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Man accused of sexual abuse questioned by police

Olympic Sailing Champion Sofia Bekatorou Leaves The Prosecutor's Office In Athens
Greek Olympic sailing champion Sophia Bekatorou

The man accused of sexual abuse by sports shooter Andri Eleftheriou gave a statement to the police on Monday, more than two weeks after the complaint was filed.

His two-hour statement was given early on Monday at the Nicosia criminal investigation department (CID), police sources confirmed to the Cyprus Mail.

“He made some allegations that are being investigated,” the source said.

Eleftheriou reported her abuser on January 20, following a meeting with Justice Minister Emily Yiolitis who expressed her and her ministry’s support to her and other women who were abused.

Immediately afterwards, the president of the Cyprus sports shooting federation Giovannis Savvides told the media he knows the suspect, who was a member of the Olympic Committee and has also given his name to the police.

Police notified the alleged abuser to give a statement earlier, but he failed to appear, citing health problems of his lawyer.

According to Savvides, the man in question had also been reported in 2011 and 2014 before being appointed headteacher at a school where there was another report. After that, the man was retired early.

The female sports shooter spoke about her abuse on television twice in the past, in 2018 and again in December last year, but her case failed to receive any attention prior to a domino of similar allegations in Greece.

Eleftheriou said she was sexually harassed and abused a number of times at the 2006 Commonwealth Games in Melbourne and also in Peking in 2008 by the same man, who held an “authoritative position”.

The domino effect of sexual harassment reports started when Greek Olympic gold medalist Sophia Bekatorou spoke up about her rape by a high-ranking Hellenic Sailing Federation (HSF) official back in 1998.



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