Cyprus Mail

Man dies after jumping from fifth floor during police raid (Update 3)

limassol crime scene

Police seek out landlord, dangerous apartment crammed with 11 people rented for €2,000

A 23-year-old man fell to his death on Wednesday, after he jumped out of a fifth-floor apartment to get away from a police raid on illegal migration.

The man from Bangladesh jumped out of a window when police came knocking at 6:20am.

A 22-year-old man who also lived in the same apartment jumped out of the balcony and fell 7.5 metres down to a neighbouring flat’s balcony. He is currently in serious condition at Limassol general hospital with fractures across his body.

A total of 11 people from Bangladesh were crammed in the apartment, in Limassol’s city centre. The rundown building bears a sign classifying it as dangerous to live in by the municipality.

The Honourary Consulate of Bangladesh told the Cyprus Mail “it is sad that police chose this festive day of Eid to do this raid, which had these tragic consequences.

“We are waiting for the police report investigation over the incident.”

Petros Zeniou, from the police migration department described the incident as a tragedy. “A migrant lost his life in an attempt to escape a police check, jumping from a fifth-floor apartment,”

“This is terribly sad,” he told Omega news.

The 11 Bangladeshi nationals were paying a total of €2,000 in rent, the state broadcaster said. They were working with restaurants in the neighbouring area.

Police had come to raid the apartment, after a neighbour reported to police that illegal migrants were living in the building.

The landlord has been called to present himself to a police station with the rental contract.

Limassol CID police chief Lefteris Kyriacou told the Cyprus Mail that efforts were underway to try to locate the 23-year-old’s family members, but it was difficult due to his illegal status.

He jumped from a side window of the apartment and died, while another jumped to a neighbouring balcony and suffered serious fractures all over this body.

Asked how 11 people were living in the apartment, Zenios said “the hallway was used as a bedroom. The main bedroom had seven to eight people living in it.”

Mattresses were primarily used as makeshift beds, with Zenios adding “there’s been times we found more people crammed. Like 35 to 40 people crammed in a three-bedroom apartment.

“Migrants try to save money so they can send back to their family members at home. Or even to pay their smugglers. So they try to find low-rent accommodation.”

As such, landlords reap hundreds – if not thousands of euros – in profits by taking money off the migrants, Zeniou added.

Limassol’s CID chief said that the two individuals jumped from the apartment when police entered the flat.

Zeniou however highlighted “before police even entered the flat, two of the migrants jumped. One from one side of the apartment, and the officer was trying to handle it. As he tried to run for help, he realised another migrant was hanging from the window.”

The officer on scene tried to get help from some of the migrants at the flat but “the migrant jumped and lost his life.”

Police found that all 11 people were living in Cyprus illegally, as was one person living in a neighbouring apartment.

Kyriacou said a migration officer would examine their paperwork and they would most likely be deported. Asked where they are now, Kyriacou said “where they keep those that are found here illegally”.

He underlined that such home inspections do not require court arrest warrants. “When migration police carry out inspections for illegal migrants, it is the same as when a census is being made. They visit apartments, knock on the door and when they have the consent of the tenants, document the people living there.”

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