ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Greek judicial authorities on Friday ordered 19 people, including a former defense minister and his immediate family, to stand trial on money laundering charges related to alleged corruption in defense contracts.
The judicial council set a trial date of April 22 for former minister Akis Tsochadzopoulos, his wife, daughter, ex-wife, a cousin and former business associates. Tsochadzopoulos, a prominent figure in past Socialist governments, was sentenced earlier this week to eight years imprisonment for submitting false income declarations. He, his wife and daughter and another five of the suspects have been in pre-trial detention for nearly a year. He denies all charges.
Judicial authorities have been given broader powers to investigate corruption since Greece was hit by a severe financial crisis that has left the country mired in a deep recession.