David Casa calls upon Moneyval to look into Maltese government

Following the revelation of the owner of 17 Black, the target client of Panama companies belonging to Keith Schembri and Konrad Mizzi, Nationalist MEP David Casa wrote to MoneyVal, the Committee of Experts on the Evaluation of Anti-Money Laundering Measures, to look into government's laissez-faire attitude and lack of enforcement with regards to money laundering

Nationalist MEP David Casa
Nationalist MEP David Casa

David Casa has written to Moneyval, telling the committee about the latest revelations about the secret Dubai company 17 Black, which Reuters and Times of Malta reported that it belongs to Electrogas power station investor Yorgen Fenech.

Moneyval is currently conducting its 5th Round Evaluation into Malta's compliance with anti-money laundering laws. The Nationalist MEP wrote to the committee of experts on money-laundering, revealing the name of 17 Black's owner and the purpose of the secret Dubai company, that €150,000 a month were to reach Konrad Mizzi's and Keith Schembri's Panama companies.

"It has also emerged that the Maltese authorities have been informed of the identity of the owner of 17 Black for many months now and that no action appears to have been taken in order to cease criminal activity that is potentially ongoing," Casa wrote. The MEP also mentioned Nexia BT, which, he says, operated with impunity - an auditing firm that was shown to have misled the FIAU, withheld information and fabricated letters of engagement to ensure consistency of documents with public statements made by PEPs they serviced.

"Anti-money laundering laws are not worth the paper they are printed on unless they are enforced," he said. "It appears that when it comes to people close to the Maltese Prime Minister, enforcement is non-existent and the deficiencies are serious and systemic."

Casa himself was earlier accused by a former aide of inflating staff salaries to claim a bigger budget. The whistleblower had written to OLAF to bring the MEP to justice. As yet, no further information has been forthcoming from either side.