Police want time on Egrant investigations

Police sources have told MaltaToday that the Egrant inquiry contained details that merited a focussed investigation ‘without political exposure’

The voluminous inquiry has only been forwarded by the Attorney General to Joseph Muscat and Owen Bonnici
The voluminous inquiry has only been forwarded by the Attorney General to Joseph Muscat and Owen Bonnici

The police will not ‘rush’ to prosecute people implicated in the Egrant inquiry while the Attorney General resists the Opposition leader’s constitutional case to release the full report.

Police investigations are ongoing but investigators told MaltaToday they are concerned that the Egrant report will be inevitably leaked to the public once it is released to third parties.

“Once the persons mentioned specifically in the Egrant inquiry are charged, the inquiry report will be made available to their lawyers, and there is no doubt the report will be instantly leaked to third parties and the media,” a senior officer who spoke on condition of anonymity, told MaltaToday.

Magistrate Aaron Bugeja concluded the inquiry last July but only the conclusions were published.

The AG had given a copy of the full report to the Prime Minister, and in court last week, it transpired that he also handed a copy to Justice Minister Owen Bonnici.

Opposition leader Adrian Delia has initiated court proceedings asking to be given a full copy of the inquiry.

Police sources said the report contained the banking details of private individuals, who availed themselves of the services of Pilatus Bank.

“Once their names get associated with the bank, they will be tainted and risk public exposure even though they have done nothing wrong.”

The officer said the Egrant inquiry contained details that merited a focussed investigation “without political exposure”.

At least two individuals who testified in the Egrant inquiry could have committed perjury, as revealed by conclusions referring to the contradictions of different witnesses and their intention to mislead the public on the Egrant allegations.

The Egrant inquiry found that the bank never held any accounts for Joseph Muscat and his wife. It also found no existence of bank accounts that belonged to Egrant, the third Panama company set up by Nexia BT alongside those for minister Konrad Mizzi and the Prime Minister’s chief of staff Keith Schembri.

 Independently from the inquiry it had been ascertained that Pilatus did hold accounts for Schembri.

An inquiry is still ongoing into allegations made by former Opposition leader Simon Busuttil that Schembri was in receipt of kickbacks from the passport scheme. The money was alleged to have been paid into his Pilatus account.

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