Busuttil files Constitutional Court application over Panama Papers appeal

The former Opposition leader asked the court to overturn a decision  by Judge Antonio Mizzi not to rescuse himself in the appeal regarding the Panama Papers inquiry

Busuttil asked the court to overturn Judge Antonio Mizzi's decision not to recuse himself in the appeal regarding the Panama Papers (Photos: James Bianchi/MediaToday)
Busuttil asked the court to overturn Judge Antonio Mizzi's decision not to recuse himself in the appeal regarding the Panama Papers (Photos: James Bianchi/MediaToday)

Former Opposition leader Simon Busuttil has filed a constitutional application asking the courts to overturn a decision by Judge Antonio Mizzi not to recuse himself in the appeal regarding the Panama Papers inquiry.

The appeals - by Prime Minister Joseph Muscat, OPM chief of staff Keith Schembri, tourism minister Konrad Mizzi, Nexia BT partners Brian Tonna and Karl Cini, as well Malcolm Scerri and Adrian Hillman - were filed against a decision taken by Magistrate Ian Farrugia, who decreed, back in July, that there were the prerequisites for a criminal investigation had been met.

Busuttil argued that the Constitutional Court should declare he his right to a fair hearing was being breached, and that the appeal should be heard by a different Judge.

“I should not have needed to do this,” said Busuttil. “The Judge should have abstained of his own will because it is obvious he should abstain. As obvious as it was that Magistrate Consueolo Scerri Herrera should have abstained from the inquiry into the Daphne’s assassination.”

Busuttil insisted that it was unacceptable for him to have to go to such lengths for the process for justice on the Panama Papers to “make its first steps”.

“I am finding great resistance from the Prime Minister and his associates for something as basic as justice,” he added.

Busuttil reiterated his challenge to the Prime Minister, Schembri and Mizzi to withdraw their appeal “if they really have nothing to hide”.

“If the Prime Minister does not do this, I will continue with my dedication for justice and the rule of law in our country,” said Busuttil, adding that after the assassination of Daphne Caruana Galizia, he would be doing this with even greater determination.

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