Cyprus Mail
Crime Cyprus

Police return confiscated CFA computers

By Constantinos Psillides
FOOTBALL season will recommence as scheduled on January 3, a statement from the Cyprus Football Association (CFA) said on Wednesday after police returned all computers and equipment confiscated last month.
Police investigators raided the CFA offices late on December 23, following accusations by international referee Marios Panayi regarding match-fixing in the island’s top league.
“Since our equipment has been safely returned, we can work on Friday January 2 and be ready for the top league’s second round that kicks-off on Saturday,” said the statement.
CFA chairman Kostakis Koutsokoumnis issued a statement last week warning that the championship’s second round kick-off day could be postponed because CFA officials could not go to work. This was only a day after Koutsokoumnis jokingly told media that if he knew about the police’s intention to raid the CFA offices, “I would deliver them the computers myself.”
Referee Panayi caused an uproar within the football community when he gave a press conference claiming that he had recordings, documents and other evidence proving that members of the CFA were fixing matches, in particular those deciding which team would be relegated to the second division.
The whistleblower subsequently gave police a lengthy statement.
According to reports, much of the information Panayi has supplied comprises audio recordings and emails. Because a great deal of this information was illegally obtained, it cannot be used in court, which is partly why police need to corroborate Panayi’s allegations by getting hold of the CFA’s documents.
While the case is currently under investigation and Attorney-general Costas Clerides has pledged to thoroughly investigate, only one arrest warrant was made so far. It concerned an ARIS Limassol football club official Panayiotis Panayiotou, who was accused by former ARIS boss Kyriakos Hadjikyriakou of threatening him. Panayiotou turned himself in late on Christmas Eve and was released the next morning.
Panayi has repeatedly stated that if the legal services can’t build a case he would make all of his evidence available to the public.

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