Cyprus Mail

Remand for man who ‘was driven by joblessness’ to rob bank

A 56-YEAR-OLD MAN was remanded in custody for eight days on Thursday in connection with the attempted armed robbery of a bank in Larnaca earlier in the day.

The man from Trahoni, Limassol, was arrested shortly after entering the Hellenic bank branch on Zinonos Kitieos Street at around 7am and threatening staff with a sawn-off hunting shotgun.

There were no customers in the branch at the time.

The court heard that Christakis Panayi had approached a female employee in the rear of the branch and showed her the weapon, which was in a bag.

He told her it was robbery and asked her to knock on the door so that he could get inside.

As soon as he entered the branch, he pulled the weapon out and asked for the money, the court heard.

The bank manager activated the alarm, which is linked with the police, who arrived on the scene soon afterwards.

Officers found the suspect standing there with the shotgun in his hand, while the staff were in the kitchen.

The officers disarmed the suspect and found two shotgun cartridges in his pocket.

The shotgun, which police said belonged to the man’s late father, was not loaded.

“I am not a bad person, I have been unemployed for years,” the man told the officers while he was being arrested.

He later told officers that he was facing a lot of financial problems and was planning to rob the bank on Wednesday but had changed his mind.


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