After calling PN leader ‘Yorgen’s mate’, Azzopardi replies to defamation threat

Delia was “trying to hide the political effects of the choices he made behind an empty legalistic words,” says PN MP Jason Azzopardi

PN leader Adrian Delia filed a judicial protest against Nationalist MP Jason Azzopardi over 'defamatory and false rumours'
PN leader Adrian Delia filed a judicial protest against Nationalist MP Jason Azzopardi over 'defamatory and false rumours'

Adrian Delia’s failure to deny allegations that he had met Yorgen Fenech over a bid to scupper MEP David Casa’s re-election chances showed that they were true, according to a counter-protest filed in court this morning.

Nationalist MP Jason Azzopardi filed the counter-protest in response to his party leader, Adrian Delia’s, recent filing of a judicial protest against him. Delia had claimed that Azzopardi was spreading “defamatory and false” rumours via SMS. One of the text messages presented as part of the court proceedings reads: ‘Of course it is! And you have no idea of the hundreds of other messages in the mobile of Fenech in 2019 relating to the payment to Delia of €50,000 and pledge of €100,000 or more if Casa was not elected. You have NO idea what I’ve been holding up inside me since January. Know once and for all that the man is a pathological liar.”

Delia also asked why Azzopardi did not go to the police with this information in January, alleging that Azzopardi was doing all he could to sully Delia’s name.

Reacting in a Facebook post in which he called Delia “Fenech’s mate”, Azzopardi had challenged Delia to resign if the evidence proved him wrong. Referring to the PN leader as “Yorgen Fenech’s friend,” Azzopardi said Delia had never outright denied having communicated with Fenech.

This morning’s counter-protest, signed by lawyers Stephen Thake and Kris Busietta, argues that the judicial protest was simply a smokescreen. Azzopardi states that Delia was “trying to hide the political effects of the choices he made behind an empty legalistic words.”

No judicial protest was going to change the forensically confirmed fact that Delia had secretly communicated with Yorgen Fenech after Fenech’s ownership of Dubai based kickback recipient company 17 Black became public knowledge. Delia had met Fenech for a meal after the revelations, Azzopardi states. “This at the same time that [Azzopardi] and a small number of PN MPs…were attacking with their speeches and court actions and beyond, at risk to their lives, the corruption carried out by the secret company 17 Black through its owner Yorgen Fenech.”

Delia’s actions after the 9th November 2018 – the date when Fenech’s ownership of the company was made public - weakened the criticism by and actions of Azzopardi, other MPs and civil society, which had all strongly attacked government corruption at great risk to their safety, Azzopardi said.

Azzopardi stated that he had nothing to take back from what he had written and said, “because what he wrote and said is the truth and confirmed by the same evidence, now preserved, which was extracted and analyzed by the competent authorities, which are not solely the Maltese authorities.”

He said it was interesting to see how Delia had chosen to file his judicial protest on the eve of a crucial and sensitive vote in the PN, when he had been in possession of the information for a long time.

Delia did not care whether he dragged the entire party down with him, said Azzopardi, saying that he, on the other hand, was doing his best to stop this from happening and to “uncover the real truth before it is too late.”

Nowhere in his judicial protest had Delia denied the accusations, Azzopardi remarked. “Had he truly been innocent, Delia would have said that the allegations were not true, but he did not say this. Had he not been part of the conspiracy to stop David Casa from being elected to the European Parliament in May 2019, Delia would have himself asked to testify before the inquiring magistrate. Strangely he has not done this.”

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