Court throws out contempt complaint from Yorgen Fenech defence over leaked tapes

Court finds no contempt in Attorney General’s call for leaked tapes investigation

Inspector Keith Arnaud and lawyer Charles Mercieca (right)
Inspector Keith Arnaud and lawyer Charles Mercieca (right)

There were no  “offensive or insulting” terms in an application filed by the Attorney General that requested an investigation into a recent leak of secretly recorded conversations between Yorgen Fenech and Melvin Theuma.

The issue concerns the publication on Reddit of five clips of exchanges that appear to include self-confessed middleman Melvin Theuma, speaking to another associate of Yorgen Fenech, charged with complicity in the assassination of the journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia.

The voice recordings, uploaded through an anonymous account created on 8 August, were among those heard behind closed doors in the ongoing murder compilation, during a sitting on 22 July.

The leak prompted an application by the AG calling for urgent investigations, as well as from the Caruana Galizia family.

Magistrate Rachel Montebello declared that such leaks were a direct affront to court authority and ordered a police investigation.

But Fenech’s lawyers countered that the prosecution had failed to look into other “far more serious allegations.”

"How is Arnaud mentioned in these tapes? How often? In what context? How did Theuma get hold of certain documents? How much money was truly exchanged for this murder? Were there any urgent investigations about all these matters? No. And yet there was urgent investigation about the leaked tapes in contempt of court,” defence lawyer Charles Mercieca argued.

Fenech’s lawyers even took objection to certain “offensive or insulting” language in the AG’s application, against them. But the court concluded it had found no such terms.

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