A harrowing year of suffering and uncertainty has come to an end for a nursing manager who has been cleared of sexually harassing four colleagues after their story was exposed as a lie.

The truth emerged at the 11th hour after one of the women making the accusation cracked on the witness stand during cross examination by defence lawyer Giannella de Marco and admitted the whole story was invented to get rid of him.

From the moment he was charged in court last August up until the recent revelation in court, 48-year-old Carmel Grixti’s life was turned upside down and plunged into darkness.

Instead of celebrating his family’s milestones – one daughter becoming a doctor, his other a policewoman and celebrating 25 years of married life – he ended up facing charges in court and his reputation being flushed down the drain.

Speaking to The Times yesterday, Mr Grixti said he was the victim of a frame-up and, although angry at what had happened, he was elated that the truth had emerged.

“My wife and I spent seven months crying so much in bed, that our pillows were soaked with our tears”, Mr Grixti said, describing the pain and suffering he endured as his reputation and flawless 30-year career lay in tatters.

A nursing manager at the Mtarfa old people’s home, Mr Grixti was also responsible for the home as acting head and would take care of the day-to-day running of the home.

His accusers – Moira Gauci, Abigail Azzopardi, Charmaine Scicluna and Phyllis Phillips – worked for a subcontracted cleaning firm and decided to get rid of him by inventing a story of sexual harassment.

During the case, all testimony was heard behind closed doors but was exposed in the judgement handed down by Magistrate Anthony Vella who said he found the witnesses to be lacking credibility.

For a reason that remains unknown, they all said he sexually harassed them and forced them to perform sexual acts on him under threat.

During their testimony it was as if they were recounting something they had heard instead of something they had actually experienced themselves, the magistrate said. He felt there was something not quite right about what they had said and in fact he had a serious doubt about how much of the truth was being told.

In his police statement, Mr Grixti always denied he was in anyway involved with committing such crimes.

In the last sitting, Ms Scicluna took the witness stand only to change her version of events and received a warning from the magistrate that lying under oath was a crime punishable by prison.

She was sent to the court house lock-up and on returning broke down in tears and admitted the allegations were all an invention and intended to get Mr Grixti out of the home.

The magistrate noted that, by changing her version while on the witness stand, as she was entitled to do, Ms Scicluna managed to avoid any criminal action being taken against her.

He also said that, after reviewing all the evidence, there was no shadow of guilt on the accused and acquitted him.

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