Cyprus Mail

Suspect in double murder objects to testimony of victims’ son

Main suspect Loizos Tzionis

A hearing of the long trial for the double murder of a couple in Strovolos last year was cut short on Wednesday before the court could decide on whether to allow the statement of the couple’s underage son to be presented.

The Nicosia criminal court on Wednesday heard the testimony of Nicosia CID police lieutenant Stavriani Andreou, who said she was present on two occasions when the written testimony of 15-year-old Constantinos Hadjigeorgiou was being taken.

Andreou said that she was present when the 15-year-old’s statement was being taken in the presence of his aunt at the home of a neighbour just after the killings.

The boy had sought refuge at the home of neighbour Athena Sideri after his parents Giorgos Hadjigeorgiou, 60, and Dina Sergiou, 59 were killed in a botched robbery in Strovolos on April 18, 2018.

The prosecuting team then asked the witness to read out the boy’s statement, triggering an objection from the defence of Loizos Tzionis, considered the mastermind of the crime.

The court declared a short recess to decide whether it would allow the statement to be read aloud in court, though upon resuming the court was forced to adjourn after the defence claimed that Tzionis was feeling unwell.

“His psychological condition does not allow him to continue observing the proceeding,” the lawyer said.

The court is expected to announce its decision on Thursday regarding the statement of the 15-year-old.

Also on trial for the double murder are Lefteris Solomou the half-brother of Tzionis, and friend Marios Hadjixenophontos.

The three face two counts of premeditated murder, conspiracy to commit felony, burglary, robbery and abduction. Premeditated murder carries an automatic life sentence.

A fourth defendant, Tzionis’ ex-girlfriend Sarah Shams was sentenced to four years in jail in February on a single charge of conspiracy to commit robber. She had agreed to cooperate with the state in prosecuting the other defendants.

Shams was expected to testify before the court on Wednesday, but her testimony was postponed due to the absence of the lawyer of Hadjixenophontos for health reason

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