A court has ruled that it has no jurisdiction to decide a case where its judgement would have implied recognition of who is the Grandmaster of the ‘Sovereign Order of St John of Jerusalem’ (an order which is different from the SMOM, known as the Knights of Malta).
The issue came up when Louis Scerri Montaldo in his name and as Grandmaster of the order, filed an application again Basilio Cali’.
He said the Cali’ was presenting himself as the 77th grandmaster of the Order and appropriating funds which were due to the order. He called on the court to declare that the 77th grandmaster of the order did not exist and the accused had no title or post within the order.
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In his reply, Basilio Cali’ denied the charges and said that Chev Montaldo had been removed from the post of grandmaster on December 5, 2006 and he had succeeded him and assumed the right of legal representation of the order.
In its judgement, the court said that in terms of the law, no public official or authority in Malta could recognise or act in a way which was construed as granting recognition of some title of nobility or honour, decoration, membership or post which were not already recognised by the State.
The court said that were it to consider the issues in the case before it, it would be granting the sort of recognition prohibited by law. The court therefore declared that it had no jurisdiction over the case.