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article imageTurmoil in Greek parliament over 'Lagarde List'

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By Katerina Nikolas     Oct 3, 2012 in World
The Greek press has come up with a new moniker for the missing CD containing the names of 1,991 wealthy Greeks with funds stashed in a Swiss bank. The CD has been aptly named the "Lagarde list" as it was provided by IMF Head Christine Lagarde.
The "Lagarde List" is causing turmoil in the Greek Parliament To Vima reports, since it was handed over by PASOK leader Evangelis Venizelos on Tuesday.
According to Athens News, Nikos Pantelis, Supreme Court financial crimes deputy prosecutor, has requested detailed information on another "reputed list containing the names of 36 former ministers and current and former MPs allegedly being investigated by SDOE for suspicious acquisition of wealth."
PASOK has received its first casualty from the Lagarde List with the resignation of former Transport Minister Yiannis Ragousis. Athens News reported Ragousis announced his resignation, stating:
“As a government member who was repeatedly presented with faits accompli and was obliged to approve salary and pension cuts in order for Greece to remain on its feet, I consider all that has been confirmed through the infamous ‘Lagarde List’ as politically immoral and grossly unfair to society.”
Ekathimerini reported Ragousis said the existence of the "Lagarde List" underlined the "decisiviness or not to battle tax evasion with the same severity used to reduce incomes and impose new tax hikes."
Opposition parties have criticized former Finance Minister Evangelis Venizelos and former Finance Minister Giorgos Papaconstantinou for not informing the Committee on Institutions and Transparency of Parliament about the tax evasion information contained on the missing CD.
Venizelos had been given the list in August 2011 but failed to act on it believing it was illegal to do so. Other countries which received the list of 24,000 names forwarded their own nationals names to the relevant tax authorites, while Greek officials juggled the list until it disappeared.
According to Ta Nea use of the illegally obtained data brought Spain six billion euros, Italy € 570 million, while 4,000 French voluntarily settled their taxes pending investigation by the authorities.
Meanwhile Venizelos's political future may be uncertain as further investigations into the "Lagarde List" transpire.
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More about Evangelos Venizelos, Christine Lagarde, Lagarde List, Yiannis Ragousis
 

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