Defense attorneys in the Glykas case are pointing fingers at law enforcement and state prosecution after the full exoneration of their clients, with reports saying a filing with the European Court of Human Rights was not out of the question in order to shed light on poor investigations by Cypriot police that resulted in a very long pre-trial detentions.
According to local media, state prosecutors this week withdrew their criminal case against Josef “Sifis” Josef who was a defendant in the attempted murder of Panicos “Glykas” Panayiotou.
Earlier this month three judges found that all claims and allegations made by Glykas, who had an attempt on his life back in 2017, were unfounded as the witness was found to be unreliable.
Sifis’ freedom came three weeks following the acquittals of Nicosia businessman Alexis “Alexoui” Mavromichalis and Miroslav “Rudolf” Balazovjech, who had spent a year and a half in pre-trial detention at Central Prisons after being denied bail in the same case. Josef had also spent time in a Turkish Cypriot jail in the north before being handed over to Greek Cypriot authorities.
The attorney said police are 'tasked with presenting facts and not whichever version they want,' adding the practice has been going on for many years in courtrooms across the Republic
The defence team had been challenging all along both Glykas’ story, which had been inconsistent over the years, as well as the prosecution’s handling of the case, arguing the defendants were not getting a fair trial.
But this month a criminal court ruling sided with defense attorneys Andros Pelekanos, Antonis Demetriou, Chara Alexandrou, and Marinos Kaoulla, after taking into consideration both the length of pre-trial detention but also lack of proper investigation into claims by witnesses who said they were pressured into implicating Alexoui and Rudolf as well as Sifis.
Defence attorney Andros Pelekanos argued that the detention of Alexoui was unlawful because it was based on contradictory witness statements, while adding there were ulterior motives.
It also turned out later that police never bothered to take statements from people who said in signed sworn statements that they had made untrue statements after receiving threats against themselves and their families.
Pelekanos, whose arguments in court prompted judges to call for a short recess a number of times, went as far to question the motives of police investigators.
The attorney had told judges that police were “tasked with presenting facts and not whichever version they want,” adding that this practice has been going on for many years in courtrooms across the Republic.
Legal experts according to local media say the defense may have grounds to take the Legal Department and Cyprus Police to ECHR on the allegation alone that police never followed up with investigating in depth Glykas’ allegations or claims by others who said they were forced to make untrue statements.