A man in rural Nicosia who tried to burn a patch of reeds over the weekend went back moments later and put the flames out after being chased by drone as he was trying to leave the area.
Police said a 70-year-old male was spotted by a drone in the sky on Saturday in Orounda, as he was trying to engage in illegal burning of grass in a field outside the village.
According to Forestry Department Director Charalambos Alexandrou, who spoke on state radio Monday morning, the elderly suspect had driven to an area where he got off his vehicle and set a reed patch on fire.
'The man was frightened as the drone was chasing him, you can imagine the terror, it got very close,' he said, adding the suspect had a change of heart and went back to right a wrong
Alexandrou said an aerial drone operated by a user from the Cyprus Institute, in collaboration with the forestry department, spotted the illegal activity and flew the drone very close to the suspect as he was trying to leave.
“The man was frightened as the drone was chasing him, you can imagine the terror, it got very close,” Alexandrou said, adding the suspect had a change of heart and went back to right a wrong.
According to the forestry director, the drone had recorded clear images including the driver’s license plate.
“So he went straight back and behaved responsibly as he ought to have behaved in the first place,” Alexandrou said, adding that the man put out the fire and left.
Police said the suspect was later called to the Peristerona station on Sunday, when he was questioned over the incident and confessed to starting the fire.
He is facing charges related to illegal burning of grass.