Schembri, investigated for homicide and tampering with evidence, allowed to leave country

Former chief of staff now investigated for homicide and tampering with evidence has been granted leave for a three-day family holiday

Former chief of staff Keith Schembri
Former chief of staff Keith Schembri

The Maltese police has granted the former chief of staff to Malta’s prime minister, Keith Schembri, permission to travel on a family holiday.

Keith Schembri travelled abroad on Thursday after police granted him permission to take his family abroad on "a three-day getaway". 

The police had been contacted by Schembri’s legal team, who informed them that the former chief of staff was planning a trip to Italy. Schembri has been released from interrogation and not placed on police bail, allowing him to do as he pleases.

Press reports said he was seen on Thursday evening “at the VIP lounge” of Malta International Airport.

So far police have been unable to extract evidence from Schembri’s mobile phone after the former chief of staff claimed he had lost it. The revelation was made in court as the compilation of evidence against Yorgen Fenech continued. Fenech is charged with being the mastermind behind the assassination of Daphne Caruana Galizia.

Schembri was arrested at 5:30am on 26 November. Just a few hours before, Schembri had a late-night meeting with Joseph Muscat at the Prime Minister’s private residence in Burmarrad.

Schembri is also being investigated for “homicide, tampering with evidence and other offences” and these were being dealt with by other police units, the lead investigator in the Caruana Galizia assassination told the court.

Schembri had been arrested for 50 hours before being released from police custody. He was interrogated over his alleged connection with the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia. In court, Keith Arnaud insisted that investigations into Schembri are ongoing.

READ ALSO: Keith Schembri resigns, taken in for questioning at police headquarters

Schembri has been indicated by suspect Yorgen Fenech as an informant on police investigations, something that the former chief of staff has denied.

Fenech became a suspect in the murder investigation around August and September 2018. Fenech’s name was mentioned during police briefings with the Prime Minister in Castille but nobody knew at the time that Schembri and Fenech were close friends.