A police sergeant was accused on Thursday of raping the victim of a burglary when he allegedly called at her home as part of investigations.
Glenn Carabott, 40, from Mtarfa, was also accused of non-consensual sex, taking a video of the encounter and committing a crime he was duty-bound to prevent.
He pleaded not guilty.
Magistrate Gabriella Vella turned down a defence request for the case to be held behind closed doors but agreed to ban the name of the victim.
The alleged rape took place between Friday and Saturday last weekend when the officer allegedly called at the woman's apartment after the theft. The report of the theft was not filed in the police database.
The victim later spoke to a doctor and was interviewed by police.
Magistrate Vella turned down a request for bail after verbal spats between the officer’s lawyer and the prosecution.
The alleged victim had spoken to a doctor and had also released an audio-visual statement about the incident, prosecuting inspector John Spiteri said, prompting defence lawyer Arthur Azzopardi to point out that the victim’s version had thus been preserved.
But a request for bail was strongly objected to in view of the very serious nature of the case, aggravated by the fact that the accused was a policeman who was bound to prevent such offence.
Moreover, the victim’s version was only partly preserved since a video handed over to the police was still to be analysed.
There was also a clear and real risk of tampering since the officer knew where the alleged victim lived, the inspector argued further.
The court upheld another request, imposing a four-year protection order in favour of the alleged victim, ordering the accused to steer clear.
Carabott has served in the force for 18 years and also served in Kosovo. In 2018, he was widely praised for rescuing a baby which was abandoned outside a block of flats in Buġibba.
Lawyer Rene Darmanin appeared parte civile to represent the alleged victim.