Adrian Hillman will allegedly be brought to Malta as part of a new post-Brexit extradition agreement with the United Kingdom, sources have told Lovin Malta.
Hillman, who is the former managing director at Allied Newspapers, is expected to be charged in connection to a magisterial inquiry into a money-laundering scheme involving Keith Schembri, the Office of the Prime Minister’s former chief of staff.
Lovin Malta is informed that Hillman is currently living in the United Kingdom. His Twitter bio reads that he is currently a “Lecturer in Media Research, Political Communication” and is currently researching a PhD in the construction of news at Goldsmiths University.
Hillman has also lectured at the University of Malta and was appointed as the government’s representative on the board of trustees of the controversial American University of Malta.
He will be brought to Malta on the back of the UK-EU surrender agreement. It replaced the European Arrest Warrants in place while the UK was part of the EU and functions very similar to it.
The potential charges follow an inquiry into a leaked Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit report which found that Schembri had channelled over €650,000 to Hillman in suspicious payments between 2011 and 2015 in a deal which saw his company, Kasco, supply a printing press to Times of Malta in 2018.
It is believed that the funds were transferred via a number of offshore companies and accounts based in Gibraltar and Switzerland, as well as the infamous Pilatus Bank.
The inquiry was called following a request by former PN leader Simon Busuttil in 2017. Last week, Schembri and others tried to file a constitutional case to annul the inquiry, led by Magistrate Josette Demicoli, claiming that they were unfairly treated.
Several people have been brought in for questioning and are expected to be arraigned later today. Sources have suggested that people could start being charged at 3pm.
These included Schembri’s father, Alfie; his wife, Josette, Malcolm Scerri; who is the CEO of Kasco Group; Matthew Pace, Gianfranco Stellini and Lorraine Falzon of Zenith; Brian Tonna and Karl Cini of Nexia BT; and Vince Buhagiar, the managing director of Allied Newspapers Ltd before Hillman.
You can follow all the latest developments on Lovin Malta’s live blog.
Just a few days ago, Schembri broke the news that he will be charged over the conclusions of the inquiry, claiming that the inquiry was a ploy by the “establishment” to harm the Labour Party.
“In a few more days I will be charged. Not because I committed a crime. For the establishment, the ‘crime’ of which I am guilty is my participation as part of a team led by Joseph Muscat which led to a series of electoral victories for the party I love so much,” Schembri wrote on Facebook.
Schembri served as chief of staff under Joseph Muscat’s administration, resigning in disgrace following the political crisis that erupted following Yorgen Fenech’s arrest in connection to the assassination of journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia.
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