American DNA expert to appear as witness in Crete robberies appeal
An American DNA expert is expected to appear as a witness in the appeal trial of an Albanian man scheduled to take place on the island of Crete on December 4.
Dr Greg Hampikian is expected to attend the trial of Mark Marku who was convicted on various charges, including seven armed robberies that took place in Crete in 2010. Dr Hampikian, a DNA expert from the Idaho Innocence Project, is expected to testify that a report claiming to have found the defendant’s DNA on a pair of rubber gloves is unreliable and misleading and does not prove Marku’s involvement.
Marku’s Irish wife, Julie Marku, a preschool teacher from Carlow, and her parents, Bill and Phyl O’Reilly, believe the trial was a miscarriage of justice.
They claim Marku was in Ireland when three of the seven armed robberies occurred and has alibis, flight records and affidavits to prove it. They also claim that the prosecution failed to provide any evidence for 11 of the 16 charges brought against him.
The family also alleges that while three witnesses identified Marku by face and body type in three separate robberies at the trial, all of the witnesses attested that the perpetrators wore masks making it impossible to identify them by their facial features.
Marku, along with seven Albanian co-defendants, was sentenced to 18 years behind bars.