A murder trial has had to be postponed at the last minute this morning after an administrative oversight.
The trial by jury of Etienne Bartolo, known as il-Vojt had to be put off to an unspecified date after the list of potential jurors was not published in the government gazette. Around 150 members of the public were due to undergo the initial screening from whom the final crop of jurors were due to be selected, today.
Madame Justice Consuelo Scerri Herrera issued a decree at around 9pm last night delaying the jury until further notice in view of the technical issue.
Bartolo, 38, from Birkirkara is accused murdering 26 year-old Roderick Grech (photo) from Naxxar in March 2017.
Grech was stabbed to death with a penknife in what is thought to be a drug deal gone wrong.
In the late night decree, the court said the jury could not continue as the list was not published in the Government Gazette. The judge ordered an investigation into the issue.
Meanwhile in court this morning, a number of the potential jurors arrived for selection and were informed of the problem and told that they would be contacted by telephone. Court officials were seen taking down the phone numbers of the approximately 150 potential jurors.
The mix-up has caused logistical problems for the courts, with hotel bookings for the jurors, court ushers and other officials having to be cancelled and later rebooked.
The trial is now set to start on Wednesday.