The 33-year-old man who stole a box containing the ashes of a Swedish teenager was jailed for ten months by the Limassol district court on Wednesday.
The thief expressed remorse in court, while his 35-year-old girlfriend was acquitted of charges relating to theft and malicious damage.
He had a previously received an eight-month suspended sentence for thefts in the past, which have now been activated due to his reoffending. Five months of this previous sentence were added onto Wednesday’s 10-month sentence, and he will serve a total of 15 months in prison.
The stolen box of ashes was eventually returned to the Polish family on New Year’s Day after the 33-year-old thief cooperated with authorities.
The family came to Cyprus at the end of December to scatter the ashes of their 19-year-old son, Dennis Bebnarz, but the box was stolen from their rented car while they were eating at a restaurant in Limassol.
His mother, Kinga Bebnarz, said the thief called her in tears and apologised for the incident when he discovered what he had done. He said he had believed the box contained valuables.
The box was returned to the couple. They boarded a boat in early January and scattered the ashes at sea in Limassol, as was Dennis’ wish.