Judicial promotions for Francesco Depasquale and Yana Micallef Stafrace

Judicial promotions for Francesco Depasquale and Yana Micallef Stafrace • Nadine Sant, daughter in law of Labour Party lawyer Pawlu Lia, tipped for magistrate

Members of the judiciary attending the ceremony to mark the opening of the forensic year
Members of the judiciary attending the ceremony to mark the opening of the forensic year

Two magistrates are expected to be made judges in the latest round of judicial promotions: Francesco Depasquale and Yana Micallef Stafrace.

The daughter in law of the Labour Party’s lawyer Pawlu Lia has also been cleared for a new magisterial appointment, that will be created after the promotion of magistrates to the superior courts to fill the vacancy created with the recent retirement of Judge Antonio Mizzi.

Depasquale was made magistrate in 2011, having been assigned all the libel and defamation cases. In 2012 he was elected to the Committee of the Association of Judges and Magistrates of Malta and has been its General Secretary since. In 2007 he was appointed by the Government as Malta’s representative on The European Commission for the Efficiency of Justice (CEPEJ) of the Council of Europe, and in 2010 he became a member of the Steering Group of SATURN (Centre for Judicial Time Management), one of the ongoing activities of the CEPEJ, a post he retains to date.

Yana Micallef Stafrace, daughter of forrmer Labour MP Joseph Micallef Stafrace was called to the bar in 1987 were she practiced mainly in the field of civil and criminal litigation. She was appointed to the Bench in April 2017. She was Chairperson of the Commission on Domestic Violence from 2013 to 2016, and sat in the Small Claims Tribunal from 2010 to 2015 and was a member of the Industrial Tribunal from 2013 to 2017. She was also a member of the Permanent Commission against Corruption from 2014 to 2017.

Nadine Sant recently served as a legal advisor for the Ministry for the Economy, Investment and Small Business, and as the chairperson of the Family Business Act committee, under Economy Minister Chris Cardona. Sant’s father-in-law Pawlu Lia has been Labour’s and Joseph Muscat’s lawyer in several high-profile cases.

Sant, now Nadine Lia, was more recently appointed as the Regulator for Family Businesses responsible for developing and introducing policy and legislation specifically for family businesses. She has in the past worked as a barrister in chambers at the Middle Temple Inn, London, a lawyer at the Attorney General’s Office.

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