Twins charged over rampage at parents’ house after being refused money for drugs

Accused’s father says he spent ‘over a million euros’ on his sons’ drug habit over the years

Cocaine (File photo)
Cocaine (File photo)

Two 39-year-old brothers from Qormi were remanded in custody on Monday after they were charged with threatening their parents and trashing their house when they were denied money to feed their drug habits.

Inspector Christian Cauchi arraigned the twin brothers before magistrate Lara Lanfranco, accusing them of using violence, including moral violence to compel their parents to give them money. One of the brothers was also charged with having done so using a firearm.

The pair were also charged with having knowingly caused their elderly parents to endure mental suffering and causing them to fear violence, one of them with a firearm, as well as destroying furniture at their parents’ house and threatening them.

The defendant who had allegedly threatened his parents with the firearm was also accused of violently resisting a police officer and threatening him while the officer had been acting in the line of duty and slightly injuring the officer.

He was further charged with having committed an offence during the operative period of a suspended sentence.

Both twins were also charged with breaching a treatment order they had been placed under in other proceedings.

Inspector Cauchi told the court that on March 17, the defendants’ parents had visited the Domestic Violence Unit to report that their two sons were drug addicts who would constantly demand money to sustain their habits and would wreck the house if their demands were not met.

The inspector added that on one occasion, while the father had been cleaning his firearms, one of the defendants had grabbed the weapon and threatened to kill him, after the father refused to give the money that his son was demanding to buy drugs with.

The court also heard how the twins’ father had told police that he had spent “over a million euros” on his sons’ drug habit over the years.

The defendants, who told the court that they were unemployed, both pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Lawyer Yanika Barbara Sant, assisting the defendants, asked the inspector when the father had reported the gun incident. “Yesterday,” replied the inspector, clarifying that the actual incident had purportedly happened three months ago.

Barbara Sant requested bail at this stage.

Inspector Cauchi objected to the men being released at this stage, citing the risk of them suborning witnesses as they visited their parents every day. The defendants also had a criminal record.

Barbara Sant disagreed with the inspector’s assessment of the defendants to be untrustworthy, arguing that they had never been convicted of breaching bail.

She expressed scepticism about the alleged incident involving the father’s firearm, arguing that if it had really caused the parents to fear for their lives, the report would have been made on the day of the incident and not three months later.

Bail was denied by the court, however, because of the nature of the charges, together with the fact that the alleged victims were yet to testify in these proceedings, meant that the court could not have peace of mind that evidence would not be tampered with.