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Large bank and Co-op loans probe

loan investigationINVESTIGATORS, looking into the near economic collapse of Cyprus, are scrutinising the terms and provisions of loans given to members or their relatives of the Boards of Directors of Cooperative institutions and Banks to ascertain whether anybody is accountable for the dire economic situation the country is facing, Deputy Attorney General Rikkos Erotokritou said on Tuesday.

Replying to a question on the cooperative sector’s loans, Attorney General Costas Clerides said that authorities have asked to receive relevant documents and data on loans by the Cooperative Central Bank and that in their majority these have been communicated to the Law Office of the Republic.

Banks have also given relevant documents and data, he said, adding that there are no longer any delays on the part of banks to hand over documents.

On his part and replying to journalists’ questions on the matter, Erotokritou said loans given to the Bank of Cyprus or to the former Cyprus Popular Bank and to the Board of Directors of the Cooperative institutions, in addition to large loans given to individuals or companies, are under investigation as part of the probe into the near collapse of the economy.

The cases are being processed as fast as possible, he said, adding that investigators are in touch with the Law Office and investigative work is expedited.

Asked what message he would like to convey to the people, Erotokritou said that investigations will go ahead smoothly, pledging that no-one will escape investigation if that is called for.

As regards the loans, he explained that no incriminating evidence has been found but there are indications that the matter should be investigated further.

Replying to a question as to the number of loans involved, he pointed out that it is a large but manageable number as it does not concern many hundreds or thousands of loans.

“It will take some time but we can deal with it,” he said.

Source: Cyprus News Agency