Bishop let off: Panteleimon could make return

Date Published: 03/11/2009
Publication: Kathimerini

POKROV NOTE: Bezenitis is the former metropolitan of Attica. However, he remains a bishop.

The Church of Greece’s Holy Synod yesterday decided by seven votes to five not to force the jailed former bishop of Attica, Panteleimon, to face a Church court. As of 2006, Panteleimon has been serving a six-year jail sentence in Korydallos Prison for embezzlement. An internal report, compiled by Bishop Serapheim of Karystia after three years of research, suggested that Panteleimon should be tried on four counts: setting up an offshore company, having bank accounts with excessively large deposits, scandalizing the faithful and embezzling 195,000 euros from an Attica monastery. However, the Holy Synod’s decision means that the ex-bishop will not face further action and could be free to return to the Church upon his release from jail.