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07 April, 2020
 
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Tzionis seeks ruling on second autopsy

Strovolos double murder suspect tells Supreme Court his rights to a fair trial were violated

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The main Strovolos double murder suspect has formally asked the Supreme Court for judicial review, with sources saying he will ask judges to throw out a second autopsy report citing violation of his rights.

Loizos Tzionis, a plaintiff before the Supreme Court, is the main suspect in the Strovolos double murder trial, where 60-year-old Yiorgos Hadjigeorgiou and his 59-year-old wife Dina Sergiou were savagely stabbed to death on 18 April 2018.

The suspect, who is denying multiple charges including murder and burglary in the criminal case, is seeking legal aid before the Supreme Court in order to argue his human rights have been violated. The presiding judge has set February 20 for the Certiorari inquiry, when the prosecution in the criminal trial will also address the bench prior to the ruling on the request for legal aid.

Second autopsy back in the spotlight

Tzionis claims that his right to a fair trial and his presumption of innocence were violated, with media sources citing at least one issue regarding the legality of a second autopsy.

Greek forensics professor Chara Speliopoulou was called in by the government to perform a second autopsy on the two bodies. The first autopsy was conducted by state forensic pathologist Eleni Antoniou, who said injuries were consistent with wounds caused by someone who might feel hate towards the victim.

Speliopoulou had asked to be briefed on additional matters before she could form a complete picture and submit her own autopsy findings to investigators

Antoniou said the male victim was stabbed between 25 and 30 times in the chest, puncturing his heart and lungs and going into hemorrhagic shock. The female victim was stabbed 10 times in the neck, with knife wounds aimed at the carotid artery and jugular vein, also sending the victim into hemorrhagic shock.

Speliopoulou’s findings have yet to be made public, while the time of death for the victims came into question, at least initially, following both autopsies. According to local media, Speliopoulou had asked to be briefed with information on additional matters before she could form a complete picture and submit her findings to investigators.

Tzionis is reportedly seeking to have the order for the second autopsy null and void, essentially canceling Speliopoulou’s findings according to SigmaLive. Sources said the request was based on the fact that there had already been established causes of death, death certificates, and an order for Antoniou to submit her report.

The legal representative for Tzionis, expected to be his criminal defence attorney Andreas Anastasiou, is reportedly preparing to make the case that the post mortem report was signed by a different individual.

SigmaLive also pointed out that Tzionis’ claim to the Supreme Court is based on the argument that the Greek professor’s report amounted to “inadmissible testimony” which “violated the presumption of innocence and the right to a fair trial.”

Two other men are co-defendants in the case, Tzionis’ half brother Lefteris Solomou and Marios Hadjixenofondos. Both have denied all charges, while Tzionis, who had initially denied only burglary charges saying that “the house was open” later changed his plea to not guilty to all charges.

Sara Shams, the only female co-defendant and Tzionis’ ex girlfriend, pleaded guilty to burglary conspiracy charges last week and is expected to testify against Tzionis. Her sentencing will take place on Thursday.

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