Man remanded in custody over attempt to rape masseuse who refused his demands for sex

Magistrate expresses surprise at the fact of the continued existence of such massage parlours, saying that they were supposed to be regulated

Court (Photo: James Bianchi/mediatoday)
Court (Photo: James Bianchi/mediatoday)

A man from St. Julian's has been remanded in custody, accused of attempting to rape a Chinese masseuse who refused his demands for sex.

The 32-year-old Maltese defendant, who told the court he drove a rubbish collection truck for a living, was arraigned before magistrate Donatella Frendo Dimech on Monday, accused of attempted rape and committing a non-consensual sexual act on the woman, holding her against her will and injuring her as a means to committing those crimes, as well as subjecting the masseuse to degrading behaviour which had sexual connotations.

Further charges relating to threats and violently resisting arrest were also pressed.

Inspector Busuttil told the court that on September 6, the man had gone to a massage parlour in Pieta where he demanded “extra services” but was refused and thrown out of the shop.

He had then gone straight to another massage parlour, this time in Birkirkara, where the incident happened. At one point, the victim’s husband had also become involved in the matter and the police were called, the court was told.

The magistrate expressed surprise at the fact of the continued existence of such massage parlours, saying that they were supposed to be regulated now.

A plea of not guilty was filed.

Defence lawyer Roberta Bonello Felice informed the court that she would not be asking for bail at this stage, but requested a treatment order specifically for her client to receive psychological treatment. “He needs a lot of help,” said the lawyer, asking that he be evaluated upon his admission to pre-trial custody in prison.

Inspector Joseph Busuttil, prosecuting together with Inspector Andrew Agius Bonello, agreed with the defence about the importance of medically evaluating and treating the defendant, telling the court that the man was currently under round the clock supervision while in custody.

The court upheld the request and issued a strong recommendation aimed at the prison director, requesting that the necessary assessments be carried out without delay in order to establish what treatment the defendant requires and where he should be held, “both for his own protection as well as that of third parties.”

The magistrate also urged the defendant, who is understood to have a family, to keep matters in perspective and to look after his family, as well as his health.

Lawyer Cynthia Tomasuolo represented the Office of the Attorney General in the proceedings.