Hugo Chetcuti's alleged murderer was "mentally disturbed" ex-employee - lawyer

Cmelik was sacked for being drunk at work, Giglio claims

Bojan Cmelik was charged with the murder. Photo: Matthew Mirabelli

Bojan Cmelik was charged with the murder. Photo: Matthew Mirabelli

Hugo Chetcuti was murdered by a "mentally disturbed and disgruntled" employee who was sacked for being drunk at work, the victim's lawyer claimed on Friday.

Well-known criminal lawyer Joe Giglio made his comment in reply to a contentious post uploaded by The Shift News editor Caroline Muscat on Facebook, hours after the entrepreneur was pronounced dead. 

"You are talking rubbish," Dr Giglio hit back at those who attempted to cast a dark light over Mr Chetcuti's legacy and the real motives of the alleged murderer.

Hugo Chetcuti died on Thursday night.Hugo Chetcuti died on Thursday night.

Dr Giglio is representing the Chetcuti family as parte civile lawyer in criminal proceedings against Serb national Bojan Cmelik, who was charged with the attempted murder last week. 

"His bouncers, as you refer to them, are not his but security is sub-contracted to a firm which has no connection to him. In any case, even if this were not the case, your idea of complicity is worrying and the conclusions you jump to even more so," he said.

"You are also not aware of his financial commitments and his exposure with the banks. Unless, of course, for you getting loans is an act of money laundering."

He was 'larger than life' - family

Meanwhile, a statement published by the Chetcuti family described the entrepreneur as "larger than life, a man who captivated us all with his generosity, compassion, wit, and profound awareness and sympathy for those less fortunate".

"The local entertainment and hospitality industry has lost its favourite son, but will continue to reap the benefits of his foresight and determination for decades to come," the family said. 

They said the Hugo's Group will continue to operate normally and details of the funeral will be announced shortly.