Late on Sunday a magistrate refused a second appeal by businessman Lavrentis Lavrentiadis to be released from pretrial custody and be placed under house arrest. Lavrentiadis, the main shareholder in Proton Bank, has been held in prison since December 14 after being accused of embezzling 700 million euros from the lender.

In his appeal, he claimed that the prison does not have the ability to deal with an 80 percent disability caused by rheumatoid arthritis.

He argued that being moved to a public or private hospital under guard would also leave him at risk of contracting hospital bugs.

Judge Ioanna Hatzaki, however, said that she would only approve a transfer to a hospital.