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North Myrtle Beach man begins prison sentence in lewd act case

A North Myrtle Beach businessman reported to prison Wednesday afternoon to begin serving a two year prison sentence, according to authorities.

Panteleimon N. Spirakis, 49, was booked into J. Reuben Long Detention Center at 12:24 p.m. Wednesday to begin serving his sentence, according to jail records.

Spirakis entered an Alford plea on Sept. 7 to lewd act on a minor and Circuit Court Judge Larry Hyman sentenced him to five years in prison, but suspended that sentence if he serves two years in prison and five years on probation, court records showed.

In an Alford plea, the defendant does not admit guilt, but acknowledges a jury would likely convict based on the evidence.

Assistant Solicitor Candice Lively said Hyman allowed Spirakis take care of some business and ordered him to report to jail in 30 days after the plea hearing.

Police arrested and charged Spirakis after his ex-girlfriend’s daughter told police she was sexually assaulted by him for about three years that began in 2005.

Hyman also ordered Spirakis to have no contact with the victim after he is released from prison, undergo counseling and register a sex offender

At the time of his arrest in November 2008, police said the girl, who was 16, told them Spirakis threatened her with a knife to prevent her from telling anyone that he made her undress, fondled her breast and may have drugged her, according to a police report.The girl also said Spirakis made video recordings and took pictures of her. The girl’s mother learned of the incidents and reported it to police.