LIMASSOL police have launched a second investigation into a 50-year-old man awaiting trial on charges of fraud, after a 63-year-old pensioner reported he had been swindled out of €5.5 million by the same Limassol contractor.
When Louis Sideras, a repatriated British Cypriot, heard that Andreas Sophocleous was awaiting trial on charges of obtaining money under false pretences, he informed police that he too was a victim of alleged fraud. He accused the 50-year-old of scamming him out of €5.5m.
According to Sideras, the 50-year-old acted as a go-between for Turkish Cypriots living in Australia, Canada and the Netherlands, offering to sell him plots of their land in the Limassol district between June and September of last year.
The pensioner claimed that Sophocleous had presented him with fake documents showing he had power of attorney and title deeds for Turkish Cypriot properties in Polemidia, Zygi, Paramythas, Mesa Yitonias, Pentakomou and Mari with the intention of selling them to him.
Sideras gave over five million euros for the properties, only to find that some of them did not exist. He was alerted to the alleged scam after hearing that Sophocleous was currently in Nicosia Central Prisons, awaiting trial for the charge of obtaining money under false pretences.
According to state broadcaster, CyBC, Sophocleous was arrested last month along with two relatives after a Land Registry official charged him with fraudulently extracting from him over €200,000 for the purchase of Turkish Cypriot properties. His trial date is set for February 22.
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