Police inspector Gabriel Micallef has been dismissed from the corps after letting a man who had just been sentenced to jail, walk out of court and go to prison by bus.
In 2014, Micallef had escaped punishment over his involvement in the investigations into the shooting incident involving former Home Affairs Minister Manuel Mallia’s driver.
Micallef, one of several officers suspected of requesting footage of the shooting, was on forced leave pending the inquiry that had cost Mallia his job.
Sources close to the police told The Shift that Micallef had his employment terminated following an inquiry by the Public Service Commission.
Those sentenced to prison are usually escorted there by the police. The police inspector’s decision was in breach of procedure, which exists for the obvious reason that anyone would prefer to take a bus to Golden Bay rather than Corradino.
In reply to questions sent by The Shift, the Public Service Commission said it is “legally precluded from divulging such information, as it would be in breach of both the Data Protection Act and the Professional Secrecy Act.”
Further questions sent to the police force over the matter remain unanswered.
The Shift is informed that prison guards were stunned when the man showed up unaccompanied. He was at first sent to the gate for visitors to enter the facility.
After explaining that he was there to be incarcerated, with the referral note issued by the court, the guards eventually took him in.
Micallef appealed the decision taken by the Public Service Commission. The Malta Police Association also petitioned Prime Minister Joseph Muscat, responsible for the Public Service Commission, to have the termination reversed. The termination stands, so far.
The Police Officers Union (POU) said it had refused to petition the Prime Minister as this would have set an ugly precedent, in clear breach of the basic principles of the rule of law and the separation of powers.