Mayors and Greek businessmen accused for Cyprus Landfill scandal

Mayors and Greek businessmen accused for Cyprus Landfill scandal

Nicosia, March 31, 2016/ Independent Balkan News Agency

By Kyriacos Kyriacou

Twelve defendants, among them the Larnaka mayor Andreas Louroudjiatis and former Pafos mayor of Pafos Savvas Vergas, who appear to be involved in the Paphos and Koshi landfill scandal, will appear in the Assize Court on April 26, the Nicosia District Court decided on Thursday.

In total the twelve defendants,  are facing 106 charges, including conspiring to commit a crime, Stealing from a public officer, Bribing a public officer, Illegal acquisition of property by a public official, Active bribery of public officials and Abuse of power. Ten of the defendants were released on a bail of 200,000 euros. Two other defendants Eftychios Malikkides and former Paphos mayor Savvas Vergas, are already in jail for the scandal around the Paphos liquid waste management scandal.

The 12 defendants in Paphos kai Koshi scandal are: Dimitris Patsalides (The economic director of Paphos), Michalis Pantis (overseer of work at Koshi landfill), Interior Ministry officers Antonis Kourzides, Stelios Papadopoulos, Christakis Petrou, Larnaca Mayor Andreas Louroudjiatis, the former Interior Ministry Employee Yiorgos Koulappis, his son Nikos Koulappis, civil engineer of Helector Imad Baqleh, and former director of the Greek company of Helector Dimitris Giannakopoulos.

Bobolas and Lolos arrested

On Wednesday, two more suspects,  Greek construction mogul Leonidas Bobolas and Theofanis Lolos, director of ENVIROPLANT, were arrested in Athens and are expected to be extracted to Cyprus.

Bobolas, for whom a European arrest warrant had been issued, turned up at an Athens police station and was arrested. On Wednesday he appeared before a magistrate, where his attorneys argued that some of the alleged offences attributed to Bobolas took place in Greece, and therefore Cypriot courts did not have jurisdiction. As per procedure, the magistrate ordered Bobolas released on his own recognizance, but ordered that his name be placed on a stop-list.

Greek judicial authorities will decide within 60 days whether Bobolas is to be extradited to Cyprus. Also arrested on Wednesday was Theofanis Lolos, director of ENVIROPLANT, a firm assigned by the interior ministry to oversee the waste management projects in Marathounda, Paphos and Koshi, Larnaca.

Lolos, also sought on the strength of a European arrest warrant, was placed under arrest at Athens’ Eleftherios Venizelos airport, as he prepared to board a flight to Cyprus.