Three years in prison for disobeying court order

The accused never made contact with his probation officer, despite having been placed under a treatment order by the court

Failure to obey a probation order has landed a man a three year jail term.

Last June Neville Abela had been charged with theft, possession of cocaine and heroin. A probation officer had also been appointed by the court to monitor Abela in August after he was found guilty of the charges and placed under a probation order for three years.

Abela was also placed under a treatment order. But the man never made contact with his probation officer in the months that followed, leaving the officer in question no option but to report this to the court.

Judge Giovanni Grixti, presiding the Criminal Court, noted that Abela had “found every excuse” not to meet the Probation Officer to come up with a plan for his rehabilitation and had eventually moved out of the address where he had been living without informing the court of his new residence.

The judge, in his decision on the matter, said that he would not be discouraged that Abela could one day rehabilitate himself, but said his behaviour “even in this hall” showed that he wasn’t ready to grasp the opportunity given to him by the probation order. He was also being a danger to his family and was, “frankly, taking the place of other people who truly wanted to benefit from treatment.”

The court revoked the probation order and instead, sentenced the man to three years imprisonment.