A court in Katerini, near Thessaloniki, gave a 12-month suspended jail sentence to an ophthalmologist on Friday after he was found guilty of accepting a 300-euro bribe in order to speed up a patient’s operation.

The 51-year-old doctor, who is the head of the ophthalmology department at Katerini Hospital, was arrested after the son of the 66-year-old patient notified police.

Officers caught the suspect just after he had accepted the cash in marked banknotes.

The doctor insisted that the money had been a gift, not a bribe.