The Malta Independent 16 May 2022, Monday

Compilation of evidence against Abner Aquilina to start on Friday

Monday, 17 January 2022, 12:04 Last update: about 5 months ago

The compilation of evidence against Abner Aquilina, who is accused of murdering Paulina Dembska in Sliema on 2 January, will begin on Friday, Malta Today reports.

Aquilina, 20, from Żejtun, on Thursday was charged with the rape and murder of the 29-year-old Polish student. He was brought to court after spending a few days at Mount Carmel Hospital for treatment. He was remanded in custody.

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Police described the murder as a random act of violence and was not motivated by the victim’s gender, a position that has led to criticism from women’s groups, who said this was indicative of the lack of knowledge and sensitivity surrounding the issue of violence against women.

The case is set to begin on Friday before Magistrate Marseanne Farrugia.

Lawyer Mario Mifsud is Aquilina’s defence counsel. Superintendent Keith Arnaud and Inspector Jonathan Ransley are prosecuting, assisted by lawyer Anthony Vella from the Office of the Attorney General.

During Aquilina’s arraignment, Inspector Ransley had told the court how the police had been informed of a murder in Sliema and shortly after learned that a man was being treated for scratches and minor injuries at the Floriana clinic.

Testifying in court, Ransley said Aquilina not only killed Dembska but also raped her “vaginally, anally and orally”.

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