‘I acted normally’ - Muscat on Fenech introduction to Milan president in March 2019

Muscat introduced Yorgen Fenech to Milan president over energy deal when Tumas magnate was already person of interest in Caruana Galizia assassination

Joseph Muscat said he met Manuel Scaroni (main photo) in London, when the latter inquired about the Electrogas deal. Muscat then spoke to Yorgen Fenech about it
Joseph Muscat said he met Manuel Scaroni (main photo) in London, when the latter inquired about the Electrogas deal. Muscat then spoke to Yorgen Fenech about it

Former prime minister Joseph Muscat has confirmed reports that he had introduced Tumas magnate and 17 Black owner Yorgen Fenech to AC Milan president Paolo Scaroni in March 2019 on a potential Electrogas deal.

The former Labour leader has claimed the information has been obtained through the WhatsApp chats in the hands of police investigators concerning him, Fenech, and Muscat’s former chief of staff Keith Schembri.

At the time of the chat, Fenech was already a person of interest in the assassination of Daphne Caruana Galizia, something that was clearly known to Muscat.

The former PM has always claimed the Malta Security Services had instructed him not to deviate from normal behaviour in his interactions with Fenech.

Scaroni is a former chief executive of Italian oil group Eni and deputy chairman of Rothschilds bank.

According to the Sunday Times report, Muscat would have advised Fenech that should a deal with Scaroni be reached, the local partners should still retain a shareholding in the Electrogas project.

Following Muscat’s tip to Fenech about Scaroni’s interest in Electrogas, Fenech travelled to Italy to meet the AC Milan president. Scaroni is understood to be a friend of Muscat, who is an avid AC Milan supporter.

On Sunday, writing on Facebook, Muscat said that he met Scaroni in London in the presence of Maltese officials.

“During the meeting, he brought up the subject of Malta’s energy project and said that there could be investors interested in the said project. I replied that it was a private venture and that we could only put him in touch with the consortium. That is what happened and I was not involved in subsequent discussions,” Muscat said.

Muscat said this was “normal practice”. “I acted normally on a request, especially one regarding a project of national interest.”

Muscat insisted that the Sunday Times had sourced its information from WhatsApp chats in the hands of investigators, and that this had been selectively quoted. “They fail to point out that I said in no uncertain terms that I will not get involved in negotiations.  Moreover, agreeing to a stand can hardly qualify as giving ‘advice’."

“The sources could have also quoted my testimony on the reason for the conversation I wanted to have with Mr Fenech, and the message about which is quoted again. The latest police testimony in court shows clearly that even according to the chats, the said conversation never took place. The report fails to make this very important point while it then ventures into others which are only remotely connected to the story.

“I always did my duty, be it in attracting investment to bring about the biggest and longest economic growth period in Maltese history, and be it in making sure that a case of national importance be solved, something all my predecessors failed to do so.”