Daphne Caruana Galizia murder suspects granted bail once again in money laundering case

Alfred and George Degiorgio will remain in custody since the compilation of evidence against them over the murder of the journalist is still ongoing

Brothers George and Alfred Degiorgio were granted bail in proceedings separate to those into the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia
Brothers George and Alfred Degiorgio were granted bail in proceedings separate to those into the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia

The two men accused of the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia have been granted bail in separate money laundering proceedings currently ongoing in their regard.

Both will remain in custody, given that the compilation of evidence against them over their involvement in the Caruana Galizia murder is still ongoing.

George Degiorgio and Alfred Degiorgio, together with Anca Adelina Pop – the mother of George Degiorgio’s children - stand accused of a series of money laundering charges.

They were charged after police investigators started looking into the two brothers’ lifestyle. Both men claim to be unemployed.

Back in October last year, the two brothers were granted bail, with the court arguing that denying bail should be the exception not the rule. Days later, bail was however revoked by the Criminal Court after the attorney general filed an appeal against the ruling. 

The judge praised the first court for its emphasis on the presumption of innocence until proven guilty, however it said that “what the court must look at when deciding on bail are the criteria laid down in article 575 of the Criminal Code,” which deals with crimes in respect of which bail should not be granted, including the tampering of evidence.

The decision was challenged, with the Criminal Court, presided over by Mr Justice Giovanni Grixti, delivering a decree on Friday in which it observed that the bail application filed by the co-accused on 29 March should be upheld since all the prosecution witnesses had been summoned and had testified in the compilation proceedings before the court of Magsitrates.

READ MORE: Daphne Caruana Galizia murder suspects arraigned on money laundering charges

Grixti observed that in view of this, there were no further obstacles to the granting of bail, explaining that the Attorney General’s claimed preoccupation “as to the untrustworthiness of the accused” needed to be supported by at least a minimal degree of evidence.

The granting of bail had to balance the rights of society in general against those of the persons being held under arrest, said the judge. In this case, the aim of preventive arrest had been exhausted he said.

As they no longer needed to be held in custody, the court granted the men bail against a deposit of €35,000 each, a personal guarantee of €35,000 each, as well as ordering them to sign a bail book twice daily.

In addition, the judge also ordered the men to observe a curfew and strictly forbade them from setting foot in any sea or aircraft.

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