Man charged over postal parcel of 13kg cannabis

The man told police that he was going to receive €1,000 to take the delivery and pass it on to an unknown third party

A man has been charged with drug trafficking after taking delivery of a mailed package containing 13kg of cannabis.

In a Friday afternoon sitting, Police Inspector Marshall Mallia arraigned Goran Dimovski before Magistrate Noel Bartolo

Lawyer Matthew Xuereb, defence counsel, asked the inspector to explain the circumstances of the man’s arrest.

Inspector Mallia told the court how on April 20, customs officers at Luqa intercepted a package addressed to Dimovski at his address in Marsaskala containing 13kg of cannabis grass. 

He told the police that he was going to receive €1,000 to take the delivery and pass it on to a third party whom he didn’t know.

Dimovski was arrested in Marsascala outside his residence. The delivery was made by a police officer dressed as a delivery man, he said, but did not carry out the arrest. Three other officers arrested the man, together with the inspector, he explained.

The inspector exhibited a number of supporting documents relating to the arrest.

The Macedonian accused, who told the court he worked as a delivery driver, pleaded not guilty to the charges. 

The defence made a request for bail, which was objected to by the prosecution on account of the fact that “we are dealing with a serious case of 13kg. The person is a foreign national who is also being charged with criminal association, as he was going to hand the drugs to a third party, which indicates a drug trafficking ring.

Xuereb argued that his client had no prior trouble with the police. He has a fixed address, lived in Malta for 10 years and had his family here. “He came to Malta to find stable employment, not to abscond.” The evidence is expected to be a list of officers involved in the controlled delivery. 

Liberty was the rule, not the exception, the lawyer said. The prosecution hadn’t produced any arguments regarding the possibility of the accused tampering with evidence, Xuereb submitted.

The court, after hearing the submissions on bail, ruled to reject the bail request, stating that it considered that there was a possibility of the accused tampering with evidence.

The court moved on to consider to the prosecution’s request for a freezing order over the man’s assets. The defence did not object to the request, but requested that the amount stipulated by law be made available to the accused.