A court in Cyprus has sentenced an army captain to life for the murder of seven women and girls, including four from the Philippines.
Nicholas Metaxas had pleaded guilty to the premeditated murder and kidnapping of the foreign women and girls. He also apologised to the families of his victims for the “unjust pain” he had caused.
Handing down seven life sentences, the three-judge panel said he had deliberately targeted the most “defenceless” of victims.
The judges said Metaxas “didn’t even hesitate to kill children” over the two-and-a-half years he sought out his adult victims through online dating networks.
Five life terms will run consecutively, while two will run concurrently. The judges said there could be no mitigating circumstances in such a case.
Reading from a prepared statement, Metaxas said he didn’t “have any clear answers” about why he committed the killings.
The 35-year-old killed four Filipino women and the daughter of one of them, as well as a Nepalese woman and a Romanian mother and her daughter.
“I cannot go back in time and undo what I have done,” he told a packed courtroom yesterday (Monday, June 24).
The case came to light on April 14 when the decomposing body of Mary Rose Tiburcio, 38, a Filipina, was found in a flooded mineshaft.
Four days later, the body of 28-year-old Arian Palanas Lozano, also from the Philippines, was retrieved from the same shaft.
Metaxas became a suspect after police examined the online communications of the two women.
At first, Metaxas refused to cooperate with investigators. However, as the evidence mounted, he signed a 10-page confession to the seven killings.
His other victims were Romanian Livia Florentina Bunea, 36, and her eight-year-old daughter Elena Natalia; Maricar Valtez Arquiola, 31, from the Philippines; Ashita Khadka Bista, from Nepal; and Tiburcio’s daughter, Sierra Grace.