The Malta Independent 28 September 2020, Monday

Court declines request by Victoria mayor to have case heard before a different magistrate

Tuesday, 4 July 2017, 15:39 Last update: about 4 years ago

The court has declined the request by Victoria Mayor Samuel Azzopardi to have the magistrate presiding over the libel case filed against former Minister for Gozo Anton Refalo. Azzopardi had filed a libel suit over comments which the former Minister wrote on Facebook related to the drunken driving case.

Samuel Azzopardi wanted to have the case heard before another magistrate instead of Joanne Vella Cuschieri who is a failed Labour Party candidate. The court had already rejected Azzopardi’s request and PN MP Jason Azzopardi, appearing as one of his lawyers, had filed a constitutional case.

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Madam Justice Lorainne Schembri Orland has decided to turn down Azzopardi’s request. The court, while criticizing Malta’s political polarisation, said that partisan politics cannot obstruct the procedures of the court.

Schembri Orland noted that once a person is chosen to sit on the bench of Maltese Judiciary, it is presumed to be impartial.

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