Cyprus Mail

Relatives try to assault attempted murder suspect

File photo: Larnaca court

The trial of a Mazotos man for the attempted murder of a fellow villager was postponed until later this month on Thursday, as relatives of the victim tried to attack the defendant when he arrived under police guard.

Nasos Demetriou, 23, from Mazotos faces charges in connection with the December 17 stabbing of Michalis Vassiliou from the same village.

Riot police intervened when friends and relatives of the victim tried to approach Demetriou and threatened him outside the courtroom.

Police then requested all who were standing in the courtroom to leave before escorting the defendant into the room.

Things did not get any better once the hearing got underway with the judge telling those present, in no uncertain terms, to behave themselves

“We will not allow anything that is not appropriate in the courtroom. Neither shouting nor outbursts, or insults, or anything else that does not fit in court.”

The defence lawyer then asked for time from the court to be given witness statements from the prosecution, a request the prosecution did not object to, saying that some of the material was not available as it was in laboratories for forensic test.

The judge set February 21 as the date for the next hearing and ordered Demetriou be held in custody at the central prisons until then.

The accused then remained in court for quite a while until the relatives and friends of the victim were cleared from the route to the holding cells of the building.

Demetriou faces charges of attempted murder, knife possession, and reckless and negligent acts.

The suspect was arrested on December 17 last year following a 1.30am argument in a village coffee shop in which he assaulted a 27-year-old for an unknown reason.

The accused left the coffee shop but returned minutes later in a car, which according to police he used to hit a 20-year-old man before driving outside a supermarket where the 27-year-old was standing.

Police said the suspect then got out of the car and stabbed the man twice in the chest and neck before speeding off.

The men were rushed to Larnaca hospital, after which doctors decided to transfer the 27-year-old to Nicosia general hospital due to the severity of his injuries.

The man underwent surgery and was in critical condition, while the second injured man was treated for a bruised thigh and discharged.

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