Malta minister quits over husband’s links to murder suspect

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A Maltese minister resigned on Monday as the country continued to be rocked by the investigation into the murder of journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia.

Justyne Caruana, Minister for Malta’s sister island of Gozo, quit after the Sunday Times of Malta revealed that her husband, former top police official, Silvio Valletta, had gone abroad to watch a football match with a murder suspect, Yorgen Fenech.

She tendered her resignation just one week after being sworn in as minister as part of new Prime Minister Robert Abela’s cabinet.

Valletta is a former deputy police commissioner, who also served on the board of Malta’s financial crimes investigative unit, the FIAU.

He was forced off the Caruana Galizia case in June 2019, retired in August and went abroad with Fenech one month later, to watch a Chelsea FC football match at Stanford Bridge.

He has said he did not know Fenech was a suspect in the murder at the time.

Malta’s Home Affairs Minister said on Sunday that the Police were investigating the links between the two men.

Fenech stands accused of complicity in the murder of Caruana Galizia, who was blown up in a car bomb assassination in October 2017.

He denies the charges and claims that the true murder mastermind was the right-hand man to former Prime Minister Joseph Muscat.

Muscat resigned last week following a public outcry over his office’s potential involvement in the murder investigation. (dpa/NAN)

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