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Keith Schembri’s Lawyers Refuse Interrogation Unless Conclusions Of Citizenship-Kickbacks Inquiry Are Published

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Lawyers of former Prime Minister’s chief of staff Keith Schembri are demanding that the conclusions of the magisterial inquiry into kickback from the citizenship-by-investment scheme be published.

Speaking to the press, lawyers Edward Gatt and Mark Vassallo said that interrogation will not continue until the conclusions are published.

“Before these are made public, we are not going to participate in the interrogation process,” the lawyers said.

The lawyers refused to comment on the case itself.

Schembri was arrested at 12.30am on 22nd September. Nexia BT’s Karl Cini and Brian Tonna are also under arrest, while the many others named in the court’s order to freeze assets of over 100 companies, and the people linked to them, will be called in over the coming days.

The inquiry was called on the request of former PN leader Simon Busuttil, following major reports on the issue from assassinated journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia.

According to a leaked report by the Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit (FIAU), Tonna transferred two €50,000 payments through the now-closed Pilatus Bank to Schembri.

Schembri is facing allegations that the payments were kickbacks related to the sale of Maltese citizenship to a family of three Russian nationals.

Both men have denied any wrongdoing, with Schembri claiming that the €100,000 was the repayment of a personal loan given to Tonna while the former underwent separation proceedings.

The loan was repaid through Willerby Trading, a British Virgin Islands shell company secretly owned by Tonna. Willerby Trading is named in the court order.

The same FIAU report also raised suspicions of the loan document presented to the bank to justify the payments after finding no trace of the original loan payment by Schembri to Tonna.

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