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Ex Defense Ministry official admitted bribes $16 million. Yes, he is Greek…

Former PM Papandreou may had been right, when he claimed in the pre-election period in September 2009 “there is money”. Stupidly enough the Greek voters believed there there was money in the state registers to be distributed to the people. However, obviously enough, the money was (and still is) in off-shore companies and bank accounts belonging to politicians and their middlemen… OK, the defense sector with its costly procurement seems to have been top in receiving bribes. So far, only PASOK ministers have been or are under investigation. Where they the only ones? Or should also ministers form other parties and other sectors should be investigated?

“Representatives of German and Russian companies paid bribes to Greek officials to secure defense contracts, an ex-Defense Minister official who was one of those to benefit personally from the deals told a judge on Wednesday.

Antonis Kantas, deputy head of procurements at the ministry between 1996 and 2002, is believed to have netted around 16 million dollars in bribes.

He admitted to Gavriil Mallis, a magistrate who investigates corruption scandals, that he accepted the under-the-table payments and identified the businessmen who gave him the money.

During two days of testimony, which concluded on Wednesday with Kantas being remanded in custody, the ex-ministry official also described how the bribes paid in connection with seven procurement programs worked their way from foreign banks to lenders in Costa Rica, Panama and then Singapore.

Kantas did not identify any politicians that he believes to have taken bribes.

He served under Akis Tsochatzopoulos, who has been jailed for laundering the kickbacks he received, and, briefly, Yiannos Papantoniou. (ekathimerini)

PS if a ministry official gets 16 million USD in bribes, I wonder how much the ministers got…

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