Magistrate Monica Vella has had all her criminal and civil cases in the Gozo court reassigned by Chief Justice Mark Chetcuti.
All of Vella’s cases have now been reassigned to Magistrate Brigette Sultana.
According to statistics published by the courts, Vella decided four cases in Gozo during 2019, finishing the year with 197 active cases after having had 205 transferred to her.
She decided 32 cases in 2020, however, 251 remained active.
The decision was communicated to lawyers with pending decisions before the magistrate on Thursday, with the magistrate reassigned to work in the law courts in Valletta, according to reports.
Sources who spoke to the Times of Malta suggested that it was the magistrate’s slow low work output that prompted the rare move by the Chief Justice.
It is believed that the decision was taken after a number of complaints reached the Chief Justice. Some lawyers said they had been waiting for a decree for months.
Vella was appointed magistrate in 2015. Before that, she served as the mayor of Xewkija for 11 years and Commissioner for Justice in a local tribunal after that. She began practicing law in 1998.
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