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15 April, 2024
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Twists and cover-ups surrounding the death of Thanasis Nikolaou

From alleged bullying to suspicious autopsies - The disturbing chronicle of the National Guardsman's death


In a riveting continuation of the death interrogation for National Guardsman Thanasis Nikolaou, criminal investigator Savvas Matsas delivered compelling testimonies, unveiling distressing details and alleging an apparent cover-up in the investigation. The proceedings were marked by tense moments, including the denial of requests to subpoena forensic experts and a Lieutenant, prompting the family's lawyer to hint at a shocking confession by another individual.

Matsas, appointed by the Attorney General, revealed unsettling aspects of Thanasis' life in the military camp, describing it as "martyrdom." The young Guardsman faced constant bullying, reportedly subjected to derogatory remarks and even forced confessions. Matsas cited instances of harassment, including placing papers on his feet and igniting a fire while he slept. The investigator highlighted the victim's desperate desire to leave the camp and the emotional toll it took on him.

Matsas questioned the hasty conclusions of coroner Panikos Stavrianos, emphasizing the lack of a thorough examination. Stavrianos allegedly ruled the death a suicide within 10-15 minutes, disregarding scientific protocols. Matsas pointed to inconsistencies, challenging the forensic pathologist's findings, and accused Stavrianos of attempting to mislead.

The family's lawyer raised concerns about a person's testimony claiming another individual's admission to Thanasis' murder, indicating potential leads were overlooked during the initial investigation. The courtroom witnessed emotional outbursts from Thanasis' mother, reflecting the family's frustration over the handling of the case. Tensions flared during cross-examinations, with accusations of unscientific behavior and attempts to deceive, adding to the charged atmosphere.

The case drew international attention, with the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) condemning Cyprus for its insufficient investigation. The ECHR ordered compensation for Thanasis' family, highlighting the inadequacies in the handling of the case. The family's persistent efforts led to the exhumation of Thanasis' remains, revealing new evidence that challenges the initial suicide ruling.

Recent developments, including a new forensic report conducted in Greece, suggest that Thanasis Nikolaou's death was due to strangulation. The findings add complexity to an already controversial case, reigniting the family's pursuit for justice and shedding light on potential systemic failures within the military investigation process.

[Source: 24News]

Cyprus  |  crime  |  murder  |  Thanasis

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