Former policeman's parents deplore media 'insensitivity' following son's viral video
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Former policeman's parents deplore media 'insensitivity' following son's viral video

PC99 Mario Portelli was detained under medical supervision, parents say

Mario Portelli shot a video of his arrest.

Mario Portelli shot a video of his arrest.

The parents of a former policeman who made headlines after he uploaded a Facebook live video in which he was being taken away by officers have insisted the entire operation was undertaken under medical supervision. 

Former PC99 Mario Portelli had claimed that the government was trying to stop him from confronting Joseph Muscat about his (secret company) Egrant "lies".

In the video, Mr Portelli filmed police officers who turned up at his home to take him to Mount Carmel hospital. The last shot of the clip showed a policeman trying to snatch his mobile phone from him.

Mr Portelli had made serious claims against both the Prime Minister and Economy Minister Chris Cardona in previous videos. 

In a statement, Mr Portelli's parents deplored the media insensitivity with which their son's case had been handled, "including by some politicians". 

"This all happened under medical guidance and police did everything by the book to the best of their abilities given the circumstances," they said.

They thanked the police and the medical services involved in the case for all their help. 

"We hope that in the future, cases such as this are treated with the utmost sensitivity, especially by those who have greater social responsibilities than others," they added. 

Mr Portelli's arrest had been questioned by the Alliance for Mental Health, which asked the Commissioner for Mental Health and the Police Governing Board to investigate whether it was in line with Mental Health Act provisions. 

It was also questioned by Democratic Party leader Godfrey Farrugia who said that the way Mr Portelli was being handled and ill-treated took on an unprecedented significance.

Mr Portelli was the chief witness in the trial against former police inspector-turned-lawyer David Gatt, who had been accused of being involved in the failed heist of HSBC’s operations centre in Qormi in 2007.

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