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14 years in jail after admitting to 2021 Tigné stabbing

A man was on Thursday jailed for 14 years, fined €4,000 and had all his property confiscated after admitting to the attempted murder of a man who tried to break a scuffle in Tigné in August 2021.

Hisham Ali Abuagilla, 40, from Libya, formerly residing in Sliema, was sentenced this afternoon by Mr Justice Aaron Bugeja after pleading guilty in return for a reduced sentence following a plea bargaining agreement reached with the prosecution.

Abuagilla had been arrested in connection with a near-fatal stabbing after a 10-day manhunt by the police.  He was subsequently charged with attempted murder, inflicting grievous injury, breaching the peace, and carrying a knife in public without a police permit.

At the time of his arrest, Abuagilla was carrying a pocket knife and several small packets of substances suspected to be cocaine, ecstasy and cannabis, in circumstances indicating that they were not for his personal use.

The police later found more drugs, hidden inside a protein shake bottle at his home.

He was also accused of possession of cocaine, ecstasy and cannabis, in circumstances which indicated they were intended for trafficking.

Luke Daniel Jones, the man stabbed by Abuagilla, had told the court that before the incident he had been drinking with two work colleagues at a bar in Paceville.

When the bar closed, one of the victim’s friends suggested they meet up with the accused in Sliema.

A fight broke out between the victim’s friend and Abuagilla who was drunk and when Jones intervened to break up the scuffle, he was stabbed six times in the chest, neck, back, and face.

Mr Justice Bugeja condemned Abuagilla to 14 years in jail and fined him €4,000. He also ordered him to pay €14,600 in court expenses and confiscated all his property.

The court turned down a request by the defence lawyer, Noel Bianco, to allow his client a year after serving his prison term to pay the fine and court expenses.

Prosecutor Etienne Savona represented the Office of the Attorney General in the proceedings.