Cyprus Mail
Crime

Parents of hit-and-run suspect challenge search warrant during trial

Nicosia court

A trial within a trial will be held before the Nicosia district court after the defence in the case of the parents of fatal hit-and-run suspect disputed the execution of the search warrant at their home.

Herodotos and Nitsa Irodotou face charges including fabrication of evidence, forgery, perjury, and bribery relating to a trial in 2008 that acquitted their daughter, Efi, 29, of causing the death of Emilios Ioannou, 17, through reckless driving and failure to stop at a red light in Limassol in 2007.

During Friday’s hearing, the prosecution submitted as evidence the transcripts of the trial, taken from the couple’s home during a search on February 28, 2011.

Defence attorney Chris Triantafyllides objected to the submission, claiming that the search order had been wrongly executed by the officers.

He argued that the three officers executing the warrant went beyond the instructions given by the court, removing more items than what the court had mandated.

The prosecution denied the claims, prompting the court to announce a trial within a trial on March 23 to decide whether the search warrant had been properly executed.

Before the interruption, officer Maria Pentaliotou, who serves at the cybercrime department, explained to the court how one could forge documents using software found on the internet.

Efi Irodotou, who is being tried separately, had been wanted by police since 2011 over the hit-and-run.

She was apparently living in Greece with her parents since.

Irodotou had been tried and acquitted in 2009, but state prosecutors preparing for an appeal discovered that evidence submitted in her trial had been forged and tampered with, and at least one defence witness had perjured himself.

Once a retrial was ordered by the Supreme Court in 2011, police probes into allegedly falsified evidence submitted in court led to the arrests of the 34-year-old state prosecutor who tried the case and two lawyers who had defended Irodotou. The prosecutor later resigned.

Serbian national Goran Vucic has already testified that he had lied in the first trial in exchange for work.

 


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