Bad egg charged with €2,000 Chick King theft

A 25 year-old repeat offender from St. Paul's Bay has been released on bail after being charged with breaking into a Mosta fried chicken outlet early on Tuesday morning and stealing €2,000 from the till.

Magistrate Audrey Demicoli was told how a thief had forced his way into the Mosta Chick King restaurant at around 1am, prised open the cash register - damaging it in the process  and helping himself to the contents.

Inspector Nicholas Vella charged Paul Joseph Cachia, who works as a driver, with theft aggravated by value, means and time. Cachia was also charged with criminal damage, violation of property and relapsing.

Defence Lawyer Andy Ellul entered a plea of not guilty and requested bail. The accused was a recovering drug addict, who had sought assistance from Caritas and was under psychiatric care, he argued to the prosecution's standard opposition to bail on the grounds that witnesses were still to testify.

The defence argued that bail is the rule not the exception.

The accused had already spent time on police bail in order to receive treatment for diabetes and no witnesses had been approached by the accused, his lawyer pointed out.

Were the court to grant bail, Inspector Vella asked the court to order that man not to approach any Chick King outlet.

The court upheld this last request, granting Cachia bail against a deposit of €400 and a personal guarantee of €2,000, ordering him not to approach any shops owned by the local fried chicken chain.