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Proton Bank Suspect Fled As Priest

Former Proton Bank principal Petros Kyriakides
Former Proton Bank principal Petros Kyriakides

Petros Kyriakides, one of the principals wanted in connection with corruption that forced the government to take over the Proton Bank, fled Greece dressed as a priest and was accompanied by two men dressed as clergy, the newspaper To Vima reported on March 10.
The report said they boarded a private jet and headed to Jerusalem a day after the apprehension of the bank’s main shareholder, Lavrentis Lavrentiadis on Dec. 13, 2012, who was arrested immediately. A warrant for Kyriakides was not issued until the next day, giving him time to flee.
Kyriakides was being sought in connection to his involvement in the alleged issuing by Proton Bank of some 700 million euros in bad loans, some $910 million.
En route to Jerusalem, the plane diverted and flew to Lichtenstein, where the newspaper said the Lavrentiadis group of companies had a private bank. Kyriakides was believed to have as much as 80 million euros ($104 million) in his possession, an amount he would have to declare had he tried to take a commercial flight as well as risk being caught.
The newspaper, citing unnamed legal sources, said that Kyriakides is living in either Uruguay or Paraguay in South America while Lavrentiadis remains in jail on a series of money-laundering and embezzlement charges, all of which he has denied.
Shortly after Christmas, it became known that another arrest warrant, this one for Kyriakides’ lawyer Eleni Skoura, can’t be executed who the newspaper said met with him in South America, along with her husband. She is also facing charges of participating in the theft from the bank of 100 million euros, some $130 million.

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