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Former Greek Defence Minister Arrested on Corruption Allegations

akis tsochatzopoulos arrest warrantFormer Greek Defence Minister Akis Tsochatzopoulos has been arrested on allegations of money laundering, according to Vima newspaper.

The once-powerful PASOK politician allegedly used offshore companies in order to receive 8 million euro in payoffs from the German company Ferrostaal.

He then used the money to buy properties in Kifisias avenue and in Komna Traka street, both in Athens. The politician was accused of taking bribes in connection with the purchase of four German submarines by the Hellenic Navy in the early 1990's.

The money, according to the indictment, was sent through Morgan Stanley in Switzerland.

His arrest warrant was approved by Athens Court Prosecutor Helen Rakou.

Tsochatzopoulos was a powerful figure in Greek politics, and had several ministerial posts in the Greek government. At one stage he was a candidate for prime minister.

The fresh scandal has hit news headlines a few weeks ahead of elections in Greece, expected in the first week of May. In 2011, the Hellenic Parliament voted to prosecute Tsochatzopoulos, who has been on conditional release since his indictment.

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