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Carmelo Abela Claims To Have Forgotten Testifying About 2010 Failed HSBC Heist

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Minister within the Office of the Prime Minister Carmelo Abela has claimed to have forgotten testifying before the courts over his possible links to the failed 2010 heist. 

Abela has been linked with the botched heist that ended in a shootout with police after Vince Muscat, one of the men believed to have carried out the attempt on the bank, claimed to have information that could implicate both a sitting and a former minister in the robbery. 

Nationalist MP Jason Azzopardi had named Abela as the minister Muscat is referring to, claiming that he had been promised €300,000 for his role. Abela has vehemently denied the claims and has filed libel proceedings against Azzopardi. 

Abela had at the time been interrogated by the police, though not under caution, and had also testified in court about his role at the bank. 

Abela had access to security equipment used to generate key cards, suspected to have been used during the attempted robbery, the Times of Malta reports.

According to Abela’s testimony, which was seen by the paper, the minister, then an MP, had said that he did in fact have access to the equipment and would use it when his colleagues were on leave or sick leave. 

Abela was a senior insurance and statistics officer within the bank’s security department. 

“I do not remember testifying about this. I do not remember the police ever sending for me about the case since 2010,” he replied when asked about his testimony. 

Vince Muscat has pled guilty to his involvement in the assassination of Daphne Caruana Galizia and had been granted a presidential pardon in return for turning state witness in the case of the 2015 murder of Carmel Chircop. 

He has requested a second pardon in exchange for information about a host of other crimes, including the failed 2010 heist but this was rejected by the cabinet last month. 

Muscat’s alleged co-conspirators in the Caruana Galizia murder, Alfred and George Degiorgio, have also requested a pardon in order to reveal information about the same crimes. Their request was also rejected by the cabinet.

What do you make of Abela’s denial?

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