Cyprus Mail

Cocaine dealers get harsh sentences

Larnaca courthouse

By Stefanos Evripidou

TWO MEN were handed down sentences of 9 and 11 years in prison yesterday after admitting to charges of importing, possessing and intention to sell over 2.5kg of cocaine.

The Criminal court in Larnaca imposed a nine year sentence on Christos Kotsakis, 50, from Greece, and 11 years for Renos Zertalis, 49, from Nicosia after they confessed to charges of conspiring to commit a crime, importing an illegal class A drug (cocaine) and intending to sell it to others.

For the same case, 58-year-old Soteris Athinis from Limassol and Andreas Alexandrou, 39, from Nicosia also stand accused but deny the charges.

Presiding judge Nicolaos Sandis said Kotsakis brought the drugs from abroad to Larnaca airport on April 19, hidden in a specially made panel in his luggage.

In sentencing, Sandis said he took into account the age of the two accused, their family and personal circumstances and the importance of their admission of guilt. He referred to their remorse, the health condition of the second defendant and his dependence on cocaine.

He also took into account their cooperation with police and willingness to testify as witnesses in the case.

The court set September 8 and 9 as the dates for the trial of Athinis and Alexandrou for the same case.

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