Start of trial by jury on heroin trafficking – eleven years after man’s arrest
The trial by jury has started in the Criminal Court of 34-year-old Herman McKay of Marsa, who is charged with trafficking half a kilo of heroin.
Accused had been arrested in mid-August of 2007 in Triq is-Serkin, Marsa after Police had received information that he was trafficking drugs.
As the Police were approaching McKay’s car, he tried to dispose of the keys, which were caught by an officer. As soon as the Police opened the car, accused ran to the driver’s side and started throwing the contents of a packet on the road. The Police managed to stop him doing the same with a second packet. Laboratory tests later concluded that there were over 530 grams of heroin with a purity of 23% and with a street value of nearly 25,000 euro.
The accused was also carrying three mobile phones and 1,900 euro in cash.
A procedural error four years ago led to the bill of indictment being annulled, and proceedings had to start afresh.
Accused pleaded not guilty to the charges.
The trial is being presided by Mr Justice Antonio Mizzi. Lawyers Justine Cilia and Elaine Mercieca from the Attorney General’s Office are prosecuting, and lawyers Franco Debono and Marion Camilleri are defence counsel.