The family of the late Daphne Caruana Galizia has filed a suspicious transaction report with the Latvian authorities which names people the assassinated journalist had investigated for money laundering and whom the family believes are connected to her subsequent murder.
“We hope that this report brings new evidence to light, helps authorities across Europe bring criminals to justice and helps authorities prevent more murders by taking action to end impunity for the crime and criminal networks that Daphne Caruana Galizia investigated and exposed,” the family said in a statement. “We also hope that others will recognise that they too are able to force accountability and will be inspired to take the necessary action to end impunity and restore the rule of law.”
Contacted by Lovin Malta, a representative of the family chose not to reveal the identities of the people named in the report, only stating that not all of them are Maltese.
However, their statement gives a clear indication of their line of thought
The Caruana Galizias cited the unsolved murder of Martins Bunkus, a Latvian lawyer who fought for the liquidation of Latvian banks implicated in money laundering. These included ABLV Bank, a bank that is in the process of liquidation following instructions by the European Central Bank.
ABLV was last year named by the Daphne Project as the bank which wired €1.1 million to 17 Black, a Dubai company owned by Maltese businessman Yorgen Fenech which was named as the target client for the infamous Panama companies of Tourism Minister Konrad Mizzi and the Prime Minister’s chief of staff Keith Schembri.
An FIAU report found that 17 Black had received at least three payments – one of €161,000 from Maltese local agent for the tanker supplying gas to the LNG power station and two separate payments amounting to €1.1 million from Azeri security guard Rufat Baratzada.
“We now know, as a result of the Daphne Project’s investigations, that Latvia’s ABLV Bank, like Pilatus Bank in Malta, was a service provider to a money laundering network implicating PEPs in Malta and in Azerbaijan,” the Caruana Galizias said
“Daphne Caruana Galizia was left alone to document the crimes facilitated by Pilatus Bank and the subsequent cover up of those crimes by Malta’s government. She refused to give up or to give in and people in the network she investigated resorted to assassination.”
“Martins Bunkus, a Latvian lawyer who fought for ABLV Bank to be liquidated involuntarily, was also murdered in a well-planned attack, just seven months later. His murder, like Daphne Caruana Galizia’s, remains unsolved.”
“That Maltese and Latvian regulators allowed Pilatus Bank and ABLV Bank to continue operating even as evidence of serious crimes committed by those institutions was brought to light shows that the EU’s weakest states are facilitating crime throughout Europe’s internal market.”
“The fact that two people attempting to force effective oversight were murdered in well-planned attacks, within less than a year of each other, and that in both cases the people who ordered the murders are still unknown, shows that Europe is experiencing a crime and corruption emergency and it is only a matter of time before someone else is killed.”
“As Daphne Caruana Galizia’s family, we are committed to achieving full justice for her and for her investigations. We believe that the only way out of the crime and corruption emergency is to continue forcing accountability and to activate judicial authorities, though the responsibility for achieving this is not ours alone.”
Cover photo: Left: Murdered Latvian journalist Martins Bunkus, Right: Murdered Maltese journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia