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New Cyprus Property

As at Jan 2010  courtesy of the Cyprus Mail

 THE COURT of Appeal has handed down its judgment in the case of Apostolides v Orams. The Court of Appeal has decided in favour of Meletis Apostolides, a statement from his lawyers said. 

A Major court ruling came from the European Court of Justice (ECJ) and it’s a huge blow to English expats living in the northern part of Cyprus.

The ECJ ruling has ordered British expat couple David and Linda Orams to demolish a house they had built on the Lapithos property of Greek Cypriot refugee Meletis Apostolides.

Anyone that owns a property in the North that was originally owned by a Greek Cypriot (prior to the war) may be facing a similar fate. This case will also have huge ramifications on the peace talks.

We have always stressed the huge risks involved buying in the North…

This ruling may eventually lead to the right for all Greek Cypriots to take back their illegally occupied homes. It’s important to note that this whole issue applies to anyone that buys land too. We cannot stress this more highly, we know that buying in the North is cheap…but there is a huge risk.

We think it’s important to mention that buying a property in the Republic of Cyprus (South) does not have the same issues. All property & land that was owned by Turkish Cypriots before the war has been maintained by the government and has never been sold onto a third party.

Buying in the Republic of Cyprus is safe and your title is registered at the land registry.

Should you want to find out more, most of the UK newspapers are covering the story Cherie Blair is the solicitor for the Orams which is news

The Foreign Office warns anyone planning to buy property in the Turkish-Cypriot state, which is recognised only by Turkey, that they could face legal action in Cyprus and elsewhere in the EU, including Britain.

Its website says: 'The European Court of Human Rights has ruled in a number of cases that owners of property in northern Cyprus see more here  

The present appeal is final, it added, and a further appeal to the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom is not permitted.
The judgment provides that the Cyprus judgments be registered and enforced in the UK. The Cyprus Court had made a number of orders against David Orams and Linda Orams, regarding land in Lapithos belonging to Apostolides. In particular, the Cyprus Court ordered that the Orams should:
-           Cease trespassing on the land belonging to Apostolides;
-           Deliver up possession of the land to Apostolides;
-           Pay ‘mesne profits’ (effectively, rent) to  Apostolides in respect of the period of their occupation;
-           Knock down the villa and fencing they had built on the land; and
-           Pay certain sums in respect of Apostolides’s costs of the proceedings.
The Orams will also be ordered to pay the legal fees incurred by Apostolides, regarding the London and Luxembourg proceedings.
“This judgment has determined in a final way that the legal rights of displaced Cypriots against trespassers, as determined by the Courts of the Republic of Cyprus, can be enforced in the United Kingdom,” said the statement from lawyer Constantis Candounas. 
“Mr. Apostolides feels totally satisfied that the European institutions have safeguarded his right to have his human rights to property enforced throughout the Union. He had placed his trust in British Justice and has never felt that this was misplaced.”
Candounas said the ruling is expected to act as a future deterrent for speculators in stolen Cypriot properties, as well as those willing to take small or bigger risks. 
“The way is now open for all Greek Cypriots whose properties have been usurped by other EU nationals, to take legal action and enforce Cyprus judgments against such trespassers in the United Kingdom and other EU countries,” his statement said.