Jeweller allegedly bought €350,000 in stolen jewellery
Glen Debattista who is awaiting a decision from the Court of Appeal after being found guilty of robbing the sum of half a million euro from a jewellery shop in Valletta, told Magistrate Antonio Micallef Trigona that together with his son and another man, they after the theft the three then went home, divided the stolen items and went their separate ways.
Mr Debattista said that he and his son had sold the jewellery to a famous jeweller in Valletta, and all they got was around €20,000. He said that he himself went four times to this famous jeweller at his shop in Birkkirkara and who used to switch off the CCTV before each deal.
The court was hearing evidence in the compilation of evidence against a 53-year-old jeweller from Valletta charged with handling stolen property after he allegedly bought €350,000 worth of jewellery which was stolen from Piazza Antiques Ltd in 2011. The jeweller, who cannot be named by court order, is pleading not guilty.
Taking the witness stand, Piazza Antiques owner Alfred Borg said that in August 2011 he received a call from the police about a theft from his shop. On arriving, he made a list of what was missing and gave it to the police. The value of the missing items was more than €500,000. Nothing has been recuperated since.
During cross examination, the witness said that he split up the stolen items to get more money because the accused had cheated and gave him €5,000 for what was €30,000. “That is why I went four times to sell the items to the accused, imagine I went once, how much he would have given me for the whole lot,” said Debattista.
The witness also explained that he went to sell the items to the accused because he knew him well. He also told him that the gold he was selling him was tampered with.
Police Inspector Joseph Mercieca is prosecuting and lawyer Michael Sciriha is appearing for the accused.
Magistrate Antonio Micallef Trigona placed the accused under a bill of indictment.