The testimony of the alleged middleman in the case of the abortive Greek sale of munitions to Saudi Arabia, Vasilis Papadopoulos, has been sent to parliament and was incorporated in the case file on the affair.
The document containing the businessman’s deposition is only one-and-a-half pages long, even though judicial reporters noted that he was speaking for over three hours.
Upon his initial summons from a prosecutor, Papadopoulos failed to appear, so the file was transmitted to parliament without his testimony.
Under Greek law, if the name of a politician shows up in an investigation – in this case Defence Minister Panos Kammenos – then the case file must be sent to parliament, which decides whether to prosecute or to send the case back to the judiciary.
Sources say that Papadopoulos did not deny that the General Directorate for Defence Investments and Armaments of the defence ministry at first harboured reservations during negotiations regarding his power of attorney from the Saudis.
He said that even though he submitted the certificates of final user for 300,000 projectiles, the General Directorate for Defence Investments and Armaments was disputing that authorisation.
As for Kammenos, Papadopoulos said he met him once at the ministry at the start of 2016, in the presence of Admiral Evangelos Apostolakis, who is currently Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Even as the negotiations continued, with the General Directorate for Defence Equipment challenging his authorisation, Papadopoulos said in his deposition that in August, 2017, he received a telephone call from an officer at the general directorate who told him that a delegation from Saudi Arabia wanted to inspect the materiel, and that he told them he had already conducted an inspection.
He complained that the aforementioned officer in his discussions with the transporter of the materiel spoke of 100,000 projectiles and not 300,000. Papadopoulos said he informeδ the defence minister about this by SMS.