Over half of the prison population at Corradino Correctional Facility have been convicted for at least one offence related to drugs.
In a new interview by Lovin Malta, Prison Director Col. Alex Dalli said that up to 70 per cent of prisoners in Malta have committed some form of crime that is connected to illicit substances.
“Roughly between 60 and 70 per cent of prisoners have something that relates to drugs in some way,” Dalli told Lovin Malta. “There are some that were involved in drug trafficking; you have others that committed a crime while being drug users.”
Malta currently has around 726 prisoners, meaning that at least 435 of them statistically have at least one drug-related charge. However, these didn’t include any charges related to purely personal use, Dalli said.
“People who were caught because they use drugs are not in prison – there’s another court for that, that doesn’t send you to prison, with other consequences for being under the effect of drugs,” he said.
Malta has a drug tribunal for cases involving simple possession, and not trafficking. Around 3,000 people passed through this tribunal between 2015 and 2019. If found guilty, users can be charged €125 as part of a fine, but will not have the conviction placed on their criminal record.
Malta’s prison was long known to have a serious drug problem, with substances being smuggled inside in various ways for decades. However, since 2018, when Dalli took over as director, he and his team had made eradicating drugs within prison a key priority.
Today, the prison is drug-free, Dalli has said.
Stay tuned to find out more on Malta’s prison, and the conditions inside, in an exclusive interview with Col. Alex Dalli released next week.