Ten charged for fix­ing, five sought

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

Ten peo­ple have been charged and an­other five are be­ing sought in con­nec­tion to an ex­ten­sive match­fix­ing ring in Greek soc­cer that is al­leged to have in­cluded two of the game’s most con­tro­ver­sial fig­ures, the pres­i­dent of Olympiakos Volou, Achil­leas Beos, and Kavala’s owner Makis Pso­mi­adis.

Po­lice re­leased yes­ter­day the names of the 10 men ar­rested on Wed­nes­day in con­nec­tion with 41 sus­pi­cious soc­cer games dur­ing the last three sea­sons.

The 10 men ar­rested are Beos, Pso­mi­adis’s son, Stavros, who is pres­i­dent of Kavala, the owner of sec­ond-divi­sion club Ilioupoli, Gior­gos Tsako­gian­nis, for­mer Ilioupoli pres­i­dent Nikos Chalkos, the coach of sec­ond-divi­sion side Eth­nikos Asteras, Nikos Pan­telis, for­mer player Dim­itris Za­van­dias, two book­mak­ers, An­dreas Di­mopou­los and Vas­silis Karak­ou­lias, player agent Thana­sis Dot­sis, and Nikos Za­ma­nis, who was iden­ti­fied as Beos’s body­guard.

A pros­e­cu­tor charged the sus­pects with form­ing a crim­i­nal or­ga­ni­za­tion, se­rial fraud, ag­gra­vated black­mail, money laun­der­ing, bribery to fix the re­sults of matches, il­le­gal bet­ting and il­le­gal own­er­ship of weapons. All 10 were re­manded in cus­tody un­til Mon­day, when they will be called to tes­tify.

Deputy Cit­i­zens’ Pro­tec­tion Min­is­ter Mano­lis Othonas con­nected the probe to Greece’s on­go­ing strug­gle to clamp down on corruption, a drive seen as sig­nif­i­cant in tack­ling the coun­try’s mam­moth debt cri­sis. “We are liv­ing in a new era in our coun­try, where pock­ets of law­less­ness and corruption that un­til re­cently were con­sid­ered no-go ar­eas or had high-level con­nec­tions and pro­tec­tion no longer en­joy in­for­mal im­mu­nity,” he said.

Po­lice, who were helped in their in­ves­ti­ga­tion by the Na­tional In­tel­li­gence Ser­vice (EYP), also have ar­rest war­rants for five other sus­pects in­clud­ing Pso­mi­adis and Hel­lenic Foot­ball Fed­er­a­tion of­fi­cial Yian­nis Pa­padopou­los.

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