Silvio Grixti interrogated by police over disability benefit scandal

Former Labour MP Silvio Grixti called in to be interrogated by the police on Thursday afternoon over the fraudulent acquisition of monthly disability benefits by hundreds of individuals who were not legitimately entitled to them

Former Labour MP Silvio Grixti
Former Labour MP Silvio Grixti


Former Labour MP Silvio Grixti was called in to be interrogated by the police on Thursday afternoon, MaltaToday has learnt.

He was called for interrogation over his role in the disability benefit scandal revealed in September.

This is the second time that Grixti has been interrogated by the police, having been questioned in 2021.

Sources told MaltaToday the police took a statement from Grixti during their interrogation.

Grixti allegedly provided false medical documentation to assist people, often residing in strongholds of the Labour Party like Żabbar, Żejtun, and Paola, in fraudulently obtaining monthly social benefits meant for severe disabilities they did not actually suffer from.

The operation enabled claimants to receive monthly payments, averaging around €450, from the social security department.

Some individuals implicated in the scheme during 2019 and 2020 have asserted to police investigators that they were directed to Grixti by various individuals, including a Labour minister, a now-deceased PL MP, ministers' aides, and even customer care officials from the Prime Minister's office.

READ ALSO: Independent Board to assess alleged abuse, shortcomings in disability benefits scheme

In recent weeks and months, the police have discreetly filed charges against numerous individuals who benefited from this scheme.

The majority of those arraigned, according to the same newspaper, have confessed to the charges and agreed to reimburse the wrongfully acquired funds, subsequently receiving suspended sentences for defrauding the government.

Grixti has yet to face charges for his alleged central role in facilitating this fraudulent scheme.

He resigned from parliament after being interrogated by the police over an investigation into allegations of falsification of medical certifications.

During the course of the investigation, a seized laptop played a crucial role in revealing the extent and organization of the fraudulent operation.

Sources familiar with the ongoing police investigations suggested to the newspaper that the number of false disability claims stemming from this scheme may potentially reach approximately 800. However, this exact figure has not been verified.

Allegedly, the scheme gained enough notoriety within Labour circles to develop a life of its own, with some claimants admitting to obtaining forged certificates from individuals other than Grixti.

Lawyers Franco Debono, and Arthur Azzopardi are appearing for Silvio Grixti.