Nicosia businessman Alexis “Alexoui” Mavromichalis has been released from jail, after police did not find any incrementing evidence against him.
Alexoui was initially arrested on Sunday early morning on drug-related charges, after cops obtained a statement from a 27-year-old suspect who was already in custody in connection with a drug case as well as the Nicosia drive-by shooting on November 26.
While cops said the two cases did not appear to be linked, there was an overlap of suspects between the drug deal and the shooting, where five bullets were shot at the vehicle of 57-year-old Nicosia businessman Nikos Rodhotheou, who was not injured in the incident.
The 27-year-old suspect, who was later named a prosecution witness, told investigators that Alexoui was the person talking on the phone with 40-year-old Josef “Sifis” Josef, who is wanted in both cases. Sifis reportedly said he and Alexoui brought the drugs from Greece, accordign to the suspect.
There was talk of Alexoui’s attorney taking the matter to the Supreme Court, on the basis that his client was being denied a fair hearing
But Alexoui’s attorney, Andros Pelekanos, pointed out that the suspect was only speculating about his client, with the suspect saying he knew Sifis would only talk to Alexoui.
Pelekanos also pointed out the judge, Honourable Christiana Parpota who ordered the five-day remand for his client, was the same judge who signed Alexoui’s arrest warrant, essentially rendering her ineligible to preside over the remand hearing.
Pelekanos, who cried foul over the use of hearsay evidence, had pleaded with the court to ask the 27-year-old suspect directly whether Alexoui was involved in the drug case.
“Why don’t you ask the witness whether or not Alexoui was involved in the case?” the defence argued.
The judge dismissed the argument, saying there were legitimate suspicions over the involvement of Alexoui, citing the fact that the 27-year-old witness told cops he had a good impression of who might have been on the other end of the line talking to Sifis.
Media reports later said there was talk of Alexoui’s attorney taking the matter to the Supreme Court, on the basis that his client was being denied a fair hearing.
On Friday, police said there was no incriminating evidence or further basis to keep Alexoui in custody.
Another 24-year-old suspect, who is the brother of the 27-year-old, remains in custody, with cops saying he appears to have been involved in a drug deal in Nicosia. The 24-year-old says he got a call that his brother had been arrested and was told to go to his apartment in Anthoupoli, wherre his arrested brother had been staying for some time, to get rid of “some things.”