Criminal lawyer and former PN MP Franco Debono has argued there is enough evidence in the public domain to draw the conclusion that the Panama company Egrant belongs to Prime Minister Joseph Muscat or someone close to him.
“Until an investigation is held to establish who the owner of Egrant actually is, the accessible evidence so far is enough to justify that it must belong to Muscat or to someone close to him,” Debono wrote in a blogpost. “It is in Muscat’s own interest for such an investigation to be held if he wants to banish the shadow that hangs over him and those close to him.”
“Political judgement and legal judgement are not the same thing!”
Debono is a former Nationalist MP who has at different times been a vocal critic of both the previous Nationalist government and the current Labour government. His comments are telling in light of Debono being the current Commissioner of Laws who is entrusted to oversee Malta’s constitutional reform. He was appointed to that position by the current Muscat-led administration.
Debono penned his blogpost hours after Muscat testified in court that he is willing to drop a libel he had instigated against Daphne Caruana Galizia over her Egrant story so long as the assassinated journalist’s family admit the story was false. To back up his argument, the Prime Minister referred to last year’s magisterial inquiry, which had found no evidence linking Muscat or his family to Panama company Egrant Inc., and which cast doubts on the testimony of key witness Maria Efimova as well as Caruana Galizia’s claims.
However, the Caruana Galizia family has spurned this offer, arguing it won’t “concede to extortion from public servants”.
Joseph Muscat breaks into tears after an inquiry found no proof that Egrant belongs to his family
“Far from being a closed chapter, I predict that Egrant will once again be a main theme in the upcoming MEP elections,” Debono wrote. “Muscat should stop playing hide and seek. I have known him since Form 2C and he never struck me as being particularly brilliant. I feel sorry for him but this constant evasiveness is now tiring everyone.”
“Daphne had enough material in her possession with which to destroy Labour. I have respect for Labour and for the thousands of PL supporters who showed me and still show me respect. However, the reason everyone respects me is because they realise and appreciate the way I had spoken truth to my party, the Nationalist Party. I will continue speaking the truth, and the truth is that Daphne had enough material with which to metaphorically destroy Labour.”
“Her problem was that she either didn’t have a strategy or that she had a completely wrong strategy and wasn’t so familiar with the workings of the judicial system.”
“Pawlu Lia [the Prime Minister’s lawyer] can sue me for libel when he wants, but with all the facts in the public domain, I have a right to reach the political conclusion that all the facts and circumstantial evidence in the public domain indicate that Egrant either belongs to Joseph Muscat or to someone very close to him.”