Father and son to be charged over destruction of Qormi monument

Qormi's Salib tad-Dejma was destroyed last September, leaving residents and politicians fuming

A father and son from Luqa are to be charged with destroying Qormi’s Salib tad-Dejma.

The men, 48 and 23 years old respectively, were to be arraigned by Police Inspectors Joe Mercieca and Stacy Attard on charges of damaging cultural property and harming a monument. The father alone was to be accused of filing a false report to the police about the incident.

The historic cross, hundreds of years old, was a meeting point for militia and a place where public proclamations and important orders were read out. It was destroyed by vandals on 21 September.

But before the case was called before Magistrate Joe Mifsud this morning, the prosecution declared that it would be withdrawing the charges under new legal dispositions which state that the Attorney General is to institute proceedings for such crimes.

Legal Notice 367 of 2021, which came into force recently, states that “…the Executive Police shall not on or after the 1stOctober 2021, institute or pursue any prosecution for the crimes listed…in the absence of a decision to prosecute having been taken by the Attorney General.”

The prosecution withdrew the charges accordingly.

Lawyer Shazoo Ghaznavi is representing the father, while lawyers Franco Debono and Francesca Zarb are appearing for the son.