Attorney General Victoria Buttigieg must go - ADPD

The Green Party says that the recent performance of the AG is of concern because justice is being obstructed

Attorney General Victoria Buttigieg
Attorney General Victoria Buttigieg

ADPD- The Green Party said that Attorney General Victoria Buttigieg should tender her resignation and be removed from her position if she refuses.

In a press conference in Valletta on Saturday morning ADPD Deputy Chairperson Sandra Gauci said that under the previous Attorney General, Peter Grech, Malta was the only country not to take action after the Panama Papers’ revelations. She added that Grech gave the “criminals” ample time to clean up their act when he stopped the Police from raiding the Nexia BT offices.

Gauci insisted that the situation was worse under Victoria Buttigieg, highlighting how this week the prosecution led by the AG failed to submit the complete documentation regarding a European Arrest Warrant, which fact led to the dismissal of extradition procedures with against a man wanted in Italy in connection with drug trafficking.

“We have also had the case of the two lawyers accused of the attempted bribery of journalist Ivan Martin when the Office of the Attorney General ‘conveniently’ cited the wrong article in terms of the law which led to the Courts freeing them from the accusation,” Gauci said.

She said the AG was also responsible for the reduction of charges against a criminal accused of attempted homicide of members of the Police Corp, leading to a reduced prison sentence on condition that he reveals all the information he knew about the HSBC hold-up case. “But he did not reveal any information and still benefits from a reduced prison sentence.”

“One must agree with the Chamber of Advocates’ insistence that Victoria Buttigieg should not have been appointed Attorney General in the first place, due to her lack of experience in criminal law. The mammoth deficiencies being exposed under her remit confirm how right they were,” insisted Gauci.

“It is time that Parliament, cognizant of all that has been taking place, requests Victoria Buttigieg to tender her resignation. If she refuses she should be removed.”

ADPD Chairperson Carmel Cacopardo said that institutions should be left to operate freely in the country’s best interests but not to defend criminal cliques.

“The performance of the Office of the Attorney General in the past few months in particular is of utmost concern because instead of facilitating that justice is done we have its obstruction,” Cacopardo said.

He said that the Police Union had asked Buttigieg to tender her resignation as Attorney General after having approved the reduction of homicide charges against Daren Debono ‘it-Topo’ in exchange for information about the HSBC hold-up case. Debono got a reduced jail term but he did not reveal anything.

“Not only did she not resign, but Buttigieg has gone from one blunder to another. Parliament must take action now to remove her and appoint someone who will not continue to embarrass the nation,” Cacopardo said.

“The institutions that are there to safeguard our rights deserve all the respect they can get. However, how can we respect an institution that instead of defending our society continuously undermines it?”