The Malta Independent 3 February 2023, Friday
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Updated: Prison boss resigns after court finds him guilty in Ghadira firearm incident

Tuesday, 24 January 2023, 10:30 Last update: about 9 days ago

Prison director Robert Brincau on Tuesday was sentenced to 12 months in jail, suspended for three years, after he was found guilty of injuring a man and carrying a firearm without a licence at Ghadira Bay in August last year.

He resigned the post soon after the judgment was handed out.

The court had previously heard witnesses describe how the prison director had allegedly threatened an ambulance crew with a handgun.

In his testimony, the director of the Alpha Medical private ambulance company, Charlton Caruana, had said that Brincau threatened to kill him and his family, in an angry phone call.

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Brincau, 49, took over the directorship of the Corradino Correctional Facility from Lt. Col. Alexander Dalli in 2021.

Brincau was charged with causing slight bodily harm, threatening a man with a weapon, insulting and threatening the man, carrying an unlicensed firearm in public, being armed during the commission of an offence and breaching the peace.

Brincau was also acquitted of having used electronic communications equipment to threaten the director of the rival ambulance service.

In her judgment, magistrate Charmaine Galea noted that although Brincau's criminal record was untainted, he needed to understand that what he did could in no way be punished lightly.

The court also issued a three-year restraining order in favour of the victims, and ordered the confiscation of the firearm and bullets involved.

Lawyer Edmond Cuschieri appeared parte civile. Superintendent Priscilla Caruana Lee and Inspector Ryan Vella prosecuted.

In a statement soon after the judgment was pronounced, the Home Affairs Ministrty said that Brincau had resigned from the post as prisons director with immediate effect.

Christopher Siegersma, who is currently the Commissioner for the Safeguarding and Development of Prisoners, will be appointed as chief executive instead of Brincau.

At the time of the charges, Home Affairs Minister Byron Camilleri had said that he would no suspend Brincau from his duties.

Byron Camilleri, when asked by MaltaToday, had said that there is a clear conflict in the versions given by the parties, and that it will be the courts to decide which version is correct.  

Camilleri also said that the alleged incident did not occur at the place of work, and said that in delicate moments one cannot have a vacuum in the leadership of a prison.

 

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