O'Dwyer assault sentencing delayed

Cyprus Mail

THE SENTENCING of three men in the Conor O’Dwyer assault case has been adjourned until Wednesday morning.

The case involves a developer from Paralimni, his son and an associate who were all convicted last week of the actual bodily harm of O’Dwyer in a dispute over property in the tiny eastern village of Frenaros.

Sentencing and mitigation had been due to be given yesterday morning at Larnaca District Court.

Having already spent five days in custody, developer Christoforos Karayiannas 55, his son Marios Karayiannas, 35, and Charalambous Ttigis, 31, were returned to police cells.

During the trial, the court heard how the men rammed O’Dwyer’s rental car at a busy junction in the eastern village of Frenaros, he was then subjected to a savage beating, including having his head stamped on – the attack left him in hospital for a week.

Meanwhile, the state has filed charges against O’Dwyer – following a complaint from the developer — over a website he created, http://www.lyingbuilder.com documenting the dispute with Karayiannas and his treatment.

According to the indictment, O’Dwyer faces seven charges – two for posting offensive messages “without reasonable cause”, two for posting harassing messages “without reasonable cause”, two for publishing personal data and one for “threatening violence”.

The latter, according to the details of the charge, refers to a threat the defendant allegedly made, to post recordings of his conversations with Marios Karayiannas on his website unless he “carried out an act, which he had no legal obligation to undertake”.

The indictment further adds that O’Dwyer’s goal was to insult the reputation of Marios Karayiannas and his company.

The alleged offences took place between January 1, 2006 and December 31, 2008.

Though not too serious, some of the charges do carry custodial sentences.

The state’s decision to prosecute O’Dwyer on these grounds has raised questions, especially after the attorney-general back in May decided not to prosecute anyone over death threats against a journalist posted on the Christofias-watch blog.

The timing of the state’s case has also raised eyebrows as it comes some four years after the alleged offences took place and during a private prosecution case O’Dwyer has initiated against the developer.

In fact, O’Dwyer, says he was served with the papers on the day he was due to testify in his private prosecution case.

The private prosecution case concerns the alleged unlawful sale of O’Dwyer’s house to a third party.

O’Dwyer filed a private prosecution case under Article 303 (A) of the penal code, after the state said it would not press charges against the developer citing lack of evidence.

However, the court has found there is a prima facie case. Closing arguments for that case are scheduled for November 26.

Three days earlier, O’Dwyer will have to appear before court to answer to the charges regarding his website.

It is understood that his defence will file a motion for the case to be thrown out because of the time that has lapsed and that it was frivolous, vexatious and an effort to intimidate O’Dwyer for pursuing his rights.

Nov 02, 2010