (GreekReporter)

Yiannos Papantoniou (PASOK) served as Minister of Economy and Finance (1994-2001) and Minister of National Defense (2001-2003). He is no longer member of the Parliament.



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