Valletta man denies multiple thefts

A refuse collector has been released on bail after pleading not guilty to stealing alcohol and other items from shops in Valletta. 

43-year-old Jason Galea from Valletta appeared in the dock before magistrate Aaron Bugeja this afternoon, charged with multiple counts of theft, relating to the period between 3 June and 18 August. The value of the objects stolen amounted to some €1,600. 

Prosecuting police inspectors Daryl Borg and Jeffrey Scicluna told the court that Galea had been identified from CCTV footage. The man had told the police that he had carried out the thefts to sustain his drug habit, said  the inspector,  objecting to defend lawyer Leontine Calleja's request for bail on the grounds that the accused might approach the shop owners.

Calleja argued that there was no reason for Galea to be remanded in custody, adding that he had a fixed address and was in regular employment.

The court upheld the defence's request and granted bail on condition that Galea does not approach the witnesses, signs a bail book daily and observes a curfew. His release from arrest was secured against a deposit €800 and a personal guarantee of €9,200.

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