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By Peter Stevenson MEMBERS of Volunteer Doctors Cyprus have treated around 350 people at their free clinic in Nicosia since it opened three months ago, while two more, one in Paphos and one in Polis are due to open today. Limassol also has a free clinic, which was opened only last month, and plans have been drawn ...
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Cyprus Internet Directory [ ‘I didn’t want him to live with cursed money’ ]

‘I didn’t want him to live with cursed money’

Alexia Saoulli

THE GIRLFRIEND of the chief prosecution witness in the ongoing murder trial of Sigma boss Andis Hadjicostis said yesterday she had not ratted out her partner, because he was “her man”.

Yiota Pendodji, girlfriend of Fanos Hadjigeorgiou who gave up his friends in exchange for immunity from prosecution, told the Nicosia Assize Court that she had also kept quiet out of fear.

“Those involved killed someone,” she said during her cross-examination by defence lawyer Michalis Pikis.

Pendodji was referring to the 2010 murder of Hadjicostis and her partner’s involvement in it. Hadjigeorgiou has confessed he was driving the getaway motorbike but has pinned the shooting on defendant Gregoris Xenofontos.

Pendodji said that when Hadjigeorgiou initially confessed to his involvement in Hadjicostis’ murder she couldn’t bear to look at him. However following her partner’s remorse and his decision to tell the truth, she decided to stay with him.

“I didn’t want him to live with cursed money,” she added.

Pikis asserted the young woman was lying for Hadjigeorgiou and suggested she and he had colluded to give the same statement. Pendodji denied this was the case and said that when her partner had decided to come clean she felt a huge weight lift from her shoulders. She added that she had never had a chance to talk to him following his confession as he’d been arrested.

The young woman accepted that she had told a police a few lies to cover for Hadjigeorgiou but that did not mean that she couldn’t tell the truth.

Pikis said Hadjigeorgiou had never regretted his actions but only confessed in exchange for his immunity. Again Pendodji defended her partner and said he had felt guilty when he realised his mistake which in turn made him face his friends.

“These people killed someone. No one can know if they will kill him,” she said.

During her cross-examination the witness told the court that she didn’t know what her partner’s work involved but said that he had installed a closed circuit camera in his apartment after an attempt had been made on the life of his friend, Andreas Gregoriou.

Gregoriou survived a car bomb on Christmas day 2009. Although he was recuperating in hospital at the time of Hadjicostis’ murder he has been implicated as one of the orchestrators of the crime.

Pendodji maintained Hadjigeorgiou had not been afraid for his life but that “when people harm someone you hang out with, you might think they might harm you”.

She said she had initially lied to police that Hadjigeorgiou had never left the house on the day of the murder because she couldn’t imagine that he would be involved and because he had an open case against him for poaching. She also said that when police arrived on her doorstep looking for her partner’s motorbike she never once considered he could have something to do with Hadjicostis’ murder and instead assumed people were trying to get him into trouble.

Pikis’ cross-examination was cut short after the break because Xenofontos’ defence lawyer, Roverto Vrahimi, complained to the court he could no longer represent his client, Xenofontos, because police had forbidden their communication which prevented him from taking instructions from Xenofontos. The court adjourned until today so as to allow Vrahimi access to his client.

Hadjicostis was shot at point blank range outside his home on the night of January 11, 2010. Four people stand accused of his murder including former media presenter Elena Skordelli, her brother Tasos Krasopoulis, Gregoriou, and Xenofontos. All four were implicated following Hadjigeorgiou’s full confession which he gave in exchange for immunity from prosecution and entry into the witness protection programme.

(Source: Cyprus Mail)
Copyright © Cyprus Mail 2008 Please contact Cyprus Mail for the copyright terms of this article.

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