The Nicosia criminal court will next month announce the sentence of former Paphos mayor Savvas Vergas over bribery charges he pled guilty to in connection with the case of the Paphos solid-waste management plant.
On Wednesday, his lawyer presented arguments for mitigation, following Vergas’ agreeing to transfer to the state a plot of land worth approximately €311,240, which is the sum he has admitted to have received in bribes.
The main argument for mitigation was the fact that any sentence over one year in prison would result in his total incarceration time exceeding the maximum penalty allowed by law for money-laundering, which is seven years in prison.
Vergas is already serving a six-year jail term for money-laundering in connection with the Paphos Sewerage Board bribery scandal.
His lawyer also argued that Vergas’ family circumstances have deteriorated since his conviction.
In addition to losing his father six days after his conviction in February 2015, Vergas’ son and mother are also facing health problems.
After being handed a six-year jail term, his lawyer said, Vergas’ wife filed for divorce.
Further, Vergas has been subject to such ridicule by the media that the impact on him and his family was worse than the six-year sentence he was handed, his lawyer said.
He also had his professional licence revoked permanently by the Cyprus Technical Chamber.
Vergas, his lawyer said, has shown exemplary conduct during his incarceration, due to which he has been selected to participate in the European ‘The art of change’ programme.
“The defendant has shown his remorse in every way possible, and tried to make amends opposite society,” he said.
“Crushed by guilt over his behaviour, he asks the court for leniency.”
The presiding judge announced that the court will issue its ruling on May 5.