San Gwann man charged after altercation

Man charged with slightly injuring another individual, breaching the peace, breaching a probation order and failing to abide by bail conditions

File Photo
File Photo

A man from San Gwann was remanded in custody this morning after being accused of injuring another man who allegedly intervened in an argument.

Inspector Neil G. Caruana arraigned Paul Spagnol, 54, from San Gwann before magistrate Doreen Clarke. Spagnol was charged with slightly injuring a man, breaching the peace, breaching a probation order and failing to abide by bail conditions imposed over another alleged crime. 

No further details of the incident emerged in court today.

Spagnol pleaded not guilty to the charges. His lawyer, Ishmael Psaila, requested bail.

Inspector Caruana objected to the request, as there were witnesses yet to testify. The accused had a “substantial” criminal record, said the inspector. Moreover, he was already charged with breaching his bail conditions and was under probation.

Psaila conceded that the man’s criminal record “is what it is” noting that his client had even spent time behind bars, but said that the charges he was facing today were minor and that the man could have been arraigned by summons, not arrest.

“This was a person who was attacked. He answered, cooperated and mentioned people under interrogation,” pointed out the lawyer.

“This was a person who had a conversation which escalated a bit, another person – who the accused to this day doesn’t know- intervened and an altercation ensued,” said Psaila.

The alleged victim is also due to be arraigned, by summons, said the lawyer, adding that therefore the potential issue of tampering with evidence doesn’t apply and he could be released on bail.

Although he had a colourful criminal record, his lawyer said, “we cannot rest on his criminal record when the facts emerged that he was living his life as he should have when Mr.X -the identity of whom we don't yet know, attacked and robbed him and he ended up under arrest.”

The police had searched Spagnol’s property and found a jack in his car, accusing him of keeping it as a weapon, the lawyer alleged. “At first glance the charges look justified, but we have to dig a little bit more.”

“Did he really breach bail? He didn’t fail to sign his bail book or try to abscond, this is a person who was attacked.”

The court, however, having considered the submissions on bail, denied bail on account of the crimes with which the accused is charged, his character and criminal record, as well as the fear of him tampering with evidence.

The court ordered the acts to be assigned according to law.