Joseph Muscat exchanged frequent text messages with Yorgen Fenech, the businessman accused of killing journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia, Lovin Malta can reveal.
After originally claiming to have last met Fenech over a year ago, the Prime Minister recently admitted to meeting him socially as recently as February but has refused to provide any further details.
Lovin Malta is now reliably informed that the pair also exchanged frequent text messages of a friendly nature, which Muscat has so far not disclosed.
The messages were sent when Fenech was already the prime suspect under investigation and Muscat was being fully briefed by the security services.
Lovin Malta also revealed last week that Muscat was named by Fenech in his first official police statement.
Muscat is currently defying widespread calls to step down immediately. He plans to stay on until mid-January after overseeing a leadership election race and conducting a farewell tour in various Maltese villages.
Lovin Malta sent questions to Muscat for his reaction about the messages but has so far received no response.
Other questions sent last week have also been left unanswered.
Fenech was on Saturday charged with complicity in the October 2017 assassination after he was denied a Presidential Pardon.
He was requesting a pardon to implicate Muscat’s Chief of Staff Keith Schembri who was forced to resign last week and was arrested in connection to the murder only to be released just before Cabinet decided to refuse Fenech’s pardon.
Fenech, one of the shareholders of Malta’s privatised power station, had illicit business dealings with Schembri and then Energy Minister Konrad Mizzi. These dealings had started to be revealed by Caruana Galizia before she was assassinated in a car bomb.
Muscat has always defended Schembri and Mizzi and only accepted their resignation last month.