Nicolas Giannakopoulos got fired, said Swiss newspaper Le Temps, which also said the former deputy director of the University Security Observatory in Geneva (OUS) is being investigated for his role in a pro-1MDB seminar held in Geneva.
The focus of the enquiry is the origin of the funds he invested in a seminar on Malaysia’s scandal rigged 1MDB, which is considered the biggest financial scandal of the decade.
Giannakopoulos, who is also the President of the Observatory of Organized Crime (OCO), claimed to Sarawak Report that he organised the event to discuss the real issues behind the 1MDB and that he is working for the Office of the Swiss Attorney General (OAG).
In an email response to The Independent a couple of days ago, the OAG said it does not deal with individuals who are irrelevant to the 1MDB or to any other investigation it is engaged in.
“I take the questions posed on the margins of this seminar very seriously, and I have asked the person concerned to stay in the background while I conduct a close examination,” confirms Prof. Frédéric Esposito, the direct supervisor of Nicolas Giannakopoulos at the OUS.
The Swiss based newspaper said the decision to suspend Giannakopoulos is the result of an article by the British journalist Clare Rewcastle Brown, questioning the role of the Geneva researcher in a meeting organized by the latter in October 2016.
The event was placed under the aegis of the University of Geneva.
Nicolas Giannakopoulos, suspected of being an agent of the Malaysian government and responsible for collecting sensitive information concerning the 1MDB investigation, defended himself from any ties with the authorities in Kuala Lumpur, via a press release issued last Tuesday, said the paper.
Sarawak Report claimed the funding for the event came from an obvious client of Giannakopoulos, that is the Malaysian government and said the event in Geneva turned out to be a ‘black ops’ to test the waters on 1MDB among opponents to Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak.