Still from the police footage of the arrests of the three murder suspects last December
The police have vehemently denied a claim by PN MP Jason Azzopardi that they had cast a blind eye after they found out that a mole had allegedly tipped off the three men suspected of murdering Daphne Caruana Galizia prior to their arrest last December.
In a statement issued late last night, the police warned Azzopardi that his allegations risk hindering the case they are building against the three suspects and possible further developments into the murder.
Azzopardi is representing the Caruana Galiza family in parte civile in the case against the three murder suspects – George Degiorgio, his brother Alfred and their friend Vince Muscat.
Suspicions of a potential police mole have been making the rounds, primarily based on how the suspects had thrown their phones in the sea before the police arrived and how one of them had scribbled his girlfriend’s number on his arm.
In Parliament last night, Azzopardi accused Police Commissioner Lawrence Cutajar of colluding with criminality and demanded his instant resignation.
Azzopardi named the alleged police mole as sergeant Aldo Cassar, who used to work in the criminal intelligence unit but was recently transferred to the Rapid Intervention Unit.
Jason Azzopardi named Aldo Cassar as the alleged mole
Citing police sources, Azzopardi said Cassar had been transferred to the RIU after the Police Commissioner discovered he was the alleged mole.
Soon after the Prime Minister’s spokesperson Kurt Farrugia denounced the story as a lie, the police issued an official statement to dismiss the PN MP.
“As already explained to Dr Azzopardi when, in his role as lawyer parte civile in the case of the three suspects, he claimed that the Malta Police had received such an allegation, no such allegation was brought to the attention of the Malta Police on a possible leak into the murder investigation,” the police said.
“It was further clarified that the steps taken in regard to the mentioned police sergeant have nothing to do with any suggested tip off on the operation that led to the arrest of the three accused. Furthermore, the said sergeant was in no way privy to any information related to the said operation.”
“With regards to the accusations that there were intercepts on the suspects that gave indications of such a tip off, once again Dr Azzopardi as lawyer PC should know that all pertinent information was presented in court during the case against the three accused. The Malta police refutes that there is any evidence to sustain the allegation that the forces were tipped off with the murder before it happened.”
However, Azzopardi stood by his version of the story, telling Kurt Farrugia he was wrongly informed and questioning which police official had denied the story to him.