Man accused of stealing sister's jewellery, released on bail

The defence lawyer divulged that the accused has a substance abuse problem

(File Photo)
(File Photo)

A man accused of stealing jewellery from his sister, wept in the dock as he was charged with aggravated theft this morning.

Before magistrate Rachel Montebello, 24-year-old Redeemer Cauchi of Marsa, was charged with theft, aggravated by the value and the person robbed.

Cauchi was accused of stealing jewellery belonging to his sister, after the latter filed a police report, having found items of jewellery missing.

The man entered a plea of not guilty and his lawyer Arthur Azzopardi, requested bail.

The prosecuting officer, inspector Paul Camilleri, objected to bail as the accused lived with his victim. An alternative address a few streets away was provided.

Azzopardi told magistrate Montebello that he has known Cauchi for some time, explaining that the accused was only a troublemaker when drugs are in play and then only with his family.  “He’s a good lad, but when he takes drugs, he slips up,” said the lawyer.

“He cannot always rely on his family to forgive him,” noted the court, as the defence agreed.

A supervision order was suggested.

Azzopardi argued for the man’s release whilst under strict supervision. “I am not making request for bail in a vacuum but am also requesting a temporary order of supervision. The prosecuting official was precise and loyal to the truth, said the lawyer. There is a substance abuse problem,” said the lawyer.

The lawyer added that according to the collective agreement governing industrial relations with the man’s employer, if held on remand or in prison he will be fired. “We are risking causing more damage,” Azzopardi said, pointing out that if he has no job, the cycle of reoffending will turn more rapidly.

The lawyer added that the legislator had wisely required a criminal complaint in cases of charges on the complaint of family members, reminding that this could be withdrawn at any stage.

The court released Cauchi on bail against a deposit of €400 and a personal guarantee of €3000.