Evidence points to Tsohatzopoulos' guilt, Parliament sources say

Sufficient evidence has arisen during a month-long Parliamentary inquiry to show that former defence minister Akis Tsohatzopoulos should be tried for criminal offences, sources in Parliament said on Friday.
A Parliamentary preliminary investigation committee, which has the role of an examining magistrate and the power to indict MPs and ministers to stand trial, was set up to investigate claims that Tsohatzopoulos received kickbacks in order to back a controversial contract for the purchase of four German submarines for the Greek Navy while he was defence minister.

The committee is due to present its report to Parliament President Philippos Petsalnikos next Tuesday.

Sources from the committee's majority say that ruling PASOK and main opposition New Democracy are now striving to submit a joint set of conclusions that will accuse the former minister of accepting bribes in order to act at the expense of the public interest and of legalising income from illegal activities.

Among suspect transactions linked to the former minister they pointed to purchases of real estate by the company TORCASO, which they said "bears the hallmarks of money-laundering". They pointed out, among others, that the representative of the offshore companies Torcaso and Nobilis in Greece was Tsohatzopoulos' accountant, Efrosyni Lambropoulou.

Based on an investigation conducted by MOKAS, the authority for the suppression of money-laundering on Cyprus, a cousin of Tsohatzopoulos named Nikolas Zigdas continues to be the owner of Medow, the company that succeeded Torcaso, to this day.

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