Drug addict charged with defrauding elderly Mount Carmel patient of €21,500

36-year-old man remanded in custody after pleading not guilty to producing a fake proxy and using it to withdraw €21,500 out of victim’s bank account

A drug addict from Cospicua was today remanded in custody after he pleaded not guilty to defrauding an elderly Mount Carmel patient of €21,500.

Jon Lawrence Formosa, 36, of Cospicua, a deliveryman, also denied fabricating a fake proxy to withdraw money from his victim’s bank account, to committing a burglary from an office on two separate occasions, to handling stolen property, and to breaching bail conditions, amongst other charges.

The court heard that allegedly, the accused, got hold of his victim’s information after her abused the trust of her relative.

The 60-year-old victim is currently at Mount Carmel Hospital.

The prosecution explained that the accused allegedly produced a fake proxy using his victim’s details and then withdrew money from banks in Paola, Marsa, and Fgura, bringing the total amount to a total of €21,575.

The court heard that after carrying out weeks of investigations into the suspicious withdrawals, the police discovered that the accused had been involved, and consequently arrested him.

Moreover, the court heard that the accused allegedly burgled an office in Paola by entering through a window, and made off with a Toshiba television, stamps, detergents, and a rubber stamp. Sources said that after stealing the rubber stamp, the accused used it to forge the proxy.

In submissions for bail, the prosecution insisted that bail should be withheld because the accused abused of a person who had trusted him, and argued that Formosa could not be trusted because he committed the burglaries at a time when he was meant to be at home.

Despite the defence’s plea for bail – which argued that the accused is a recovering drug addict and has made considerate progress to kick his habit -, presiding Magistrate Aaron Bugeja denied bail and remanded the man in custody “due to his criminal record, and fear of tampering with evidence.”

Inspectors Spiridione Zammit and Hubert Cini led the prosecution, while Lawyer Joe Ellis was legal aid.