Court experts cost taxpayer €1.3 million in 2013

To date there are 1,778 pending court inquiries, Prime Minister Joseph Muscat says.

Court experts have been paid €1.28 million in 2013 alone, the Prime Minister Joseph Muscat revealed tonight in Parliament.

The figure for this year dwarfs the expenditure in previous years, with experts appointed by court being paid a total of €830,540 in 2012, €825,217 in 2011 and €943,327 in 2010.

The information was tabled in Parliament together with other data on the have been closed in the last few years.

In total, 1,519 inquiries are still pending in Malta while a further 340 inquiries are pending in the Gozo court.

Between January 2010 and September 2013, 3,913 inquiries were closed in the Valletta court while 150 cases were closed in Gozo in the same period.

Labour MP Silvio Parnis also asked the Prime Minister to reveal which experts were appointed by which magistrates and how much these experts were paid by each magistrate in total.

However, Muscat said that the information on which experts were appointed by each magistrate was classified, while the information on the cumulative payments to each expert was not collected.

"The information on the cumulative payments to each expert was not collected." Joey said. But the Courts do compile information to pass over to the Department of Inland Revenue on the amount each expert receives at the end of the year to declare in his income tax assessment. Or are these payments to court experts tax- free. Iddahhaqniex Joey.