The Malta Independent 20 May 2022, Friday

Prisoner who spoke out against ‘reign of terror’ in jail placed in solitary confinement

Monday, 3 May 2021, 13:13 Last update: about 2 years ago

A prisoner who filed a court application decrying what he described as a reign of terror, fear, and torture at the Corradino Correctional Facility has been placed in solitary confinement in what he called a “retaliation” to the claims he made last week.

Brian Vella, 41, filed a second application in the Criminal Court on Monday claiming that his first application last week – where he made a request to the courts to launch a magisterial inquiry into “inhumane treatment” that he and other prisoners were facing daily – had prompted prison officials to further degrade his treatment.

He claimed that after filing the first application, he had his cell searched while he wasn’t there and was stopped from using the prison telephone to communicate with relatives.

He was also transferred to a different division where prisoners are usually sent as a punishment and placed in solitary confinement.

Vella, who has already served 21 years of a life sentence over a double murder, asked for the courts to transfer him to the Forensic Ward at Mount Carmel Hospital.

In his first application, Vella claimed that the management of the prison was never as bad as under the present administration.

“A systematic campaign of terror, fear and torture reigns inside the CCF, carried out by the prison guards with the blessing and permission of prison director Alex Dalli and the management,” Vella claimed.

In a brief statement on Saturday, a spokesperson for the Correctional Services Agency said that it “categorically denies” the allegations put forth by Vella.

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