Estranged wife demands €5.5 million in maintenance - gets €33,000

Husband ordered to pay former wife €33,000 in child support and fines, after wife makes €5.5 million claim.

Anthony Cassar was ordered by the courts to pay his former wife €33,000 in child support and fines after his wife filed a €5.5 million support claim.

Bella Cassar filed against her former husband and companies Angerton Enterprises and Townhouse Limited, after the accused lapsed on his maintenance payment. The two companies were listed as his guarantors.

Magistrate Josette Demicoli was told that in their separation agreement, the husband agreed to pay Cassar a capital sum together with monthly maintenance payments and to finance the education of their children. The agreement read that a penalty of €1,000 daily would be incurred if the husband delayed payment over three days.

On 3 December last year, Angerton Enterprises, Townhouse Ltd and Cassar Weaving Ltd confirmed they were liquid debtors in favour of Bella Cassar for the amount of €275,000. €30,000 were advanced to the woman and €20,000 was to be paid from a jewellery sale. The companies agreed that the balance of €225,000 would be paid in monthly payments of €5,000. However the last payment was issued in June 2012 and Bella Cassar filed court proceedings the following October, demanding payment of €5,506,000 based on the separation agreement.

Screaming abuse and describing the civil suit as a form of usury, the accused argued that he could not keep up with the "extortionist" sums of money demanded by his estranged wife, due to debts and warrants issued against him.

The Magistrate Court in Gozo ordered the accused to pay a penalty of €25,000 to his former wife together with €8,550 in maintenance arrears. However Magistrate Demicoli stated that one of the couple’s children had came of age and his education was no longer to be paid for by the father.

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