Greek intel service suspects army chief of buying home with 'black money,' claims local media
Gen. Konstantinos Floros under extensive surveillance by country's intelligence service, according to daily Documento.
The head of the Greek army allegedly used illicit funds to buy a house in the country's capital Athens, according to local media reports on Monday.
The National Intelligence Service (EYP) found that Chief of General Staff Gen. Konstantinos Floros allegedly paid just €600,000 ($650,000) in "black" money for the luxury penthouse with a market value of €1.2 million in 2021, the daily Documento alleged in its continued coverage of a surveillance scandal that erupted last summer and has shaken the country's political scene.
While the newspaper found that property appeared to have been purchased not in Floros' name, but in his son in law's, it said that the EYP suspected him of securing illegal funds without providing evidence for the allegation.
"The very fact of monitoring the chief of staff, with an object of interest not for any security reason but to gather information about his life," alone caused concern about the functioning of democracy, the daily stressed.
It also claimed that the government blackmailed Floros over his "dark financial transactions."
The ever-expanding scandal exploded in Greece last summer, when Thanasis Koukakis, a well-known financial journalist in Greece, reported that his cell phone had been tapped with Israeli-made Predator spyware.
Things escalated after Nikos Androulakis, leader of the PASOK-KINAL opposition party and a member of the European Parliament, also revealed that he was targeted with Predator spyware, triggering a parliamentary probe on the matter.
On Aug. 4, Panagiotis Kontoleon, who then headed the EYP, admitted before a committee of lawmakers that the agency was spying on Koukakis.
Days later, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis disclosed that Androulakis was also wiretapped but denied any knowledge of the operation.
Mitsotakis was left with no option but to force Kontoleon to resign, as well as his top aide and nephew Grigoris Dimitriadis.
On Nov. 6, Documento published a list of 33 people who were allegedly spied on by the EYP on Dimitriadis' direct orders.
They included Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias, Deputy Defense Minister Nikolaos Chardalias, Development Minister Adonis Georgiadis, Labor Minister Kostis Hatzidakis, Finance Minister Christos Staikouras, former Prime Minister Antonis Samaras, former Public Order Minister Michalis Chrysochoidis and former National Security Adviser Alexandros Diakopoulos.
A later report by the daily claimed that the EYP, which works directly under Mitsotakis, also wiretapped Chief of General Staff Konstantinos Floros, Chief of Land Forces Charalambos Lalousis and General Director of Defense Investments and Armaments Theodoros Lagios.
Opposition parties blame Mitsotakis for the scandal and have called for his government to hold snap elections, a measure he rejects.
The European Commission and European Parliament have also said they were closely monitoring developments related to the scandal.