A judge has revoked a temporary injunction issued against a doctor in a legal row over the will of a COVID-19 victim after his sisters failed to prove that the will was irregular or that the doctor had taken advantage of their brother.
Madam Justice Anna Felice revoked the temporary injunction issued against medical doctor Jan Chircop, son of the late Labour MP Karl Chircop, after ruling that Alberta and Jane Mangion had failed to prove alleged irregularities over the will of their late brother Mario.
The legal squabble is over the will signed on October 7 last year by Mangion, 69, who died on February 5 just days after contracting the COVID-19 virus. His sisters claimed that the following day, just one hour after the burial, Chircop informed them that he was their brother’s universal heir and handed over a copy of Mangion’s last will issued before notary Joe Cilia.
They also claimed that Chircop had gone to their brother’s house in Gudja and took various documents, bank details, internet banking pins, a shotgun, jewellery and cash, including money belonging to them which Mangion was keeping. The sisters said all these were taken on the same day of the burial.
The sisters filed an application for an injunction in an attempt to stop Chircop from implementing the will and to stop him from taking any items belonging to their late brother.
But in her judgment, Madam Justice Felice ruled that the Mangions had failed to satisfy the criteria set out at law but simply relied on the allegations made in the case where they are requesting that the will be declared null and void. The court noted that they did not present any evidence in court to sustain these allegations or prove that they had a right against Chircop.
On the other hand, the court noted, the will was correctly drafted by a notary according to law and there was no evidence to prove any deception exercised on the deceased or that the deceased was in any way subjected to any pressure, fear or moral abuse as the applicants were claiming.
The doctor and notary had already denied any wrongdoing in reply to a judicial protest filed by the sisters last March when they claimed that Chircop had taken all of their brother’s possessions within an hour of their brother’s burial and that Cilia had committed irregularities in the publication of the will they were contesting.
Chircop had said that Mangion was not only a family friend but the victim had considered him a second father. He said the claims made by the two sisters displayed utter disrespect towards their brother and his wishes.
Chircop had insisted he had not taken anything he was not authorised to take and denied that he had obtained an illicit copy of the will, a copy of which Mangion himself had given him upon signing. A handwritten note on the will that reads “true copy for Jan” was written by Mangion.
Lawyers Luke Dalli, Matthew Paris, and Ann Marie Cutajar appeared for Chricop.
Independent journalism costs money. Support Times of Malta for the price of a coffee.Support Us