Jail for woman who falsely reported ex-partner’s girlfriend of having slapped kid

Mother gets eight months in prison for false police report

A magistrate has jailed a woman for filing a false report against her ex-partner’s girlfriend.

Francine Cini, a 32-year old mother from Zebbug, Gozo, was prosecuted over a false report which she filed at the Victoria police station in May last year claiming that her ex-partner’s girlfriend had slapped the couple’s four-year old daughter.

Cini reported that the man’s girlfriend had slapped the younger girl after the child had thrown a tantrum.

Summoned to the police station, the girlfriend denied having slapped the girl.

Her testimony was later corroborated by the elder of the two girls who claimed that it had been her mother who had told her to say that her sister had been smacked by her father’s girlfriend.

The court heard a police sergeant testify that he had overheard the 7-year-old tell her mother at the police station “You told me to say so….”

The incident resulted in charges being filed against the mother for fabricating evidence of an inexistent offence and for filing a false police report.

The court in Gozo, presided over by magistrate Joseph Mifsud, concluded that there was sufficient evidence proving the second charge, acquitting her, however, of the first.

Magistrate Mifsud noted that this had not been the first time that the accused had filed false reports, having previously accused ex was a cocaine user. For that false report, she had received an effective jail term which was subsequently converted to a fine on appeal, owing to the fact that she was a mother who needed to take care of her two minor children.

There was no such gentle treatment this time, however. The court declared her guilty of lodging the false report and jailed her for eight months.

“Our society deserves protection against persons like the accused who believe they may continue to take everyone, including the Courts, for a ride,” declared Magistrate Mifsud, denouncing those who wasted the police and courts’ precious time by filing false reports.

The accused was also ordered to pay €392.90 by way of court expert expenses.

Inspector Bernard Charles Spiteri prosecuted.

Update to original story

The woman was acquitted on appeal.

Get the story here: Appeals court criticises magistrate for relying on report by court expert who got it wrong

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