NICOSIA - A defence witness in the murder trial of Andis Hadjicostis denied Monday that he had been bribed to give evidence.
Former nightclub owner Nikos Tsielepas, now working for a family firm, said he had seen prosecution witness Theofanis Hadjigeorgiou hand over a bag of clothing to another man at noon on the day of the shooting, January 11, 2010.
He was giving evidence for the defence of the fourth defendant, Gregoris Xenophontos, whom the witness said he did not know. Xenophontos is the alleged gunman in the killing.
He told the court he called a defence lawyer after reading an article in Phileleleftheros newspaper on January 8, 2013 about a bag of clothes that had been found that was related to the murder case and decided to speak up in case his testimony would help shed light on the murder case.
Prosecutor Elena Kleopas suggested that the witness had lied about everything and that he was bribed to give his testimony.
She said that three years had passed since the murder and that it was suspicious that the witness had not spoken up over all these years. She also said that the witness should have called the police if he knew anything related to the murder and not the fourth defendant’s lawyer.
The prosecutor also added that, considering the witness’ poor financial situation, it came as no surprise that he would accept a bribe.
The witness denied the accusations.
Media tycoon, Andis Hadjicostis, 41, was gunned down outside his home in Engomi.
Investigators believe the motive for the alleged contract killing was both personal and financial.
Accused of murder are former TV personality presenter Elena Skordelli, her brother Tasos Krasopoulis, Xenophontos, and Andreas Gregoriou.
The trial continues tomorrow (Tuesday).