Second person charged with robbing petrol stations

The man is the second person to be arraigned this week for robbing a number of fuel stations

(Stock photo)
(Stock photo)

A second person has been charged with a spate of thefts from petrol stations.

Stephen Galea, 41, of no fixed address, was arraigned before magistrate Nadine Lia this afternoon, accused of carrying out a number of thefts from petrol stations.

Galea is the second person to be arraigned in connection with the thefts, from petrol stations in  Paola, Zabbar, Attard, Qormi, St. Paul’s Bay and Mellieha.

While the police had been investigating the thefts, they had seen CCTV footage of a man and a woman forcing open the petrol station’s cash repository. 

The woman, Charlotte Zammit - mother of Liam Debono, who is charged with the attempted murder of a police constable - was arraigned earlier this week after being arrested.

Galea was found to be driving the same vehicle identified in the CCTV footage. A search of his vehicle returned a number of tools which could have been used in the thefts.

His defence counsel, lawyer Graziella Tanti, entered a plea of not guilty asked the court for a ban on the publication of the man’s name. This request was not favoured by the court.

Bail was also requested, prompting objections by the prosecution.

The accused told the police that he didn’t have a fixed address and slept in his car, pointed out prosecuting inspector Roderick Agius. He was also already on bail and stood charged with breaching it, said the inspector.

The accused needs help, added Agius, “he needs someone to lead him, to get him back on his feet.” He mooted the possibility of probation. “If he goes back to society with the problems he has, I feel we would be making a step backwards.”

The court observed that one of the accusations is breaching bail. After hearing submissions, and referring to the law, the court declined to release the man from arrest, saying that principal witnesses are yet to testify and evidence had to be preserved. It also noted that no residential address had been provided.

More in National