The Malta Independent 21 October 2021, Thursday

Budget 2022: Governance – AG’s office to take on additional prosecution functions

Shona Berger Monday, 11 October 2021, 20:05 Last update: about 9 days ago

• Ongoing work to address FATF grey listing to yield desired results • Malta to have a non-permanent seat in UNSC in 2023 and 2024 • Development of first rehabilitation centre at CCF for 140 people

The Attorney General’s Office will be given additional prosecution functions in coordination with the police, the Finance Minister announced.

This will be in line with a view to developing a specialised prosecution service in the Attorney’s General’s Office, while allowing the police to focus on offence investigations.

This is to provide a better-quality prosecution service and reduce delays within the criminal justice system.

One of the budget’s proposals for 2022 will entail the development of the first rehabilitation centre within the boundaries of the Corradino Correctional Facility. This centre will cater for around 140 people.

The government will continue working on strengthening rehabilitation services.

The retirement age of judges and magistrates within Malta’s judiciary has been extended, whilst new appointments have also been made within the Judiciary.

The workplan drawn up for the Maltese authorities to address the action plan provided by the FATF is serving as a guideline for the investigative work of authorities. The ongoing collective work being carried out is expected to yield the desired results, Caruana said.

Throughout 2021, the Maltese government worked on ensuring Malta’s compliance with the recommendation put forward by the Venice and Greco Commission. This was done by carrying out reforms which address the recommendations made by Moneyval.

With an investment of more than €2.2 million, the government strengthened the structure of the Asset Recovery Office by implementing measures which provide the recovery of the proceeds of crime.

Meanwhile, within the field of Civil Procedure, a law came into force aimed at reducing the work pending before the Court of Appeal. This was done by providing the possibility for the court of appeal to give a hearing only in those cases where it considers that this is necessary.

The government also sought to reduce the outstanding work by increasing the compositions of the Court of Civil (Superior) Appeals in order to speed up the appeals process and serve the citizen between and within a reasonable time.

Throughout 2021, the first collective agreements were signed for Disciplined Bodies with an investment of over €15 million so that now the 5,000 workers who make up the Disciplined Bodies have better working conditions and rights.

The strategy of transforming investment in infrastructure, specialized equipment, new vehicles and human resources training is being implemented.

 

Foreign relations

With regard to Malta’s role in the United Nations, preparations will be intensified in June 2022 so that for two full years – 2023 and 2024Malta will have a non-permanent seat within the United Nations Security Council (UNSC).

The government has invested heavily in providing humanitarian assistance in regions affected by disasters or crises. This was carried out in countries such as India and the Dominican Republic, Libya and Tunisia.

This commitment through the Development Assistance fund will continue to be sustained over the coming years.

In addition, over the coming year Malta will continue to be an important voice in favour of multilateralism. The government believes that the platform of international organisations should be used to reach pro-peace compromises.

 

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