Cyprus property developers claim expat tried blackmail

Cyprus Mail

THE PARALIMNI Cyprus property developers at the centre of a police assault investigation involving a British home buyer yesterday countered the allegation by accusing him of blackmail.

Conor O’Dwyer, 38, spent six days in Larnaca hospital last week after being allegedly assaulted by the father and son developers, who were later arrested and held in police custody for four days.

They were released on Monday pending further investigations.

It was the second time in less than two years that the two men had been arrested for allegedly assaulting O’Dwyer. The earlier charges were dropped.

O’Dwyer has widely publicised the details of his property dispute with the developers on YouTube and on the website

The dispute centres on the cancellation of his contract by the property developers some half way through payment, even though the house in Frenaros was already registered in his name at the land registry.

O’Dwyer had complained because he said the developers were not sticking to the original plans he was paying for. They then cancelled the contact accusing him of not paying the next instalment. The developers then sold the house to someone else, telling O’ Dwyer they were keeping his £75,000 sterling for damages.

Yesterday on their website, Karayiannas Developers and Constructors said O’Dwyer’s claims that they had misled him into purchasing the property were defamatory.

Under a link entitled “The Karayiannas saga… To find out more about the true events…“, a statement from the developers claimed that O’Dwyer had masterminded a plan to extort a newer more expensive property and exorbitant damages from the company.

Karayiannas said the British buyer had ignored reminders to pay the next instalment for the property, so they cancelled the contract as a last resort.

After the cancellation of the contract, Mr. O’Dwyer set his plan in motion seeking for his revenge. A revenge originating from the fact that the value of the house he would have bought increased due to the current value housing boom,” said the statement.

The alleged plan involved O’Dwyer secretly taping a conversation with Marios Karayiannas and later using that tape recording as a threat to blackmail the company for “a private villa worth £400,000 and £100,000 in cash“, failing which he would create a website “defaming the company in such ways as to cause it great financial losses“.

He was in plain and simple words blackmailing his way into a luxury villa and cash in hand,” the statement said.

But the company had “failed to adhere to his blackmail requests“.

O’Dwyer says he repeatedly attempted to make the contested payment, having decided to keep the house despite the differences between the original plan and the finished product, but claims Karayiannas refused to take the due payment, deciding, O’ Dwyer said, that he was giving them too much hassle over the terms of the contract.

After Karayiannas sent him a letter in March 2006 cancelling the contract, they kept refusing the payment. The final time O’Dwyer tried to send payment was through a court server, he said.

The same month Karayiannas’ lawyers sent him a letter – published on his website – saying: “As you committed essential breaches of your contract, you are hereby notified that they [Karayiannas] cancel the said agreement and retain the money already paid, towards damages.”

Another letter a month later said: “Even if for any reason in the end of the day it is decided that they [Karayianas] had no legal ground to cancel it due to your behaviour, they do not want you on their property and they hereby notify you that they are not willing to complete the house and deliver it to you.

The deal is over and they will never ever deliver to you your house.

On Tuesday evening, O’Dwyer gave a full statement to police about the January 14 incident in Frenaros, which saw the Briton end up in hospital.

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