Former head of top defense ministry dept. handed 22-year sentence for bribery, money laundering

13 December 2018
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A former general secretary of the defense ministry’s one-time armaments directorate, which in the past oversaw major weapons systems procurements by the Greek state, was handed down a 22-year prison sentence on Wednesday by a three-justice appellate court.

Yiannis Sbokos was convicted of bribery and money laundering in a case involving the late 1990s purchase of the Russian anti-aircraft system Tor-M1. He was a close associate of then defense minister Akis Tsohatzopoulos, himself convicted on felony money laundering charges and currently serving a prison term.

Sbokos avoided a life sentence on the two felony convictions after the court recognized as he previous clean record and subsequent remorse as mitigating circumstances.

Another two defendants, the first a principle of an offshore firm (Clavis) allegedly used as the entity to receive the kickback, as well as a stock broker, were each handed down five-year prison sentences, – with three years suspended for the first and the second allowed to pay off his sentence at a “soft” rate of five euros per day.

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