The Malta Independent 12 August 2020, Wednesday

Caruana Galizia family request Magistrate Lia to recuse herself from Fenech’s case

Tuesday, 3 December 2019, 12:40 Last update: about 9 months ago

The family of Daphne Caruana Galizia is asking Magistrate Nadine Lia to abstain or recuse herself from the compilation of evidence regarding Yorgen Fenech, who was recently charged in connection to the assassination of the journalist.

The compilation of evidence must begin before December 15. Magistrate Lia was selected by lot. The Caruana Galizia family are parte civile  in the case.

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Magistrate Lia’s father-in-law, lawyer Paul Lia, is the personal lawyer of Prime Minister Joseph Muscat. Fenech has claimed that the PM's former chief of staff, Keith Schembri, was behind the Caruana Galizia murder and said that he has incriminating information about a variety of top government ministers in Muscat’s government.

The family, through their lawyers Jason Azzopardi, Eve Borg Costanzi and Therese Comodini Cachia, argued that they expected the Magistrate to abstain from the case, however noted that this did not happen, and also noted that the case was appointed for tomorrow 9am.

Given this situation, the family have asked the Magistrate to recuse herself from the case, arguing that facts and evidence in the public domain are intimately and intrinsically tied to the Office of the Prime Minister, the Prime Minister and his former Chief of Staff, whose father-in-law is their legal consultant and defence.

The family argued that justice needs to be done, and also be seen to be done.

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