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More witnesses testify in Caruana Galizia case

Short session hears officers' testimonies

Security outside the court has been tight. Photo: Reuters

Security outside the court has been tight. Photo: Reuters

Almost a year to date since Daphne Caruana Galizia's gruesome murder, the three men suspected of the killing were back court for the compilation of evidence on Friday.

10.05am: The case is adjourned until October 25.

The accused are being led out under the usual tight security. They appear rather amused at the brevity of Friday's hearing.

10am: On the witness stand are another two officers appointed on December 4 to carry out a search at GO's head office in Marsa, a parked Toyota Argo and premises in Żabbar.

The witnesses present all photos related to their searches, including fingerprints.

9.50am: Two officers from the forensic unit testify on the search they carried out at a St Paul's Bay apartment owned by George Degiorgio. 

Numerous items were retrieved, fingerprints lifted and samples were taken for DNA testing. All items and samples are listed in the report being presented under oath.

9.45am: Murder suspects Alfred and George Degiorgio and Vince Muscat gather in court. The victim's parents and sisters are also present in court.

In Thursday's session, forensics officers said devices had been lifted from parked cars outside the Marsa potato shed and regatta club and two vessels, apart from the sea-bed and locations in Siġġiewi and St Paul's Bay. Some devices were sent to Europol in The Hague for further analysis.

Over the last months, the magistrate has heard:

  • The bomb - between 300gr and 400gr of TNT - was an improvised explosive device clearly intended to kill the journalist.Forensic experts say there was metal shrapnel embedded in Daphne Caruana Galizia's body.
  • National security information system unit officer explained how information was collated from the various calls, determining the time and location they were made.
  • The FBI helped to home in on suspicious phone numbers. One was linked to a remote-controlled device and went active at 2am in Bidnija on the day of Ms Caruana Galzia's murder. It received an SMS at the time the bomb went off and immediately went off-radar.
  • Triangulated cell tower data to work out that the killer SMS was sent from out at sea. George Degiorgio was seen going fishing on that day, and shortly after the bomb went off texted his partner "buy me wine, my love."
  • Received reports of a suspicious car regularly parked by tat-Tarġa Battery - an ideal vantage point for the killers - in the days leading to the murder. The car was subsequently never seen there again.
  • Found a "fresh-looking" cigarette butt with Alfred Degiorgio's DNA on it under a tree at the tat-Tarġa vantage point.

The suspects: Alfred Degiorgio (il-Fulu), his brother George (iċ-Ċiniz) and Vince Muscat (il-Koħħu).The suspects: Alfred Degiorgio (il-Fulu), his brother George (iċ-Ċiniz) and Vince Muscat (il-Koħħu).

The key courtroom players:

Martin Fenech is appearing for Vince Muscat, known as il-Koħħu, 55.

William Cuschieri and Martha Muscat are appearing for Alfred Degiorgio, known as il-Fulu, 53.

Josette Sultana is appearing for Alfred's brother George Degiorgio, known as iċ-Ċiniz, 55.

Philip Galea Farrugia from the attorney general's office and inspectors Keith Arnaud and Kurt Zahra are appearing for the prosecution.

Jason Azzopardi and Therese Comodini Cachia are appearing parte civile.

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