How many persons were pardoned in homicide cases throughout Malta’s history?
Maltese crimes historian, Eddie Attard, told TVM that although pardons were given in the history of homicides in the Maltese islands, the rate in the past two centuries was far less than that of the 21 Century.
“We only had 10 pardons in the 19th Century, that is they were not common; we had far less in the 20th Century with only some three or four”.
Mr Attard said that, during the past 20 years, four of the five pardons were given to assist police to solve a murder. He said that Police revert to the pardon even if the persons are well known to police. “The authority had no choice but to give them the immunity, despite that they formed part of a gang of thieves”.
He added that apart from the presidential pardon, in the case of Daphne Caruana Galizia murder, the Government also offered a reward – a rare thing for Malta. “The last time the Government offered a reward was in the case of a homicide in 1955…that is this was not a common thing”.
Asked about the gangs in Malta’s homicide history, Mr Attard said this is a somewhat new thing. “We cannot say that we had many cases of murders committed by gangs, but in case of bombs, many of the cases were not solved. Therefore there is a big question of whether they formed part of a gang or something else”.
Mr Attard added that this week’s developments may lead to new evidence for Police about who may have manufactured a number of bombs recently used in homicides, who placed them and their mastermind.