Vato­pedi land swap trial in last stretch

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

The crim­i­nal trial re­lat­ing to the in­fa­mous prop­erty swap be­tween the Vato­pedi Monastery and the Greek state en­tered its fi­nal phase yes­ter­day when two of the pro­tag­o­nists in the ex­change, Ab­bot Ephraim and monk Arse­nios, ap­peared in court in Athens.

Both deny any wrong­do­ing over the ex­change, which took place al­most a decade ago and is al­leged to have cost tax­pay­ers mil­lions. Ephraim in­sisted that it was the con­ser­va­tive govern­ment at the time that pro­posed the ex­change, which in­volved the monastery hand­ing over land around Lake Vis­tonida in re­turn for real es­tate that was con­sid­ered of higher value.

The trial is due to re­sume on De­cem­ber 15.

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