By Annette Chrysostomou
A couple aged 37 and 32 who were arrested in connection with the theft of 50 rings worth €20,000 from a Paphos jewellery shop on Tuesday were remanded for eight days on Friday.
During the hearing at Paphos court it came to light that they may have been involved in two more robberies, one from an optician’s in Paphos and one from a florist’s in Nicosia.
The court ordered the suspects to remain in custody as otherwise they might influence witnesses who have not yet been questioned and they could escape from Cyprus as they are foreigners with no ties to the country.
According to investigator Alvino Kanaris, the 37-year-old man is involved in three burglaries and the 32-year-old woman in two.
The male suspect reportedly stole a pair of glasses worth €325 from an optician’s in Paphos. Both denied any involvement in the theft.
On September 20, the owner of a Nicosia florist’s told police his father was working in the shop when the couple entered. While he was serving the woman, the man allegedly approached the place where the cash register was kept, pretending to look at a bird cage nearby.
A few hours after they left, when the owner returned to the shop, he found €900 was missing from the till.
The suspects told the court they arrived from the north at the end of September and have been staying in a hotel since. The man admitted to stealing 15 rings rather than 50 from the jeweller and said the 32-year-old knew nothing about the theft until later when they sold the rings for €400.
Regarding the theft from the florist’s, the man said he was in the north at the time, while the woman said she knew nothing about the case.
Kanaris said police examinations were at an initial stage and eight persons had been questioned, while another 25 statements will be examined. Video footage from the area where the crimes were committed will also be investigated.
Police arrested the couple in Polis Chrysochous. They had entered the jewellery shop located on Makarios Avenue in Paphos and, while the woman was distracting the owner with questions about various items, the man allegedly grabbed a case with 50 rings and hid it under his shirt.
The incident was recorded by the shop’s surveillance cameras. The shop owner realised the theft later in the day and reported it to police.