January 9, 2014

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BUSTED - Arrest Warrants Against Greek Banksters, Entrepreneurs In Hellenic Postbank Scandal

At least ten arrest warrants were issued by Greek public prosecutors against entrepreneurs, as well as former heads of the Hellenic Postbank (TT),  on charges of corruption relating to fraud and money laundering. The loans were apparently granted by the Hellenic Postbank in the period 2006-2011, and according to initial reports losses almost HALF A BILLION EUROS or at least 400 million Euros.

Press reports in Athens claim that the case, which is being handled by examining judge Giorgos Andreadis, is based on evidence by the Money Laundering Authority, as well as from a prosecutors' investigation.

The names include the owner of Alpha TV, Dimitris Kondominas, who was reportedly being treated in a hospital for an illness (although reports claim that he wasn’t involved in problem loans but that the problem related to a credit card issued by the bank to his company). Kondominas was immediately arrested and is presently under guard by four policemen in an Athens Medical Centre where he is supposedly being treated for health issues.

Warrants were also issued against the former deputy managing director Mr. Marios Varotsis and even two former governors of the bank - Mr. Angelo Fillipidis and Kleon Papadopoulos. Reports in Athens claimed that Fillipidis had escaped to the US, but he made an appearance on a televised news show on ANT1 on Thursday morning noting that he was out of the country on business, but would return right away in order to clear his name.

On Thursday it was reported that Vorotsis and (another bank executive) Charalambos Giangoudis, were also arrested.

Also, a warrant was issued against Mr. Griveas and his wife Anastasia Vatsa (who are extremely good friends of the Papandreou family and specifically Nikos Papandreou).

Also, an arrest warrant was issued against the Cypriot Greek shipowner Mr. X. Siganos.

The investigation follows a report by the Bank of Greece that cites a plethora of very bad loans which were branded non-performing. Greece's Anti-Money Laundering Office has already frozen the assets of the accused in order for the State to be able to reclaim at least a part of this capital.

The probe states that there is clear evidence of guilt on the part of those accused in this scandal. (Charges include  direct complicity in acts of infidelity, and money laundering).

The Bank of Greece has concluded that those implicated in this case were receiving loans without sufficient (and proper) collateral.

One typical cases relates to a loan of approximately 30 million Euros by a well known businessman. Another instance involves a trader and his wife who received loans amounting to 20,000,000 Euros. Reports also point to two bond contracts which TT concluded on March 23rd and August 12th, 2009, for amounts of EUR 7,000,000 and 10,000,000 respectively, by a well known businessman and his wife for their privately owned company.

Aside from the loans of 17 million Euros, which, according to the same press reports have now been characterized as being "noncollectable",  the Hellenic Postbank also suspiciously channelled funds to three other companies by the same businessmen totaling 2,385,000 Euros twice!. The total amount of damage from only these two loans is estimated to be at least 20 million Euros.

It should be reminded that the Hellenic Financial Stability Fund channelled at least 4.5 billion Euros in the Hellenic Postbank having wound down and re-launched the bank, before selling it to Eurobank. The Hellenic Financial Stability Fund was effectively selling Postbank to itself as it owns not only 100% of Postbank but also 93.6% of Eurobank.

The TT Bank had assets of 13.7 billion Euros, deposits of 10.7 billion and a network of approximately 200 branches.

The probe into suspect loans issued by previous management of the Postbank is a move that breaks with bad practices of the Greece’s banking sector which saw several banks collapse and later bailed out by public money.

Greece’s lenders have invested more than 40 billion Euros to shore up the Greek banking system and have reportedly pressured the Greek government to clean up the corruption which is seen as the root of this country’s economic troubles.

One example of this corruption is that of Proton Bank which was bailed out by the Greek government (under George Papandreou), at a cost of 1.3 billion Euros. Proton was split into “good” and “bad” parts and is now fully owned by Greece’s bank rescue fund, the Hellenic Financial Stability Fund. Proton was taken over when it became insolvent after it was found to have more than 700 million Euros and a scandal involving its chief shareholder, Lavrentis Lavrentiadis.

(Editor's Note - Notice how the Papandreou family is once again implicated in this case? Maybe the Greek justice system should begin listening to Panos Kammenos who from the beginning has accused Papandreou's family of nasty business with the TT Bank. Remember the case of the CDS? Go to search and type in Papandreou and then CDS... trust us... it is a good read! We also think that Theodore Pangalos should change his famous line: "we ate it all together" to "PASOK ate it all", because as more and more scandals begin being exposed we discover that this wannabe socialist party -with capitalistic pockets- is implicated in almost everything! Anyone with half a brain would automatically assume that this party operated more as a criminal organization and/or as a mafia, rather than a government. But then again... what do we know... we are just a small blog... ho hum...)



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