In 2015, a Greek prosecutor charged six officials at the country’s privatisation agency, three Greek nationals and three others appointed by the European Commission, with embezzlement for withholding interest payments and breach of duty in relation to a sale and lease-back deal of 28 state-owned buildings.
According to prosecutor, the Greek state suffered losses totaling €575,856,504.
The case referred to two auctions of state owned buildings The contracts were signed in May 2014 and the Greek state had to lease the properties back for twenty years in order to cover housing needs for public services.
Prosecutors also pointed out that in some cases, the “fair value of property” was underestimated , thus reducing the amount of money received by the state and that “the value of land was not considered as well as other factors of the real estate market.
The six denied the accusations, claiming that their role was merely advisory and not binding for the board of HRADF that had the final say.
The case is still pending
Under Greek law, any losses in excess of €150,000 will result in criminal proceedings.
He said: “If there is no solution for these gentlemen, the Eurogroup will block the payment.”
Mr Guindos added that the decision to block would most likely be supported by other Eurogroup members, insisting: “It was a decision of the Eurogroup. If these people are not cleared, the payment will not occur.”
A Greek government source quoted by the AFP new agency said: “We will find a solution on time, we will do everything possible within the limits of the rule of law and respect for judicial authorities.”
He said: ”The problem has to be solved. We should not over dramatise it. The disbursement will happen and at the same time will find a solution to this problem.”