The driver who killed a pedestrian in Gżira on Wednesday morning in what police believe was a cocaine-fuelled crash has been identified as Jeremie Camilleri. 

Camilleri, a 33-year-old Maltese-French national who lives in Lija, had to be tasered and subdued by police officers after he resisted arrest shortly after the 1am crash on Testaferrata Street. 

The Toulouse-born Camilleri had several brushes with the law, with his most recent conviction coming just two weeks ago on January 4, when he pleaded guilty to petty theft from health food stores in Sliema and Attard and breaching a probation order. 

On that occasion, the court said that it was "ready to offer the defendant one last opportunity to clean up his act” and placed him under a three-year probation order.

In 2012, he was convicted of damaging a neighbour's property and received a one-year prison sentence, suspended for one year. 

Camilleri was also involved in another incident last November, when somebody threw a small explosive device into his home through a window and then fled.

Lija residents who spoke to Times of Malta said Camilleri is notorious in the area, with neighbours saying they had seen him shouting and verbally abusing his mother in the street where the family resides. 

Police say Camilleri tested positive for cocaine and alcohol following the Wednesday morning crash and is currently being held at Mater Dei Hospital. 

His victim, 30-year-old Turkish woman Pelin Kaya, died shortly after she was rushed to hospital. 

Eyewitnesses have claimed that Camilleri attacked the woman as she lay on the ground and alleged that he grew aggressive when passers-by tried to help. 

The accident happened near the Paul & Rocco petrol station at 1 am in Testaferrata Street, when Camilleri smashed his black BMW into the KFC fast food outlet after hitting the Turkish woman.

A video of the crash shows Camilleri, dressed in black, getting out of the crashed vehicle and walking across the street and out of the camera’s range of view. 

Independent journalism costs money. Support Times of Malta for the price of a coffee.

Support Us