A former gravedigger admitted in court yesterday that he unknowingly took a young man to his death.

Emanuel Farrugia testified that he had driven 21-year-old Mario Camilleri to a field in Birżebbuġa and waited as instructed to do by Jason Galea, 39, of Birżebbuġa, one of two men accused of murdering the young man and his father, Mario, 58, on July 17.

After waiting for a long time, Mr Farrugia said he called Mr Galea and, on getting no response, he went to look for him. He said he saw Mr Galea and George Galea, 41, of St Julian’s, leaning over the body of Mr Camilleri Jr, punching him.

He was testifying in the compilation of evidence against both men who are pleading not guilty to murder.

Jason Galea is Mr Camilleri Sr’s brother-in-law.

The Camilleris were killed minutes apart, with the father, known as l-Imnieħru, meeting his end in Marsaxlokk and his son, who was stabbed 34 times, shortly after. They were buried in a field in Qajjenza, Birżebbuġa.

Mr Farrugia said that after he witnessed the scene, he turned around in complete and utter shock and ran as fast as he could back to his car and drove back home. He said he did not know what to think of what he saw and was literally “scared to death”.

‘Literally scared to death’

On arriving at his house in Valletta, he walked into the bedroom, where his wife was enjoying an afternoon siesta, dropped onto the bed and fell into unconsciousness before coming round some two hours later.

Mr Farrugia said that when he woke up he went to his car and filled the radiator with water. As he was doing so, the accused turned up and Jason Galea told him that if the police spoke to him he was to say nothing about what he saw.

Jason Galea told him that he had “taken care” of the two Camilleris, which the witness said he understood to mean that he had killed them.

Jason Galea asked him to accompany him to his father’s house to have a shower. Mr Farrugia said he knew Jason Galea’s father. Once Jason Galea had showered, he insisted with Mr Farrugia to give him a pair of shorts and a t-shirt to change into.

Recounting the hours before the murder, Mr Farrugia said he was asked by Jason Galea to meet him at Jessie’s bar, in St Andrew’s, which he did. Mr Galea told him to pick up Mr Camilleri Jr from outside the deceased’s house. Mr Camilleri Jr was very agitated and rude and told him to get to the field as soon as he could.

On arriving at the field, Mr Camilleri Jr got out of the car, met Jason Galea and the two of them walked around the corner and into a field before he witnessed the murder, Mr Farrugia said.

Lawyers Joe Giglio, Gianluca Caruana Curran, Shazoo Ghaznavi and Robert Galea requested bail for the accused and Magistrate Antonio Micallef Trigona said he would decide at a later stage.

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