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Cyprus

Sizopoulos summoned by police to give statement (Updated)

Edek leader Marinos Sizopoulos

Edek chairman Marinos Sizopoulos has been summoned by police to provide a deposition on Friday regarding his allegations that the party’s ousted MEP Demetris Papadakis had misused EU funds, a criminal offence if true.

“Mr Sizopoulos will be visiting the offices of Nicosia CID headquarters to provide a deposition tomorrow, February 14, 2020,” a police spokesman said late on Thursday.

The development came a day after police had launched an investigation into claims made by Sizopoulos to the effect that Papadakis had diverted EU funds to a private business.

Hours before the police statement, the attorney-general appeared to be cracking the whip on law enforcement by reminding them of the proper procedure for taking a deposition from an individual.

Costas Clerides was commenting on reports that the police had contacted Sizopoulos by phone, asking him “if he wished, to pass by police headquarters at his earliest convenience over the next few days.”
Clerides said this was not the correct procedure. It is not at an individual’s discretion to visit the police.

Also on Thursday it was announced that the Edek leader has informed European authorities over the possibility that Papadakis misused EU funds.

“The chairman of Edek has informed police HQ that he has personally briefed the relevant European bodies, which will deal with the issue,” a party statement said. “We have been assured that if necessary, they will ask for the assistance of the Cypriot authorities.”

The claims by Sizopoulos were made amid a war of words with Papadakis whom the party decided to eject on Monday evening.

Papadakis was accused of breaching an agreement he had entered into with Edek where, upon his election as MEP on their ticket, he undertook to uphold certain obligations expected of party officials as stipulated by party rules. Namely, that he would relinquish 10 per cent of his monthly salary to the party.
The row escalated with Sizopoulos alleging that the MEP had tried to secure EU subsidies to fund a private profit-making business, which was illegal.


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