[WATCH] Police say Theuma said wounds were self-inflicted, chief witness in stable condition

Police have told reporters that stabbing injuries sustained by Melvin Theuma were self-inflicted, despite accounts of the rare event of such wounds in the course of an attempted suicide

Commissioner of Police Angelo Gafà told reporters at a 9:30am press conference on Wednesday that injuries sustained by Melvin Theuma, the middleman in the Daphne Caruana Galizia assassination, were self-inflicted.

Theuma was found at his Swieqi home on Triq is-Sirk with a knife in his right hand and multiple injuries below the kidneys, neck and a wrist. Gafà said some of the injuries were deep.

Gafà said the indications were that the injuries were self-inflicted, despite accounts of the rare event of such self-inflicted stabbing in the course of an attempted suicide.

Inspector Keith Arnaud also said he had spoken to Theuma, who told him that the wounds had been his own doing and that he was alone when it happened – the claim was made before other paramedics.

Theuma is now in a stable condition.

Initially, Theuma’s residence was guarded by three police officers. Two were stationed outside, one in the basement garage on the back of the house, the other out in front. A third officer was stationed inside the house. But on request of his lawyers, the third close-contact police officer was removed.

Gafà said there were no so-called ‘defensive wounds’ and the blood splatter was also indicative of self-injury. “There were no reports of struggle and no one heard any commotion,” Gafà said.

There is no CCTV camera at the block of flats where Theuma lived in Swieqi. Investigations are ongoing, with district police leading investigations.

Theuma lived with his partner, son and partner’s mother. They had left the house at 7:20pm and returned at 9:20pm. Gafà said it was customary for the family to leave the house at this hour.

Gafà said all evidence, including documents on site, had been taken by the police for further investigation, including Theuma’s and his partner’s mobile phone.

Gafà said this was Theuma’s first attempted suicide. He had not previously indicated suicidal thoughts, the Commissioner said. No suicide note or drugs were found on site.

He said Arnaud was kept up to date with all Theuma’s movements, and that Theuma’s lawyer Kathleen Grima had called him up to offer him support ahead of a big day in court.

Gafà said that investigations were underway which were also part of the main investigation, and that this has always been a joint Europol-Malta investigation. “We are one with Europol,” he said.

Theuma, who turned State’s evidence to testify against Yorgen Fenech, the alleged mastermind in the assassination, was due to appear in court today in an important sitting for the Fenech defence to counter-examine him.

Police said the first indications are that Theuma, found suffering from serious wounds, had harmed himself; MaltaToday was told Theuma presented himslef with stab wounds down to trachea and vocal cords, and with multiple wounds to his abdomen.

A lawyer for Theuma informed police he was unable to make contact with his client. The police officer guarding the Theuma residence entered the house together with Theuma’s wife at the moment he was alerted by police, and found Theuma suffering from the wounds.


A magisterial inquiry has been launched. Inspectors Keith Arnaud and Kurt Zahra, who are investigating the Caruana Galizia assassination, were on site.

Theuma was granted a presidential pardon to turn State’s evidence in December 2019, when he was arrested on a money laundering charge and later confessed to his role in the assassination.