Cyprus Mail

Greece ignored Cyprus’ request to appeal quashing of Bobolas extradition

Leonidas Bobolas

Cypriot authorities asked the Greek government to file an appeal against a decision by Greek courts not to extradite Greek business tycoon Leonidas Bobolas, but their request was not heeded, a justice ministry source has told the Cyprus Mail.
The justice ministry was responding to a story carried by daily Kathimerini, which said that no appeal was filed against the May 25 decision, and in the meantime the deadline for doing so had lapsed.
According to the ministry, the final decision on whether the decision would be appealed rested with the Greek prosecutors.
The 24-hour deadline was missed by the Greek authorities despite the timely request for an appeal to be filed, the source said.
On the day of the Greek ruling, Attorney-general Costas Clerides had said that authorities here would be determining their next move once they had acquired and reviewed the full text of the Greek ruling.
In their decision, Greece’s judicial authorities accepted the premise that the offences attributed to Bobolas – which he himself denies – took place in Greece, not Cyprus.
A ban on Bobolas from leaving Greece was also lifted.
At the same time, reports said, the Cypriot file on Bobolas was ordered delivered to Greek prosecutors who would look into it and determine whether there are grounds for indictment in Greece.
Cyprus had asked Greece to extradite Bobolas, a Greek national facing charges of conspiracy to commit a criminal offence, bribing a public official and money laundering.
Bobolas is CEO of Helector, the company at the centre of a waste management scandal.
Helector, the operator of two landfills – one at Marathounda, Paphos, the other at Koshi, Larnaca – is alleged to have overcharged municipalities while public officials skimming off the top turned a blind eye.
Interviewed previously by Cypriot police, Helector executives have alleged that Bobolas was not only aware of the overcharging and the bribes, but was also orchestrating the backhanders from Athens.
The case will be heard at the Nicosia criminal court on June 15. So far 12 people have been indicted, and three more individuals are expected to be added to the charge sheet.

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