Couple tears up as man escapes prison for travelling with false passport

A man accused of travelling with a false passport was sentenced to 18 months in prison suspended for three years

A couple broke down in tears when the duty magistrate pronounced that the accused would escape an effective prison sentence after he was caught travelling with a false passport. 

Police were informed on Tuesday by Luqa International Airport security that a young man residing in Malta would be returned from the international airport in Rome after he was found in possession of documents that did not belong to him.

“He left Malta using false documents. They belonged to a friend of his. He admitted to the police that he used his friend’s documents to travel for a two-day holiday to Italy,” the prosecuting officer Darren Buhagiar told the court, adding that the accused had cooperated with police.

The man’s partner was already fighting tears as she heard her partner plead guilty.

The prosecution and defence lawyer Andrew Grima approached the bench and spoke to magistrate Gabriella Vella out of earshot of the press.

The man was found guilty by the court and was sentenced to 18 months in prison suspended for three years. 

“What you did was wrong but I understand why you would do it. You did not have the willingness to commit a crime and have done so out of a lack of due consideration,” the court said. 

The accused was warned that if he commits another offence in three years, he would face an effective prison sentence. 

The accused left the courtroom as his partner clutched him from his sleeve, relieved. They both shared tears in the hallway.