Home Affairs Minister denies Joseph Muscat contacted him over Iosif Galea’s arrest

PN MP Karol Aquilina claimed Byron Camilleri received a call from Joseph Muscat informing him of Galea's arrest in Italy

Home Affairs Minister Byron Camilleri categorically denied being contacted by former prime minister Joseph Muscat over Iosif Galea’s arrest in Italy.

In a parliamentary question to the minister on Monday, PN MP Karol Aquilina asked whether Camilleri received a call from Joseph Muscat informing him of Galea’s arrest.

Galea was arrested in Italy where he was to join his partner, an assistant of Michelle Muscat, also on holiday with husband Joseph Muscat, the former prime minister.

Camilleri flatly denied the accusation in his parliamentary response.

In a previous parliamentary question, Aquilina pointed out that the father of Camilleri’s chief of staff serves as Michelle Muscat’s chauffer.

“Since the father of your chief of staff is Michelle Muscat’s chauffer, what did you discuss with your chief of staff with regards to Iosif Galea,” Aquilina asked.

Camilleri avoided the question, insisting instead that the accusation was an attack on his staff’s family.

“Are we to say that because you are the brother of NGO Repubblika’s president Robert Aquilina, that the Nationalist Party and Repubblika are one and the same?” Camilleri asked.

The minister insisted that he wants a serious and independent investigation into the case of Iosif Galea. Despite being the subject of a European Arrest Warrant, Galea was allowed to travel from Malta multiple times, with investigating officers granting him an exemption to leave the island.

While Galea was arrested in Italy in mid-May, he had already been arrested by Maltese officials in January in a joint operation by the cybercrime unit and the Financial Crime Investigations Department.

It was only after Galea’s arrest that the Maltese police issued their own EAW, reportedly a face-saving measure that emerged in the press a week later. Later it was made known that Maltese police had been all the time aware of the German EAW.