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What happened on... August 13

On this day 10, 25 and 50 years ago...

10 years ago - The Times

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Police cleared in HQ death case

A magisterial inquiry has concluded that the police did not commit any violence on Nicholas Azzopardi, although his family is still plagued by doubts and scepticism.

Before he died on April 22, Mr Azzopardi had alleged that he was brutally beaten and thrown off the bastions while in custody, casting a shadow over the force’s reputation.

The inquiry, led by Magistrate Anthony Vella, absolves the force of any wrongdoing and concludes that Mr Azzopardi did not suffer “aggression, beatings, or violence” at the hands of the police, according to a press release issued by the Justice Ministry yesterday.

Police Commissioner John Rizzo said when contacted that the inquiry proved the force’s innocence: “We had to put up with mud-slinging and suffer in silence. I’m very satisfied that the truth has emerged.”

Boy dies in swimming accident

A 14-year-old boy, James Borg, died shortly after being pulled out of the sea unconscious following what turned out to be a late night swimming accident. The police said that a mobile squad patrol was informed that a boy had been injured at Għadira Bay at around 12.45am yesterday.

25 years ago - The Times

Friday, August 13, 1993

Curtain could fall down on local drama companies

Malta’s drama companies yesterday hit out at the Manoel Theatre, saying the recent increase in charges could force them to close down.

Fees for using the theatre have been put up by 84 per cent, from Lm120 to Lm220 a night and the companies have been restricted in the choice of production they can put on.

But a spokesman for the theatre told The Times that the rise was due to a reduction in the subsidy they received from the government and had been inevitable.

At a news conference yesterday morning, the newly-formed Association of Drama Companies performing at the Manoel Theatre condemned the price increase, saying that many of them would not be able to survive it.

Their only option for survival would be to lower the standard of their productions, but all the companies agreed this was not an option at all.

Carmen Azzopardi, chairman of the association, said drama companies had made an average loss of Lm600 per production last year when the rate for hiring the theatre was only Lm120 per evening. When asked whether they would consider boycotting the Manoel Theatre completely, Ms Azzopardi replied with a very hasty “no comment”.

50 years ago - Times of Malta

Tuesday, August 13, 1968

Woman’s fatal mistake

Tragedy struck opposite the Ramla Bay Hotel yesterday afternoon. Vincenza Cauchi, 65, of Ħamrun, who had taken the wrong bus to go to Marfa, was run over by this bus soon after alighting at Ramla Bay. She died a short while after.

Mrs Cauchi took the Mellieħa bus with the intention of catching the Marfa ferry boat to Gozo. She was keen to be there for the feast of Santa Marija. Instead of taking the Marfa bus – a mistake which proved to be fatal – she boarded the Ramla Bay bus and found herself opposite the Ramla Bay Hotel instead of the Marfa jetty.

Twenty-two-year-old Joe Grima, of Mellieħa, the bus driver, started driving off, when he felt the vehicle pulling to one side. He stopped immediately but it was too late.

Governor General to be the first blood donor

The Governor General, Sir Maurice Dorman, will be the first person to donate blood at the Blood Transfusion Haemotological Centre (Blood Bank) at the clinic of the Sovereign Military Order at 196, St Ursula Street, Valletta on Friday at 6pm. Blood will be available free of charge as from Monday.

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