Lagarde list update : Greek journalist Costas Vaxevanis cleared
Greek journalist Costas Vaxevanis was cleared on Thursday of breaching privacy laws for throwing a spotlight on super-rich tax-dodgers.
The verdict was greeted around the world as a victory for press freedom and Mr Vaxevanis said it allowed journalists “to do their jobs without handcuffs.”
He published a list of more than 2,000 names of people accused of doing their banking abroad to evade tax in the near-bankrupt country.
The list had previously allegedly been given to Greek authorities who had failed to act on it due to legal concerns as to the source of the names.
International Federation of Journalists president Jim Boumelha, who testified during the trial, said it was a “great victory” for Greek journalists.
Mr Boumelha, who also sits on the executive of the British National Union of Journalists, praised Greek unions for leading the fight against austerity and standing up for press freedom.
Costas Vaxevanis published a list of Greeks with Swiss bank accounts, including a government minister and other prominent figures in public life.
Lawyers for Mr Vaxevanis, 46, argued that the charges were outrageous and said no-one on the list had actually complained of a breach of privacy.
- Accused Greek journalist says rich “untouchable” – Reuters UK (uk.reuters.com)
- Regulating Press would bring Greek tragedy to Britain (sfluxe.com)
- Journalist Vaxevanis goes on trial over publishing of ‘Lagarde list’ (ekathimerini.com)