Caruana Galizia murder: Degiorgio wants criminal case suspended until wiretap challenge is decided

George Degiorgio ‘ic-Ciniz’ demands suspension of criminal hearing until decision on challenge against legality of wiretaps

George Degiorgio (left) and brother Alfred, both accused of the assassination of Daphne Caruana Galizia
George Degiorgio (left) and brother Alfred, both accused of the assassination of Daphne Caruana Galizia

One of the three men accused of the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia has filed an urgent application to suspend a hearing before the Criminal Court scheduled for 31 October, in view of a case he recently filed, challenging the legality of wiretaps used as evidence.

William Cuschieri, George Degiorgio’s lawyer, filed the application less than a week after filing a challenge to the legality of telephone intercepts which are central to the prosecution’s case.

During the compilation of evidence against Degiorgio, his brother Alfred ‘il-Fulu’ and Vincent Muscat ‘il-Kohhu’, the police had testified to how they had used telephone intercepts to monitor conversations, triggering signals and even the movement of the bomb itself. But none of the recordings of the conversations or their transcripts have been exhibited in evidence, and neither had the Head of the Security Services been summoned to testify about them.

It was for that reason that last week Cuschieri had claimed that the Security Services Act breached his client’s rights, asking the court to strike off all of the illegally obtained evidence.

It was evident that the outcome of the phone-tapping case could have a bearing upon the criminal proceedings, argued Cuschieri.

The Criminal Court, presided over by Madam Justice Edwina Grima, is to consider a number of preliminary pleas, prior to the trial on 31 October.

Degiorgio asked the First Hall of the Civil Court in its Constitutional jurisdiction, to grant an interim measure, by ordering that proceedings before the Criminal Court be immediately suspended until the phone-tapping case was definitively concluded.

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