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Cyprus

Remand for three in cocaine haul (Updated)

By Angelos Anastasiou

The three suspects arrested on Friday in connection with the seizure by police of some 100 kilos of cocaine, 33, 34 and 42, were remanded for eight days by the Limassol District Court on Saturday.

According to the head of the Limassol drug squad (YKAN), the three are facing charges of conspiracy to commit a crime, illegal importing of a Class A narcotic, and possession with intent to sell.

Stating the facts of the case, the lead investigator said that following a tip that a major quantity of drugs would be moved from Limassol to Larnaca, police placed the ‘Enaerios’ parking lot in Limassol under close surveillance.

A van parked in the parking lot, he added, was approached by the two suspects in a second car, two Greek Cypriots aged 33 and 34. One took the van and the other escorted him in the second car.

Near the Mouttayiakka exit on the highway, YKAN members cut off and searched the two vehicles. The search produced two suitcases filled with packages of various sizes containing cocaine, as well as an empty box.

The two drivers were arrested, and evidence seized – apart from the drugs – included four mobile phones, the van’s rental papers, and five travel backpacks.

Meanwhile, subsequent investigations implicated a third individual, a 42-year-old businessman from Paralimni, Famagusta, whom the two suspects planned to deliver the drugs to for a fee. He was also arrested on Friday night.

A search of the businessman’s home found his mobile phone and the key to a bank safe deposit box, also seized as evidence.

The court was told that investigations are at a very early stage, with nine statements taken and six searches conducted thus far in Limassol and Larnaca.

The lead investigator added that 37 more statements are scheduled, as well as four additional searches, while Interpol has been engaged in order to establish the origin of the drugs.

Also, investigators have asked for the lifting of the three suspects’ telecommunication records.

The court ordered their remand for eight days, which the defence lawyers did not object to.

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