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Prisons director called to police HQ to give statement

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Prison director Anna Aristotelous being greeted by inmates (Christos Theodorides)

Prisons director Anna Aristotelous was called into the police headquarters on Thursday morning to submit statements in the recent case centered on charges of leaking classified information.

She told reporters outside HQ that she was being persecuted because she reported on corruption, but said she has no regrets and will continue to fight the system.

“I will continue to battle corruption… because I believe that I acted correctly,” she said, adding that if she could turn back time she would do it again.

She was called in to submit statement after police it was revealed on Monday that the police opened an investigation into her and her assistant for leaking classified information.

Aristotelous and the unit’s senior officer Athina Demetriou are now facing criminal investigations for leaking “classified information” which concerned the justice ministry. The document in question detailed that the ministry would seek to monitor – and not block – phone use from the prisons.

“There were two complaints on July 15 centered on a document which was published on July 13 in the local press,” police spokesman Christos Andreou told the Cyprus News Agency.

He added that based on those complaints the police are now investigating a criminal case related to the laws on leaking classified information and protecting personal data.

In return, just hours later, the lawyers of the two women issued a statement on their behalf stating that: “Whomever dares report on the interference and corruption of a member and high-ranking officer of the police will be devoured by the system.”

The prisons row exploded to the fore in mid-June when Aristotelous alleged that a senior police officer was colluding with an inmate to secure damaging footage of her and her assistant.

The police investigation into the two women now raises the total prisons investigations to three – the two others having been directed by the attorney general (AG).

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