The passive bribery charges filed against former defence minister Akis Tsohatzopoulos should be dropped because they fall under the statute of limitations, Supreme Court Judicial Council examining judge Vassilis Lambropoulos on Thursday underlined, adding that the former PASOK minister can be tried for money-laundering in regular courts and not before a tribunal.
Lambropoulos came to the conclusion that the offence of passive bribery (accepting bribes) falls under the statute of limitations pursuant to the minister’s liability law considering that it was committed two parliamentary sessions ago.
The judicial council will issue a definitive ruling after considering the recommendations that will be presented by its prosecutor Nikolaos Mavros.
For the record, parliament has voted in favour of Tsohatzopoulos being tried for passive bribery and money-laundering. The decision was based on the findings of a preliminary examination committee that investigated the German submarine case, focusing on whether Tsohatzopoulos had received kickbacks in order to back a controversial contract for the purchase of four German submarines for the Hellenic Navy while he was defence minister.