Magistrate Neville Camilleri was told that 27-year-old Jimale Hassan had walked into the Marsa police station, hoping to meet a certain police officer.
When he was told that the officer was on leave, the Somali allegedly punched the policeman delivering the news, breaking his nose.
Legal aid lawyer Noel Bartolo explained that the accused had gone to the station with some papers and the policeman on duty had torn them up in front of him.
He added that Hassan was drunk at the time and was sorry for his actions.
Inspector Robert Vella commented to the court that “the trend of aggression towards the police cannot be countenanced any more”.
The magistrate handed down a custodial sentence of three years and nine months, also fining the accused €4,500.