The Malta Independent 25 May 2019, Saturday

Cabinet approves nomination of three judges, three magistrates

Thursday, 25 April 2019, 08:25 Last update: about 30 days ago

The Cabinet of Ministers has approved the nomination of three judges and three magistrates, the Department of Information said in a statement.

The will bring the total number of judges to 24 while the number of magistrates will remain at 22. More than 50% of them are women.

The magistrates who have been promoted to judges are Francesco Depasquale, Joanne Vella Cuschieri and Aaron Bugeja. Lawyers who will be appointed magistrates are Nadine Lia, Victor Axiak and Bridgette Sultana.


The appointment of Lia as magistrate has stirred controversy as she is the daughter-in-law of Labour lawyer Pawlu Lia

A number of lawyers could boycott sittings presided by Nadine Lia if she is appointed magistrate. The disgruntled lawyers also threatened to take the matter to the Constitutional Court if they are assigned cases presided over by Lia.


New judges

Francesco Depasquale

Depasquale graduated as a lawyer in 1995 and became a magistrate in 2011. He was appointed secretary general of the Association of Judges and Magistrates.

He obtained a masters in maritime law with a distinction from the International Maritime Law Institute.

As a student he was active in the Law Students Organisation, the European Law Students Association and the University Students Council.

He is married and has two children.

Joanne Vella Cuschieri

Vella Cuschieri graduated as a lawyer in 2011 and continued her studies with a Magister Juris in European law.

She was appointed magistrate in 2014 and worked mostly in Gozo.

She is married with three children.

Aaron Bugeja

Aaron Bugeja graduated as a lawyer in 1995 and obtained an MA in law in 2012.

He worked as aprivate lawyer and later as a prosecutor in the Attorney General's office before he was appointed magistrate in 2013.

He is married with two children.

New magistrates

Nadine Lia

Nadine Lia graduated as a lawyer in 2004.

She worked as a prosecutor in the Attorney General's office and also as a private lawyer.

She is married with two children.

Victor Axiak

Axiak laħaq graduated as a lawyer in 2005 and continued his studies in taxation law.

He worked as a private lawyer in commercial and civil law.

He is married with two children.

Bridgette Sultana

Sultana graduated as a lawyer in 1995.

She served as a lawyer within the Health Ministry.

She has two children.



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