Degiorgio brothers claim ‘inhuman and degrading’ prison treatment after solitary confinement

Daphne Caruana Galizia murder suspects George and Alfred Degiorgio say they were placed in solitary confinement for no fault of their own and call on prison director to reverse his decision

The Degiorgio brothers were placed in solitary confinement and are claiming 'inhuman and degrading' treatment
The Degiorgio brothers were placed in solitary confinement and are claiming 'inhuman and degrading' treatment

Murder suspects George and Alfred Degiorgio are claiming “inhuman and degrading” treatment in prison after they were placed in solitary confinement over an incident they were involved in.

The brothers, who are being held in Division 5 at the Corradino Correctional Facility, said in a judicial letter filed this morning that they were being punished unjustly for an incident caused by another inmate.

The formal letter signed by their lawyer William Cuschieri, calls on the prison director to end what they claim is inhuman and degrading treatment or else face legal action.

The Degiorgios are being locked up in their cells for 26 consecutive hours and allowed out for a brief period, only to be locked up again for 26 hours straight. They said the prison director did not inform them how long this “punishment” would last.

The brothers have been charged with the murder of journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia and are being held on preventive arrest pending their trial.

The Degiorgios explained that on 3 July, an inmate who had been transferred to their division, got into a fight with them. The brothers insisted that footage from inside Division 5 amply confirms that they did not instigate the fight and this had also been recognised by CCF officers.

However, they claimed that the prison director took the decision to place them in solitary confinement nonetheless. They also claimed the decision was retribution linked to information they have on a former minister and a sitting minister.

“This behaviour by the director constitutes inhuman and degrading treatment and is one out of a series of hostile actions against the brothers after they asked for a presidential pardon in exchange for information on the involvement of former minister Chris Cardona in the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia and the involvement of Minister Carmelo Abela in series crimes,” the judicial letter read.

The brothers insisted that irrespective of the discretion afforded at law to the prison director, he can never treat prisoners in a way that is unacceptable in a democratic society.

“The inhuman and degrading treatment against the brothers should stop immediately and if this does not happen today they will take legal steps against you,” the letter warned.

The judicial letter was notified to the prison director and the Attorney General.