By Alex Spillius
A Greek investigative journalist prosecuted by his government for publishing a list of wealthy Greeks with Swiss bank accounts has said he was prepared to go to prison for the offence.
Speaking before receiving the Journalism prize at the Index on Censorship Freedom of Expression in London, Kostas Vaxevanis said it had been his duty to publish the list in defiance of the Greek establishment.
Kirsty Hughes, the Index’s chief executive officer, said: ‘Kostas has stood up to an economic and political elite who want to close down debate on one of the biggest crises in Europe’s history.’
Other prizes went to Pakistani schoolgirl Malala Yousafzai, Palestinian-born Syrian internet activist Bassel Khartabil and South African photographer Zanele Muholi.
Mr Vaxevanis’s case caused uproar in Greece and internationally. He was found not guilty of breaking data privacy laws in November, but the Athens public prosecutor subsequently ordered a retrial for June.
Speaking ahead of the awards ceremony, Mr Vaxevanis said he would be prepared to go to jail “just to show people what is happening in Greece”