Cyprus Releases Country’s Longest Serving Convict

The longest-serving convict in Cyprus, Panayiotis Kafkaris, 72, who killed a man and his two children, was released on Friday after the parole board approved his request following repeated appeals.

Kafkaris has served 31 years after he was given three life sentences for the premeditated murder of businessman Panicos Michael, 45, and his two children aged 11 and 13, in Limassol in 1987.

During his trial he said he had been paid CYP £10,000 (€17,000) to carry out the hit. Kafkaris had placed a bomb under Michael’s vehicle, which he detonated, killing all three.

Kafkaris had been fighting his imprisonment in a variety of legal means including recourse to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) over the duration of his sentence.

In July 2015, he wrote a letter to the ECHR asking to be put to death unless his request for parole is re-examined.