Keith Schembri confirms he will be charged over Hillman probe

The former OPM chief of staff claims that the magisterial inquiry ordered for criminal action to be taken against himself and the directors of Allied Newspapers Ltd

Keith Schembri has confirmed that he is facing criminal charges in relation to Hillman-Schembri money laundering probe, together with the directors of the Allied Newspapers.

In a lengthy Facebook post, the former OPM chief of staff claims that the magisterial inquiry recommended that criminal action be taken against Keith Schembri, the directors of Allied Newspapers, as the Magistrate ruled that the news outlet defrauded Malta Enterprise.

Minn mindu irrizenjajt fl 2019 ħsibt li ser inkun nista’ nkompli ngħix hajti u ngawdi ftit minn dak kollu li iccaħħadt...

Posted by Keith Schembri on Thursday, March 18, 2021

The inquiry dealt with allegations that Adrian Hillman, a former managing director of Allied Newspapers, received €650,000 worth of bribes from Schembri through a British Virgin Islands company.

Schembri's Kasco Group had won a competitive tender to supply Allied Group's Progress Press with a multi-million euro printing press in 2010.

In his post, Schembri maintains that Progress Press had issued a tender, in which three companies bid, and the tender was scrutinised by auditors and two boards within the company. 

"This tender was won because our bid was more than €2 million cheaper that the closest competitor," he said.

Schembri attempts to seek sympathy among Labour voters by blaming the issue on the Nationalist establishment.

"The Nationalist establishment never understood or accepted this tender [...] this is the same establishment that could not understand or accept how a Labourite had built a strong bridge with the Times of Malta," he wrote.

Schembri said that he has his own reservations over the conclusions of the inquiry, claiming that they are dangerous and based on misinformation.

"I believe that these conclusions were not drawn by chance [...] These conclusions are certainly driven to accomodate money at the expense of bustling and exemplary people in business," he said.