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No bail for man who posted Facebook death threats to police officers

A syrian man, 43, was charged with misuse of electronic communications equipment and threatening inspector Roderick Agius

matthew_agius
Matthew Agius
8 November 2017, 12:00pm
A Syrian man has been remanded in custody after being accused of repeatedly posting death threats, aimed at individual police officials, on Facebook. 

The 43-year-old Paola resident, who cannot be named by order of the court, was arraigned before magistrate Claire Stafrace Zammit this morning, charged with misuse of electronic communications equipment and threatening police Inspector Roderick Agius. 

The charges come just six days after the man was released on bail, after being arrested for making Facebook death threats directed at Superintendent Anthony Cassar and Inspector Hubert Cini.

One the Facebook posts in question (Photo: Facebook)
One the Facebook posts in question (Photo: Facebook)
Inspector Hubert Cini, prosecuting, explained how the accused, who appeared in court still wearing his tartan bed slippers, was arrested after he made the second threat on Sunday. He exhibited seven pages of Facebook posts made by the man.

The man, who may be suffering from mental illness, is understood to use three Facebook profiles, in two of which he poses as a female.

Defence lawyer Benjamin Valenzia entered a plea of not guilty on the man’s behalf and requested bail, which was opposed by the prosecution on the grounds that he had been charged with similar offences less than a week ago. 

“A clear picture must be given that these things are not allowed to happen with the police,” argued Cini. The accused could be treated for any psychiatric conditions while in custody, he added.

The court turned down the bail request, instead ordering the man be remanded at the Forensic Unit at Mount Carmel Hospital, where a psychological evaluation would assess his state of mental health.

It also ordered a ban on the publication of the name of the accused until the evaluation is carried out.

matthew_agius
Court reporter Matthew Agius is a Legal Procurator and Commissioner for Oaths. Prior to re...