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Man facing court stab charge has bail revoked

Pasqualino Cefai

Pasqualino Cefai

A man accused of stabbing two men in a Gozo courtroom was granted bail only to have it revoked two days later, following an appeal by the Attorney General.

Pasqualino Cefai, 37, of Żebbuġ was granted bail on November 28 against a deposit of €5,000 and a personal guarantee of €20,000 during the compilation of evidence against him on a charge of attempted murder.

However, the Attorney General filed an appeal and the case was taken before Mr Justice Lawrence Quintano.

Among other things, the AG’s office said bail should be revoked because of the nature of the crime and Mr Cefai’s criminal record.

Mr Justice Quintano revoked bail on November 30.

Mr Cefai was arrested when he turned himself in at the Victoria police station, after a stabbing in a Gozitan courtroom last June.

Joseph Portelli, 54, was stabbed around 20 times while his lawyer Kevin Mompalao sustained injuries to his arm.

The incident happened before Magistrate Josette Demicoli who had been presiding over a civil court case between Mr Portelli and Mr Cefai.

Police officers who testified in Mr Cefai’s compilation of evidence said Magistrate Demicoli had ordered Mr Cefai out of the courtroom after he kept interrupting her and passing remarks.

Mr Cefai was upset because the court had seized two of his trucks to be sold off to give Mr Portelli compensation.

He said his family’s livelihood depended on these trucks and that he had a wife and two children to feed.

He even threatened Mr Portelli, saying he would “pay him back”.

Seconds after leaving the courtroom, Mr Cefai charged back in and attacked Mr Portelli, stabbing him repeatedly and also injuring Dr Mompalao, the police said.

Mr Portelli has since made a full recovery.

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