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Crime Cyprus

Main suspect in double murder says his rights have been violated

Main suspect Loizos Tzionis

The main defendant in a double murder case is seeking a judicial review claiming violation of his human rights, it emerged on Monday.

Loizos Tzionis, 33, claimed his right to a fair trial and presumption of innocence had been compromised and asked the supreme court on Monday to approve legal aid so that he could file a motion for judicial review.

Andreas Anastasiou, who represents the 33-year-old in the trial relating to the double murder of teacher Giorgos Hadjigeorgiou, 60, and his wife Dina Sergiou, 59, at first said he would also be handling the motion.

But Judge Despo Michaelidou told Anastasiou that he had no say in the matter before the defendant’s request for legal aid was approved.

“I cannot hear you until the request is approved and you are appointed,” she said.

The state told the court Tzionis had filed two identical motions but provided no details beyond a general claim that his rights were violated.

The state said it could not make any arguments before the defendant clarified his claims.

The court agreed that Tzionis’ claim was vague and gave him until February 20 to submit a detailed request.

Tzionis, along with three other defendants, his 22-year-old friend Marios Hadjixenophontos, girlfriend Sarah Shams, 21, and his 23-year-old half-brother, Lefteris Solomou, have been charged with killing the couple.

The defendant had initially admitted seven of eight charges relating to the murder – but denied burglary claiming the house was open – and then changed his mind, pleading not guilty to all counts.

The trial continues on Thursday.

 

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