ATHENS – The man who was charged with investigating financial crimes in Greece will be tried for breach of faith over his handling of a list of Greeks with secret Swiss bank accounts.
Yiannis Diotis headed the financial crimes squad SDOE and had been known for helping break up the notorious November 17 terrorist group.
He’s being charged in connection with the so-called Lagarde List of 2,062 Greeks with 1.5 billion euros in the Geneva branch of HSBC that is being probed for tax cheats.
The list is named for former French finance minister Christine Lagarde, now head of one of Greece’s international lenders, the International Monetary Fund.
In 2010, she provided the names from a larger list of a CD stolen from the bank by a former employee. It was being used by other countries to go after tax evaders and was given to then Greek finance chief George Papaconstantinou who is also facing trial after the names of three of his cousins was found to have been erased.
The list was also given to Papaconstantinou’s successor, current PASOK Socialist leader Evangelos Venizelos, who is serving as Deputy Premier/Foreign Minister in the coalition government headed by Prime Minister and New Democracy Conservative leader Antonis Samaras, but not being charged for failing to chase alleged tax cheats.
Unlike Papaconstantinou, Diotis will not face the additional charge of tampering with an official document. Diotis’s predecessor, Yiannis Kapeleris, was cleared of any charges over the list.