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Cyprus Prison Chief Quits Over Police Drug Squad Chief Flap

December 23, 2022

NICOSIA – The head of Cyprus’ prison system, Anna Aristotelous and assistant Athena Demetriou quit in protest over a ruling that former police drug squad chief Michalis Katsounotos won’t be prosecuted after they said he conspired against them.

Katsounotos was exempted from any possible criminal liability “for reasons of public interest” in a case in which they accused him of colluding with a convict in the central prisons against Aristotelous, said In-Cyprus.

The Attorney General’s Office  ruled that Katsounotos may only be subject to disciplinary action by the Police, a decision reached after reviewing the findings of criminal investigator Achilleas Emilianides submitted earlier.

Emilianides was appointed to examine the case after Aristotelous went public in June, with her charge that Katsounotos had been conspiring with an inmate try and secure some kind of damaging footage of herself and Demetriou.

When the story broke, the text messages suggested Katsounotos had offered the convict a number of leniencies including a shot at parole, to try and convince him to obtain the footage but it wasn’t said what that might be.

The Legal Service’s statement also said: “We make it clear from the beginning that neither Mr. Emilianides, nor the officials of the Legal Service who studied the evidence before them, ruled or suggested that any corruption offence on the part of Mr. Katsunotos was established, in the sense that he did not intend to make a profit by any of his actions.”

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