Match-fixing suspects in court
Two suspects accused of being part of a large soccer match-fixing ring were remanded in custody after appearing before a magistrate yesterday, while another five were bailed pending trial.
The owner of second-division Ilioupoli, Giorgos Tsakoyiannis, and the owner of a China-based illegal betting agency, Vassilis Karakoulias, were remanded in custody after appearing in court. Tsakoyiannis denied being a member of any gang and said that he was never involved with betting on soccer matches. He said he was only implicated in the affair because he was acquainted with some of the other suspects. A total of 83 suspects have been charged so far.
Karakoulias said that he did not know any of the other suspects and that none of the 450 betting slips found at his home had anything to do with fixed matches.
Stavros Psomiadis, the son of the owner of Super League side Kavala, Pavlos Psomiadis, was bailed after denying any involvement in the alleged ring. Psomiadis, 26, was asked to post bail of 800,000 euros. Makis Psomiadis is also among the named suspects but did not appear in court yesterday as he is still at large. His lawyer said that he would hand himself in to police this week. Authorities are seeking another three suspects who have been charged with being at the heart of the alleged ring.
Achilleas Beos, the president of Super League club Olympiakos Volou, who is also alleged to have been a key figure in the ring, was due to appear in court late last night.
Bookmaker Andreas Dimopoulos, players’ agent Athanasios Dotsis, former soccer player Dimitris Zavantias and coach Nikos Pantelis were also released on bail. All the suspects have been barred from leaving the country.
Meanwhile, Supreme Court prosecutor Yiannis Tentes accepted the resignation of Anastasios Kanellopoulos, a deputy prosecutor at the country’s top court, after his brother, Thanasis, was implicated in the ring. Thanasis Kanellopoulos had served as vice president of the Hellenic Football Federation (EPO) and was a representative for Olympiakos Volou on the Super League board. Anastasios Kanellopoulos was responsible for overseeing the work of prosecutors that had been assigned to cover sports-related issues.