Men charged with stealing €20,000 in 2010
Two men who at the moment are serving a jail term have been arraigned in court accused with participating in an armed robbery on a foreign exchange bureau in St Julians on August 8, 2010 and making away with €20,000.
Two days after the robbery Keith Galea, 32, of Sta Venera, had pleaded not guilty to the theft from the Fexco bureau. Aaron Cassar and Joseph Grech also pleaded not guilty when arraigned two and a half years later over the same hold-up.
The hold-up took place at around 09:30h when a hooded man walked up to the till, fired two shots at the bulletproof glass and demanded money from the salesman. The police suspect there were four men involved in the robbery but, so far, three have been charged.
The accused also pleaded not guilty to holding Josef Aquilina, the salesman, against his will and using violence against him, damaging the bulletproof window, firing a weapon in an inhabited area and carrying a weapon without a police licence.
They also denied stealing a Hyundai Accent and a pair of licence plates and putting these on the car. The getaway car was found by the Police in the Swieqi-San Ġwann area soon after the incident. The salesman, whose hands were bound with tie belts, ran out of the bureau, and was cut loose by a neighbouring shopkeeper, who called the Police. The robbers had entered the building with carnival masks and also shot twice in the air when a tourist was getting in the building.
Both pleaded not guilty to hiding evidence from the police and of relapsing. Magistrate Carol Peralta remanded both in custody.
Police Inspectors Joseph Mercieca and Nikolai Sant prosecuted while lawyer Anthony Cutajar appeared for Aaron Cassar and Joseph Grech.