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Cyprus

Court orders attorney-general to hand over evidence

Former deputy police chief Andreas Kyriacou at an earlier court appearance

Nicosia district court in an interim ruling on Friday ordered Attorney-General to Costas Clerides to hand over findings from his investigations into former deputy police chief Andreas Kyriacou to the defendant’s team.

The case before the court has the attorney-general prosecuting Kyriacou for allegedly leaking confidential information to the press about an assassination attempt on a businessman.

Clerides carried out a series of probes which eventually concluded that Kyriacou was behind the leaks to the media. He was fired by the president last year as a result.

Two of the findings have been handed over to Kyriacou’s defence team. However, a third has been contested for a long time as the attorney-general has refused to hand it over, arguing that it is not witness material that should be shared.

During the court session on Friday, the judge said he was surprised that Clerides continued to refuse to give the contents of the investigation to the defendant’s team.

The attorney-general had previously asked the court of first instance – in this case the district court – to turn to the supreme court so they could decide on whether the specific findings should be handed over to the defence team.

On March 31, Cyprus’ top court ruled the case could proceed based on the district court’s decision which had earlier outlined the material should be given to Kyriacou’s defence team.

Andros Pelecanos, Kyriacou’s lawyer, said prosecution has taken too long over this matter. “They should have given us the findings by now,” he said.

The prosecution has 15 days to hand over the material and the case is set to continue on September 26 at 9:30am.

Kyriacou denies all charges. The charge sheet contains 27 witnesses including Justice Minister Ionas Nicolaou.

The former deputy police chief is accused of leaking to the media that Serbian Interpol had given their Cypriot counterparts a tip that an assassination attempt was going to take place against Ayia Napa businessman Phanos Kalopsidiotis months before he was finally murdered in June 2016.

The police officer in Cyprus who was dealing with the information from Serbia called the man believed to be the mastermind behind the contract killing, apparently thinking he was actually calling Serbian Interpol.

This alerted the man who called off the hit.

Kyriacou is also suspected of having leaked the 2015 report which had been classified as a service document and was intended only for internal police use. A copy of the report was presented last June however by an MP at the House ethics committee while the next day parts of it were published in a newspaper


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