The Malta Independent 18 June 2024, Tuesday
View E-Paper

Contempt of court: Judge orders criminal action against Mark Camilleri

Thursday, 23 March 2023, 15:49 Last update: about 2 years ago

A judge has ruled that criminal action be taken by the police against author Mark Camilleri for breaching a court ban by publishing thousands of messages between Labour MP Rosianne Cutajar and Yorgen Fenech.

The chats exchange published on Tuesday revealed an intimate relationship between the former parliamentary secretary and the man now accused of being a mastermind in the assassination of journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia.

ADVERTISEMENT

Cutajar was at the time publicly defending Fenech when accusations were being levelled against him.

The day after the exchange was published on Camilleri’s website, Cutajar’s lawyers filed an urgent application to request an investigation, arguing that the publication breached a ban imposed by the court in Fenech’s case in relation to the journalist’s murder.

Madam Justice Edwina Grima in November 2021 had banned the publication of all typed and electronic data in Fenech’s case file. Cutajar’s lawyers argued that Camilleri had breached laws prohibiting publication of such documents.

Allowing their dissemination for any other purpose extraneous to the Caruana Galizia murder case amounted to a breach of Cutajar’s fundamental rights to respect for private family life and personal correspondence, the lawyers argued.

Cutajar’s lawyers also delivered a legal letter to the Attorney General requesting her to inform the court about the publication of the Whatsapp messages.

They called on the AG to act without delay. The AG acted promptly and later on Wednesday, Madam Justice Grima ordered the police commissioner to investigate whether the the publication of these messages had been prohibited by the court.

The Police Commissioner informed the judge that investigations had confirmed that Camilleri’s publication had breached the November 2021 ban.

In light of that information the court ordered the Police Commissioner to take criminal action against Camilleri before the Magistrates’ Courts for contempt of court.

Camilleri, who lives abroad, wrote on his blog earlier Thursday that he is "out of reach" of the police.

He said that his equipment is safe and he does not need a team of lawyers to tell him what to do.

“I’m free to write my thoughts without any effective repercussions and I can recollect my thoughts and think about what has just happened in peace. Bliss," he said.

 

  • don't miss