A man and his nephew were remanded in custody on Thursday after pleading not guilty to stealing a van, then burgling a restaurant and a petrol station all in one night, almost two weeks ago.

Patrick Ryan McGahern, 31 and his nephew Daniel McGahern, 21, were taken o court from the prisons,  where they were being detained under preventive custody over separate charges.

The two faced fresh charges over the thefts that allegedly took place on the night between March 11 and 12.

The Maruti van was stolen from Zabbar and later found in  Valletta.

Inside the vehicle, police discovered strip barcodes linked to a Marsascala restaurant which had been also burgled that night.

The van was also linked to a third theft from a petrol station at Ghaxaq where cash was stolen from a vacuuming machine.

CCTV footage from the area where the van was parked in Valletta showed the two suspects getting out of the vehicle, wearing identical clothes.

Investigators tracked down the two suspects who had meanwhile landed in custody over separate charges.

On Thursday, the pair were jointly charged with aggravated thefts.

Daniel McGahern was separately charged with breaching previous bail conditions.

They both pleaded not guilty.

Given the circumstances, their lawyers did not request bail but asked the court to appoint a probation officer to monitor the accused to help them tackle “various social issues.”

Magistrate Rachel Montebello upheld the request and remanded both men in custody.

Inspectors Jonathan Cassar, Darren Buhagiar and Kurt Farrugia prosecuted.

Lawyers Charles Mercieca, Franco Debono and Francesca Zarb are defence counsel.

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

Support Us