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Paphos Property Developer Charged and Released

A PAPHOS property developer who was arrested last Friday and remanded in custody on suspicion of obtaining money from buyers with intent to defraud has been released two days early on medical grounds, sources said. Police would not confirm why the suspect had been released, only that he had been charged and that the investigation […]

A PAPHOS property developer who was arrested last Friday and remanded in custody on suspicion of obtaining money from buyers with intent to defraud has been released two days early on medical grounds, sources said.

Police would not confirm why the suspect had been released, only that he had been charged and that the investigation was ongoing.

Costas Papaioannou, owner of Costas Papaioannou Developers Ltd, was remanded in custody for five days by a Paphos Court on Friday, after a complaint was filed by lawyer Chrysa Christofi, who was representing four British families.

Speaking to the Cyprus Mail yesterday, Christofi said there was a possibility that two more clients would join the civil suit against the developer, even though she had not represented them in their purchase of the property.

However, the lawyer was quick to point out that Papaioannou’s alleged fraud was not indicative of all developers’ practices and should not deter investors from buying in Cyprus.

What this developer seems to have done is not what all developers do, which is why we want to quash it, because we wouldn’t want expatriate investors feeling unsafe from investing in Cyprus,” she said.

Christofi said that as long as buyers sought independent advice and didn’t use developers’ in-house solicitors, and the purchaser obeyed the rules and regulations which govern purchasing (such as having the contract stamped at the tax office and deposited at the land registry) , then there would be no problem.

We wouldn’t want foreign expatriates to lose confidence in our marketplace,” she added.

CID investigators believe that Papaioannou began two separate projects in 2004, in which he bought land in the Paphos villages of Yeroskipou and Chlorakas, planning to build apartment blocks.

The suspect is suspected of receiving over £250,000 to build apartments in the Paphos district that were never completed because he failed to receive building permission.

Papaioannou then allegedly fled the island and was only arrested after news of his return.

Copyright © Cyprus Mail 2006

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