Judge orders criminal action against Camilleri over Rosianne Cutajar WhatsApp leaks

Judge orders police to take criminal action against author Mark Camilleri for contempt of court

Mark Camilleri (Photo: James Bianchi/mediatoday)
Mark Camilleri (Photo: James Bianchi/mediatoday)

The Criminal Court has ordered the Police Commissioner to press charges against author Mark Camilleri over his publication of a trove of messages between former minister and current MP Rosianne Cutajar and the man indicted for commissioning the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia, Yorgen Fenech, despite a ban.

The unredacted chats were made public on Tuesday, just 24 hours before Camilleri was due to face Cutajar in court in a libel case the MP had filed against him, in which she had denied having a relationship with Fenech, who is indicted for the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia. The chats suggest that the opposite is true and that the two were involved in an intimate relationship.

Leaving aside the embarrassing nature of the chats, they also indicate that Cutajar had traded in influence and failed to disclose receiving expensive gifts from the Tumas magnate.

The day after the chat was leaked, Cutajar’s lawyers wrote to the Attorney General, arguing that the public prosecutor must inform the court and request an investigation into the leaks.

The publication of the chats appears to have been carried out in violation of a court order from November 2021 which had banned the publication of any data forming part of the case file against Fenech.

Cutajar’s lawyers wrote to the Attorney General the next day, demanding action be taken. Cutajar and her lawyers are understood to have delivered the letter by hand.

The lawyers also wrote to the Court of Criminal Appeal, asking it to take action against Camilleri for publishing her chats with Yorgen Fenech.

Acting with uncharacteristic speed, the Attorney General requested an investigation into whether the leaked chats were the same ones found in the court file relating to the criminal proceedings against Fenech, which the judge then ordered the police to carry out. 

This morning, the Police Commissioner informed the judge that investigations had confirmed them to be the same and that Camilleri’s publication had therefore breached the November 2021 ban.

In view of this, Madame Justice Edwina Grima ordered the Police Commissioner to prosecute Camilleri for contempt of court.

Cutajar has also mooted the possibility of filing further court proceedings over what has been termed “a breach of her right to private and family life and correspondence.”