Updated | Man released on bail after pleading not guilty to drug trafficking

Court says police claims that victim resisted arrest unsubstantiated

Nicholas Vella, 30, was released on bail on Wednesday after pleading not guilty to trafficking 1.5kg of cannabis, drug possession, illegal possession of a firearm and breaching the conditions of a previous court sentence.

Vella, who is unemployed and lives in Pembroke, was arrested late on Tuesday after a raid by the police drug squad on a garage in Msida turned up more than a kilo of cannabis resin, 100g of cannabis, a firearm and €20,000 in cash.

The court found that the police's claims that Vella had resisted arrest could not be substantiated and heard the defence insist the accused should be given the benefit of the doubt.

Vella was released on bail against a €7,000 deposit and a €15,000 personal guarantee. He is to turn his passport in to police and sign in at the St Julian's police three times a week among other conditions.

The lawyers Jason Azzopardi and Kris Busietta were on the case.

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