By Evie Andreou
A 48-year-old man who drove into the back of a car killing its driver in Limassol last week, was remanded in custody for a further four days on Monday, as Attorney-general Costas Clerides instructed police to look into whether manslaughter charges could be brought against him.
At the same time, police said they were seeking the driver of a white saloon car, which was in the area at the time, and could have witnessed the fatal crash.
It was around 3am on Friday when Yiannis Kyriakides slammed into the rear of 25-year-old Stephanos Georgiou’s car, which was stopped at the traffic lights in the Enaerios area.
The force of the collision was such that it sent Georgiou’s car flying into a steel pole across the road.
The 25-year-old from Kolossi died in the wreckage.
Kyriakides, who is under police guard in Limassol hospital after suffering a fractured leg in the crash, was remanded in custody for four days on Monday, as a two-day remand issued on Saturday expired.
A taxi driver, Kyriakides faced charges in connection with causing death by negligence, refusal to undergo a breathalyser test, impersonation, assault, driving while his licence was suspended and disobeying a court order.
But he could also face life in jail, after Clerides said that the events concerning the accident were so extreme, that he had decided to give instructions for the incident to be investigated as manslaughter. The maximum sentence for manslaughter is life in prison.
Kyriakides, a taxi driver, had been given a two-month suspended sentence earlier this year for speeding and driving under the influence of alcohol.
Both his professional and personal driver’s licences had been revoked for six months.
Following Friday’s incident, he had been taken to a private clinic where he gave a false name, police said.
He later assaulted officers, nurses, and a security guard before he was taken to a police station.
Kyriakides initially refused to undergo a breathalyser test and did the same later when asked to provide a blood sample.
Police secured a court order and got their sample, which was sent to the state lab for testing that will include drugs and alcohol.
The incidents of drink driving are a source of increasing concern with police saying over the weekend that in the last month they had booked 805 people for drink driving out of around 9,500 alcohol checks – almost 27 people a day.
In the latest incident a driver was found to be six times over the limit after colliding head-on with a taxi while driving into oncoming traffic on the stretch of the Larnaca-Nicosia highway near Kofinou late on Saturday night.
No one was seriously injured in the crash though both cars were damaged. The two drivers were given first aid at Larnaca General Hospital.
According to police, at around 11.30pm they received information that there was a vehicle driving into oncoming traffic in the direction Kofinou-Larnaca.
The 45-year-old from Nicosia collided head-on with a taxi driver from Larnaca, aged 53.
Kofinou police, when they reached the scene, carried out a breathalyser test on both men. The taxi driver was clean but the other driver was so drunk, police said, that they could not carry out the test properly. Through a blood test it was determined that the 45-year-old had 131 microgrammes of alcohol in his blood when the limit is 22.