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INTRODUCTION

The criminal legal system of the Republic of Cyprus has been effective since 1928 and has come to be "respected and esteemed as a keystone of fairness". Criminal justice and procedure are in line with the fundamental civil rights and liberties established in the Constitution of Cyprus. Criminal law in Cyprus reflects to a large degree the prevalent principles and major offenses of the English Common Law, with great influence from the French Penal Code and the continental European Criminal systems. The accusatorial system of criminal justice is similar in nature to the one adopted by Common Law.

Suspects Rights

In Cyprus, the rights of suspects derive from various sources. Firstly, such rights are provided for by the Constitution, which is the highest authority and, as such, may not be deviated from. Part II (articles 6 – 35 ), safeguards fundamental human rights and so, inter alia, provides for the rights of suspects. According to Article 35, " the legislative, executive and judicial authorities of the Republic shall be bound to secure, within the limits of their respective competence, the efficient application of the provisions of this Part.

Furthermore, rights of suspects are protected by the Criminal Procedure Law Cap. 155, which introduced the English criminal procedure code to the Cyprus legal system and , finally, since 2005, extensive protection of the rights of suspects is provided for by the law "Rights of Persons under Arrest and Detention Law‟ (N. 163(I)/2005), which is separated in four parts.

a) Rights relating to arrest

The first part deals with rights in relation to arrest of a Suspect. In this Part provided, inter alia, the immediate rights of the arrested person to a lawyer of his choice and with relatives or if he is a foreigner to the embassy. This right should be notified immediately arrested by the police.

The immediate rights when a person is arrested by a Police member,is to be informed immediately after his/her arrest in a language that is understood in this for-

(a) the reasons for the arrest or detention and the offense alleged or accused of having committed,

(b) the right of access to a lawyer,

(c) any right to free legal assistance and the conditions for providing such assistance,

(d) the right to interpretation and translation,

(e) the right to silence,

(f) Any person who is arrested by a member of the Police shall immediately after his arrest has the right to communicate in person or by phone

  • with a lawyer of his choice without the presence of any other person,
  • in the presence of State Police, any relative or other person of his choice and where a person under eighteen years of age with any of their parents or guardians, to inform them about the arrest or detention and the police station or detention facility or the intended detention, as appropriate.

(g) the place of detention or the intended detention:

b) Rights of the suspect during detention

The Second part of the Law ensures and provides the rights of the suspect, during his/her arrest and custody. These rights provided to the arrested person to have confidential interviews with his/her lawyer for his/her defense, to send and receive letters, have meetings with relatives, not subjected to torture or to inhuman treatment and generally to be treated with dignity.

Also, during the custody, the arrested have the right for medical examination and treatment. All rights provided, in the Law N.163 (I) / 2005, for the detainees should be recorded on a list, which should be posted at each cell to inform this rights.

c) Criminal offenses committed in relation to unconstitutional deprivation of a person‟s liberty

The Third part of the Law provides the rights, for criminal offenses in relation to deprivation of individual liberty by members of the Police in violation of constitutional provisions, and failure to inform the arrested person of the reasons for his arrest.

d) Disciplinary and criminal offenses for violation of the rights envisa ged in this Law

The Fourth part deals with criminal and disciplinary offenses and remedies for violation of rights provided by this Law, by members of the Police.

 

By attending the police station with one of our specialist lawyers we will be able to obtain information about the investigation, the reasons why you are being interviewed, explain to you the process, advise you about the options that you have and ensure that you are treated fairly throughout the proceedings.

Sometimes the best advice is to decline to answer questions, at least until further information is provided as to the case against you; or alternatively it may be better to produce a written statement setting out your case in a clear and structured way. Even if you decide to answer questions, you will want to think carefully in advance about the issues with which you will have to deal.

So if you been arrested or called to attend at the Police for a statement, know your rights and call immediately to our Firm, so an attorney will come right away with you and consult you, before it' s to late. Because as they say "anything you say can be used against you at the Court"

Furthermore our Firm provides the highest quality service and advocacy on the full range of criminal law matters. We appear before all District Courts of Cyprus, undertaking any type of criminal case, from the simplest to the most complex. Apart from general crime law, our Firm obtain vast experience acting on behalf of individuals and companies being investigated our accused for business crime.

There is a vast array of acts that comprise a criminal wrong and are punishable by Cyprus' Courts, which our Firm can handle cases such as:

  • violent crime
  • assault
  • theft
  • drug trafficking and possession
  • crimes related to property
  • road traffic offence
  • fraud
  • money laundering
  • regulatory offenses
  • bounced checks

Punishments may vary from a fine, suspended sentence, home monitoring, probation and even imprisonment.

Our Firm can provide you the best defense you can have.

 

Legal Aid in Criminal Law

Legal Aid is available to all persons, resident or non-resident in Cyprus provided they pass a certain criteria. If an individual or family is unable to cover legal assistance and costs, due to low or no financial income, or paying for legal assistance and costs will put themselves or their family in danger without basic human needs, Legal Aid can be sought.

Legal Aid is primarily used in regards to Criminal Law, Family Law and Civil and Criminal cases in breach of human rights.

Legal Aid will cover Lawyers Services and Court procedures including any Appeals. If Legal Aid is denied, an appeal can be made against the decision.

Our Firm is offering their services within the Legal Aid sector will be provided and it is up to the individual to chooses one of our Attorneys to handle his/her case.

The person claiming Legal Aid will need to provide all their financial information and if or once Legal Aid has been granted, a certificate will be issued stating free Legal Aid has been awarded to the named person.

If however, your financial situation changes and more finance is available to you, your rights to Free Legal Aid will be withdrawn and you will be liable for fees and costs.

We are established in all areas of law and we can assist you in any matter that should arise and also help you obtain Legal Aid should your circumstances permit this course of action.

 

Private Prosecutions

A private prosecution is a criminal proceeding initiated by an individual or private organization instead of by a public prosecutor who represents the Police. In some cases, especially for Felonies, the private prosecutor must seek the consent of the Attorney General of Cyprus, before the commencement of proceedings.

Private prosecutions are permitted in Cyprus offen for cases such as:

  • Fraud by false representation
  • Fraud by failing to disclose information
  • Bounced checks

So being a victim of crime is undoubtedly a difficult and stressful experience. Whether you are an individual who has been the victim of a crime or representing an organization which has suffered loss further to fraud or other business related crime, the effects can be very damaging.

Our Firm is experienced in helping you deal with the practical effects of having been a victim of crime whilst providing you with clear advice as to the options available to you.

 

For more information please contact us at +357 22 251726, +357 22 011431 or email us with your questions.

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Get in Touch

  • Phone: + 357 22 251726 + 357 22 011431 Fax: + 357 22 770543
  • Email: info@tsinarelis-associates.com
  • Address: 19 Aryrokastrou street, 1100, Ayios Andreas, Nicosia, Cyprus