Former police superintendent arrested over Melvin Theuma leaks

Police arrest former high-ranking police officer Raymond Aquilina over suspected leaks in Daphne Caruana Galizia murder investigation

A former high-ranking police officer is arrested over alleged leaks from the Daphne Caruana Galizia murder investigation
A former high-ranking police officer is arrested over alleged leaks from the Daphne Caruana Galizia murder investigation

A former high-ranking police officer implicated in leaking information on the Daphne Caruana Galizia murder investigation has been arrested.

Former police superintendent Ray Aquilina was arrested on Wednesday and is being interrogated over allegations that he leaked information on impending money laundering raids on murder middleman Melvin Theuma.

Theuma has testified in court how he was expecting to receive a list detailing, which of his properties would be raided in November 2019. The list had to come from Aquilina.

Police were planning to use the money laundering raid as cover to enter Theuma’s home to secure secretly-taped conversations bet­ween him and Yorgen Fenech, the man he alleges masterminded the car bombing on the journalist.

Theuma had been tipped off of his impending arrest by Aqulina, it is alleged, also knowing which police officer would interrogate him on a money laundering case. Theuma was arrested in November 2019.

But when he was arrested, it turned out that a different police inspector had been assigned to the case. Realising he would not be getting released from the money laundering charges, Theuma spilled the beans on the Caruana Galizia assassination and handed police the secret recordings he made of conversations with Fenech and others.

Theuma and Fenech business associate Johann Cremona reportedly discussed in some recordings a plan to get Aquilina to drop the planned money laundering charges.

The two men appeared confident that pressure from Interpol on the FIAU file on Theuma would be diverted by Commissioner of Police Lawrence Cutajar. 

“When the file is ready they will instruct the Commissioner… he doesn’t know it yet… he’ll pass it on to Raymond,” Cremona says, ostensibly referring to former economic crimes unit inspector Raymond Aquilina. 

Cremona also told Theuma he had suggested “am amount of cash” to be paid to Cutajar. “I’ll go and tell them, ‘here take this’. He doesn’t need to know from who: not Melvin, not Castille, not Kenneth [possibly Camilleri, the former Security Service detail at Castille], not Edwin [probably Brincat ‘il-Gojja’, a confidant of Theuma who knew Cutajar well]… he doesn’t need to know anything. As soon as that file arrives, he will obey: ‘Look here, that file goes to Aquilina.’” 

Cremona even suggested that Aquilina would tell Interpol: “We’ve already arrested him… they must show they have taken action with you even if there’s nothing… we don’t have trouble with Raymond.” 

In another recording in the same week of August 2019, Theuma and Cremona discussed the possibility that one of the accused currently in jail spills the beans. “The jury will come to an end and they wouldn’t have said a word. They won’t even reveal Cardona,” Theuma says – a possible reference to then minister Chris Cardona. 

In a September recording, Theuma was so determined not to be arrested on the feared money laundering charge, that he is told by Cremona to impart on Yorgen Fenech the importance of speaking to Keith Schembri about the matter. “I will be clear,” Cremona says. “I’ll say, ‘Listen Kenneth, don’t call me on Melvin. He is determined that he will not be picked up by the police. If they raid him, he will reveal everything he knows.”