Man caught with half a kilogramme of marijuana appears in court

Matthew Zarb from Birkirkara was arrested in Zejtun yesterday following a police tip off

An unemployed man from Birkirkara was granted bail earlier today after he pleaded not guilty to charges of aggravated possession of marijuana.

Matthew Zarb, 27, had been stopped and searched in Zejtun by police acting on a tip off, yesterday. He was found to be carrying almost half a kilogramme of marijuana on his person.

Inspector Gabriel Micallef, prosecuting, confirmed that small amounts of marijuana had also been found at his home.

Hinting at the possibility of an early admission, defence lawyer Veronique Dalli contended that in the circumstances there was no reason to deny the accused bail. He had cooperated completely with the police and had already admitted that he had been smoking marijuana for 10 years, said the lawyer. 

Dalli pointed out that he had strong ties to Malta and was not a flight risk. While the aggravated possession charge was, indeed, serious, there were no witnesses to testify besides police and court experts, explained the lawyer. He had never missed court appearances for other arraignments, she added.

The court, on account of the fact that there is no risk of tampering with evidence and no witnesses, granted Zarb bail against a deposit of €1500 and a personal guarantee € 4500.


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