The director of defunct telephony company MaltaTel, Ernest Cilia, was yesterday served with an arrest warrant after the Labour Office filed a report over unpaid salaries.
The Gozitan company MaltaTel was set to become a major player in the telco sector when the company suddenly closed down before it could actually take off.
This morning Ernest Cilia will have to answer to questions in a Maltese court over why a former Gozitan employee is still awaiting €1,472.16 (Lm632) for wages and overtime which remain unpaid to this day, three years since the company closed down.
In an interview with sister newspaper Business Today in February 2005, Mario Gatt, then general manager of MaltaTel, had stated there would be “heavy investment” in the company. However after just a few months the company closed down and the offices in the Xewkija Industrial Estate remained abandoned.
Since then both clients and workers have been trying to get their money back but to no avail. Until now the former employee is awaiting to receive the sum of €1,472.16. She raised her concern with the Labour Office which subsequently the latter filed a case against Cilia.
The case faced some hurdles as it was first being deferred when the police were claiming they were not able to trace Ernest Cilia. It then transpired that the police did not have their general records right and that he was actually residing in an apartment situated in Karlu Galea Street, Victoria.
MaltaToday Midweek can confirm that yesterday at 9.30am three police officers went to Cilia’s residence and presented the arrest warrant. Witnesses say that this ‘meeting’ took around 45 minutes.
Shortly afterwards, Ernest Cilia was seen entering the Victoria Police Station.
Magistrate Anthony Vella is presiding over the case against Cilia.