Attorney-general Costas Clerides on Tuesday rejected claims by MPs that authorities were dragging their feet in investigating the circumstances leading up to last year’s collapse of the financial sector.
In a terse statement, Clerides hit back at certain MPs who a day earlier accused the Attorney-general of taking too long to prosecute.
He was referring to members of the House ethics committee, which is putting together its own inquiry into the financial meltdown of 2013.
“Attempts by some to discredit independent institutions such as the Attorney-general’s office and the justice system are disheartening and unacceptable,” Clerides said.
Evidently alluding to politicians, the top lawman went on to accuse them of misinforming the public. The criminal probe into the economy, he said, only began in August 2013 – not a year ago as some claimed.
Clerides said the task of gathering and analysing actionable information was “daunting both in terms of sheer volume and complexity,” but promised that his office would soon present findings.
The criminal investigation covers the period 2006 through to March 2013.
Taking a dig at MPs, Clerides added: “If some believe, or wish to cause people to believe, that by merely handing to authorities documents related to a certain malfeasance, that this is sufficient to take someone to court, this betrays a complete ignorance of how institutions and procedures work, and serves nothing but to stoke people’s impatience and their already shattered confidence in institutions.”
It’s understood Clerides was referring to a list – drawn up by the House ethics committee – of persons who allegedly transferred funds abroad ahead of the Eurogroup meetings of March 2013.