Property Of Submarine Bribe-Collecting Former Greek Defense Minister Seized For Tax Evasion

Tyler Durden's picture

The following anecdote should probably explain why Germany is now ready to part ways with Greece, Lehman-like consequences be damned. As Kathimerini reports, former PASOK defense minister Akis Tsochatzopoulos has had one of his properties in central Athens seized, the same he is alleged not to have declared to avoid paying taxes. Yep - one of the top Greek political figures caught in tax evasion. And one thought such travesties only occur in the US. But wait there is more: this is the same defense minister whom the Greek Parliament voted in favor of indicting in connection with taking bribes for the purchase of submarines. As a reminder, "At least 120 million euros was paid in bribes by the German firm that struck a deal with the Greek government for the sale of four navy submarines, according to German court documents seen by Kathimerini....Two former executives of Ferrostaal, the Germany firm that was part of the consortium which won the contract, gave depositions in Munich concerning the kickbacks paid to secure the deal, which was worth just over 1.2 billion euros. According to court documents seen by Kathimerini, the first illicit payment of 32 million euros was made in May 2000. The money was deposited into a Swiss bank account but the two former Ferrostaal employees said they did not know who the recipient was. The executives said their main aim had been to win over a “top level” official in the Defense Ministry." Turns out it is the same guy who was concurrently engaging in tax evasion. And that is why Greece had a budget revenue miss of about the same amount as it paid Germany for its subs. It also explains why, as Germany will no longer receive payment for its subs, it no longer needs Greece as a mercantilist partner.

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lolmao500's picture

You know you are screwed when there's less corruption in Greece than in America.

knight99's picture

In Amerika its called one person (corporation) giving money to another person (dirty politician). Superpac bitches.

mc_LDN's picture

But corporations are humans too and we have "human rights" as well

JPM Hater001's picture

Um, yeah...I think Ive covered this one but to add color...

Anyone know what happens when a whole nation takes payments from the government but doesnt pay taxes? - complete fail


Burgess Shale's picture

If corporations are humans and/or citizens then why are they given special treatment by the IRS?  US citizens are required to pay US taxes on foreign income, even if the money doesn't come back to the US.  US corporations are not required to pay US taxes on foreign inclome unless the money is repatraited. 

swani's picture

Corporations give money to politicians, so they are deemed people when it comes to donating money,  something else when it comes to being charged criminally, and something else, when it comes to paying taxes.


Archduke's picture

all the corruption happens offshore, (swiss accounts in this case).

it happens in the US of course, but american politicians are much

too wise to repatriate their bribery kickbacks on domestic soil.

like Romney and Gingrich, they keep it securely in the carribean.


Zero Govt's picture

you know this goes on with every public contract

..from national to State Govt right down to town Councils

Stop Paying (All) Your Taxes

starve the suckers

swani's picture

The Americans have always been as corrupt as the everybody else, Americans are just better at marketing themselves and what they're doing. After all, it was Americans who perfected the art of calling paid mercenaries 'freedom fighters', anti war activists 'terrorists', corporate welfare recepients 'job creators', ext.  

GeneMarchbanks's picture

Dirty laundry time. Nice warm-up but I'm waiting for the Anglo version to begin.

Josh Randall's picture

Correct - the "Love American Style" version of the corrupt politico round-up will be starting once the govt checks stop coming -- so we still have time to go unfortunately. But we should all be taking notes by watching these other countries on how to sack a pig

Auburn's picture

And Greece needs four submarines for what purpose?????   Oh yeah - to stop the German U-boats coming in to repo half the country!

lolmao500's picture

To participate in WW3, of course.

Dr. Engali's picture

Would you trust a submarine made by a potential enemy? I sure wouldn't. Okay Fritz we'll design this sub so that when the time comes we can activate a system shut down while they are deep underwater.

Stuck on Zero's picture

Right you are.  The Greeks will sell the subs to Iran for three times what they are paying for them. 

agent default's picture

The submarines are also German.  But since Greece has no industrial output to speak of, how the fuck are they going to participate in any type of prolonged conflict is beyond me.

unrulian's picture

they make a wonderful salad dressing

youngman's picture

I think with the baltic Dry index so low...there are going to be a whole lot of new submarines........they won´t work very well...they will just sink....scuttled the insurance man

hunglow's picture

All boats are submarines.  They just haven't been tested yet.

agent default's picture

So  German companies were bribing Greek politicians to buy useless crap from German companies, and Germany is wondering how Greece got into this mess.  Interesting, they pretend they did not know what was happening in Greece for so long.

NoClueSneaker's picture

They don' give a fuck. German arm dealers r always bailed out by their own sheeple.

( Hermes Bürgschaften ). Export of german military hardware rose 120% in 6 years. German Bundestag hasn't seen the details since 2008.

Siemens, Rheinmetal or EADS  have a bunch of executives who'd like some greek island.

agent default's picture

True, but the game is becoming a bit too transparent.  I wouldn't want to be a German in Greece right now.  Certainly not in the coming months or years.

BudFox2012's picture

Now the real question is, when are they going to start seizing the assets of John Corzine of MF Global, and all the crooks at JP and GS? 

NoClueSneaker's picture

LOC * MART  can better ...

Bribing the all fuckin' NATO states, selling them JSF-Tamagochi which falls apart even without flying.


Bullish Sukhoi  :-)

unrulian's picture

I wonder who got paid off in canada's sub deal? those pieces of shit still aren't working several years later.

BobPaulson's picture

Good luck finding that out. The old "not waterproof wiring" in a submarine. Nice.

For what it is worth I would say the biggest threat to our sovereignty is Russian sub traffic under our icepack so I don't dispute the need compared to buying a bunch of overpriced fighters that can only be used to assist NATO bombing raids.

Catullus's picture

Even if they approve a new bailout, the Greek government officals are just going to steal it.  Germans, you've got to know when to cut these people off.

BobPaulson's picture

Same problem is in Chimerica. Junkie needs the junk, pusher need the money.

stock trout's picture

I learn something new every day on ZH. Today I learned that Greece actually has or will acquire FOUR submarines, and I learned that Germany manufactures submarines. Why Greece is in the market for subs and why Germany makes submarines is still beyond my comprehension.

NoClueSneaker's picture

... learn about a fact about nuclear proliferation. Germany produced 6 subs for Israel, custom made with the lounch ramps for strategic nuclear weapons. Two of them given away as a "present" .

  Oh wait, Israel doesn't have nukes. Wir sind fein raus .... alles wird gut ....


the misanthrope's picture

Is that a slight resemblance to Boris Karloff? Not just the voice of the grinch, but the whole thing.

Just start the "string them up with piano wire" , and we are going to need more piano wire.

BobPaulson's picture

Maybe it IS Boris Karloff. "Every Who down in Whoville liked Christmas a lot, but the Chancellor, who lived just north of Whoville - did not."

youngman's picture

You know it must be nice to be a Swiss banker.......the trillions are just pouring in...accounts being opened 24 hours a day....

Downtoolong's picture

120 million euros was paid in bribes by the German firm that struck a deal with the Greek government

It’s got to be a bit tougher refuting receipt of a bribe when the ones accusing you are the ones who paid the bribe.

“Wait Akis, it was me, remember.”

falak pema's picture

According to French Media, Greece will buy its revamp of Navy from France! A big contract has been imminent and it riled Merkel- Sarkozy entente over last months. Now we have the low down! Hanky panky, under hand panty snatching of Defense Minister! Sarkozy wants what Merkel doesn't get; that is true Euro zone harmony at ze topp!

Anybody for a tango in Brussels?  Maybe they also have Strauss waltzes on schedule, danced by Germany in backwardation and France in contango. What a team ! They do make a pair that Greeks can compare as French left hand shakes German right hand, and Greece shakes the other pair along with the lolly there. 

We still don't know if Greece buys German or French sub-Brolly for getting its left hand lolly.

connda's picture

So in the EU the elites occasionally throw one of their own under the bus.  I wonder what sort of kickback he get from that deal?

stickyfingers's picture

1981, P. Takis Veliotis, a former General Dynamics top executive at the Electric Boat division took off to Greece to avoid prosecution for allegedly taking $1.3 million in kickbacks. 

Maybe they know each other.
Chuck Walla's picture

Why do Greeks need submarines?  Olive oil storage?

Stuck on Zero's picture

If the submarines are made in Germany they're called "U-Boats." 

skistroni's picture

Add to the submarines:

  1. Tens of billions of contracts that Siemens got from the Greek government in the last 50 years, including Olympics, Athens Metro, (bankrupt) railways, and traffic lights. 
  2. Hochtieff owning the Athens Airport for 30 years (recently increased their share at firesale prices) and some of the Greek highway tolls for another 30 years with their joint ventures
  3. About 15-20 billion for BMWs, Mercedes's and Volkswagens that Greeks purchased on borrowed money thanks to the cheap rates that our entrance to the Eurozone gracefully provided (yes, this is the people's mistake, not the government's, but I would tend to think that the responsibility is shared)
  4. Deutsche Telecom buying the National Telecom Company for peanuts
  5. Hundreds of other smaller deals with German small and large companies as well as individuals

In short, they lent us money for us to buy their products or pay their companies for services in our own country, and thereby making their corporations and their banks richer. Now we actually have to pay them for the second time. 

Now the German elite are realising that they cannot extract any more blood from Greece, and they don't mind to let us go. It will not make a big difference in their yearly income statements. 

I'm afraid however that our own cast of clown politicians will NOT let go of the last opportunity to keep the fiat flowing from Europe and stay in their chairs for a few more months. 

Stuck on Zero's picture

The Japanese have been doing the same thing to the U.S. for years.  Who won World War II?

Canucklehead's picture

I'm trying to find the cheese mixed in with all your whine.

Are the Greeks a serious nation or simply a group of misfits that game everything... and cry when the dice they throw comes up snake eyes?

You are not making a case for foreign investment or any efforts to keep Greece from circling the rim as it goes down the drain.

The main reason Greece's GDP is heading down is the domestic market is transitioning into a bigger black market.

... Look, no taxes!


GMadScientist's picture

I always knew that Abe Vigoda was up to no good.

riphowardkatz's picture

Seems like the potential consequences of Germany letting Greek go would be far worse than Lehman. Even if they wouldn't be it seems like a case of the devil you know vs the devil you don't know.  My guess is they figure some secretive bail out coupled with a harsh crack down on wealthy Greeks. Maybe this is a harbinger of things to come for wealthy Greeks?

shortus cynicus's picture

There is an international anty-corruption agreement and Germany hasn't signed it. So German corporations (persons) can bribe anyone in a world practically without punishment, and then even legally use that information to blackmail the receiver.

That is how system works - standard industry practice. Nothing to see here, move along.


I_Am_'s picture

Hey! It's  only 10 percent........ Is that a lot?  Relatively speaking :-)


Miss Expectations's picture

The money was deposited into a Swiss bank account but the two former Ferrostaal employees said they did not know who the recipient was, however they were able to pick him out of a lineup which included Ian McDiarmid and Joseph Ratzinger.

Shylockracy's picture

"Mister Ten Percent", that masterpiece by the brainy German band Triumvirat, seems rather appropriate at this juncture...




A big Mercedes
a house on a hill
a week in Sweden
and we're paying the bill!

We paid your dinner
But not for long,
as we get thinner
taxis, hotels,
so on, and so on...





anonnn's picture

Review an earlier post:

From finanial discomfort to great comfort.

Once upon a time, there was a purchasing agent at a prosperous company.

He visited relatives in Italy, then drove over the border to open a private account at Credite Swisse. The arrangement included a coded identity and agreement that anyone could deposit funds into his account upon presenting a secret code and a secondary account number.

Anyone could deposit without knowing the actual private acount number; Withdrawals were possible only by s/o with the coded identity and actual account number.

Back home, our purchasing agent arranged for more than 1 vendor to enjoy both hugely profitable sales and make deposits at CreditSwisse.

Yearly, he travelled to Italy/Austria/France, crossed the border and checked status of his account. And smiled. And returned home.

He enjoyed his job. He was a loyal and trusted employee. He retired early.

Buddy, you'll never know how many Risk Managers, et al, play likewise...always with OtherPeoplesMoney which always is tied to his own income in mysterious ways rarely made known to others.

And the smart banker, always, puts bennies [benefits] into the back pocket of his large depositors. And always receives bennies from placing funds [loans of OPM] into enterprises very "friendly" to him.

The bank, itself, be damned, except as a conduit for his personal income. Exception is made only for a banker who actually owns the bank and its equity.