Migrants awarded €5,000 each for breach of human rights

Two migrants were awarded compensation for having spent more time in prison than they were sentenced to serve.

Two men were awarded €5,000 each after a court found that their human rights had been breached when they spent more time in prison than they should have.

Omar Osman from Somalia and Anwar Otman Hasan from Sudan were convicted in November 2012, over their involvement in the gang rape of a Maltese woman. They were given a four-year jail term but spent far longer than that in custody.

They had been taken into custody in 2007 after a woman alleged to have been gang raped by four men at the Marsa Open Centre in the early hours of March 19 of that year.

The men had filed a Constitutional Application against the Attorney General and are demanding compensation from the government as they are alleging they did not have a fair hearing in reasonable time and as a result, had been imprisoned for longer than their sentence.

Omar Osman Omar and Anwar Otman Hasan said that they stayed in jail for more than two-and-a-half years in prison without any justification.  In their application, they stated that both had been accused before a Magistrate’s court of violent rape, attempted violent defilement and illegal arrest in March 2007. 

After nearly six years, the hearing started in front of a criminal court and both were acquitted of violent rape on November 12, 2012 but found guilty of the rest and jailed for four-and-a-half years. The Sudanese said that while waiting for trial, the process took six years in all, as they were still under preventive arrest.

Dr. Roberto Montalto defended Omar Osman while Dr. Kris Scicluna defended Anwar Otman Hasan.