A 33-year-old man was sentenced to 14 years in prison by the Paphos criminal court on Thursday for smuggling over 26 kilogrammes of cannabis into Cyprus.

According to the case’s history, on July 13, at 8.15pm, the man arrived on a flight from Thessaloniki at Paphos airport. According to the police at the time, he was acting nervously, raising suspicions that he might be carrying something illegal.

Upon intervention by customs officials and subsequent checks, 16 transparent nylon packages were found in one of his suitcases and 12 in another one. All the bags contained dried cannabis.

Additionally, according to the Cyprus News Agency, at 8.40pm, a shoulder bag carried by the man was found to be containing the sum of €1,650,000. When contacted by the Cyprus Mail, however, the police could not confirm that the large sum of money was found and seized by custom officials at the time.

The Paphos criminal court found the accused guilty of illegally importing a controlled substance classified as Category B, weighing 26 kilogrammes and 272.9 grammes, violating the law on narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances.

He was charged with illegal possession and possession with the intent to distribute.

When pronouncing the sentence, the judge referred to the severity of the offenses committed by the accused, resulting in lengthy imprisonment.

The conditions under which the crimes were committed, involving the accused transporting a significant quantity of cannabis, were also highlighted by the judge.

“If not intercepted by the police, the drugs would have circulated within the country,” he said when pronouncing the sentence.

The court also added that the imposed penalties for the charges would run concurrently, with the time spent in custody in relation to the case, starting from July 13, being deducted from the sentence.