Since April, over 300 victims of crime were given support by the agency which was specifically established to assist them and inform them on their case outcome. The three most common crimes are domestic violence, theft and fraud cases against elderly persons.
The Agency for Crime Victims’ chief executive Brian Farrugia described the agency as a point of reference for the victim, who is not only that person directly affected by the crime.”There may also be relatives, neighbours and other persons close to the victim. These are also considered as victims of crime”.
The agency offers various free and confidential services from its central building in Triq it-Teatru l-Antik in Valletta. “We have the assistance of police, a probation and parole team and also public officers, legal and psycho-social professionals”.
Mr Farrugia said that many victims request information on their case progress in court or their participation in criminal proceedings, and also seek emotional assistance.
Christine Gauci, Case Officer 1 said that they offer safe environment so that clients may recount how the trauma has affected them psychologically and socially.
Doreen Priest from the Probation and Parole section said that, according to the 2015 Act on Crime Victims, the victim has the opportunity to be notified when the person who committed the crime against the person had served the sentence and was released from detention.
Mr Pries said 18 victims refused to be told about the outcome of the case because they consider it as closed.
The Crime Victims Agency is expected to have three regional offices in Santa Luċija and Gozo and is considering another office in northern Malta.