A Limassol criminal court has acquitted two more defendants in a teen overdose death back in 2018, saying prosecutors failed to provide sufficient evidence proving them guilty of manslaughter.
Two male defendants, a Syrian and an Egyptian suspected of dealing drugs, were acquitted of manslaughter charges on Friday after the court bench ruled that prosecutors failed to provide incriminating evidence proving the unlawful killing of Ioannis Asikkis beyond a reasonable doubt.
Asikkis, who died in hospital on 14 June 2018, one day shy of his 18th birthday, had collapsed from a drug overdose and suffered a heart attack four days earlier.
Prosecutors said the suspects were being accused of supplying MDMA, a psychedelic substance known as Molly, but did not present evidence linking them to the fatal overdose
Police had raided a cafeteria in Trachonas where Asikkis was believed to have found the illegal drugs, arresting three foreign nationals including one identified after matching a description given to law enforcement by friends of the 18-year-old. Police said the suspect was being accused of supplying Asikkis with MDMA, a psychedelic substance also known as “Molly,” but did not present evidence proving a link to the fatal overdose.
Charalambos Sakkos, the cafeteria's owner who left Cyprus and traveled to Holland, was also acquitted of manslaughter back in May. He had been arrested by Dutch authorities and extradited back to the island on multiple charges including illegal drug possession, money laundering, and conspiracy to commit a felony.
Reports said Asikkis paid €20 for his drugs, including what was believed to be ecstasy. After he got high, he reportedly went to meet up with his friends in a public space in Mouttayiaka where he collapsed.
He was initially rushed to Limassol General Hospital following a heart attack linked to a drug overdose. He was then transferred to Nicosia General due to his critical condition, where he remained in a coma until he took his last breath four days later. An official autopsy showed multiple organ failure as the casue of death.
His friends later met at Molos pier at the Limassol seafront, wearing white T-shirts, where they released balloons in the sky in their mate’s memory. Family and friends said Ioannis was a well-loved kid and always eager to help others.
It was not fully clear whether alcohol abuse was suspected. Experts say individuals who mix MDMA and alcohol mistakenly think they are less impaired, causing them to consume more alcohol leading to potential alcohol poisoning that can lead quickly to death without medical intervention.