An offshore company allegedly used to forward €100,000 in kickbacks to the Prime Minister’s chief of staff, Keith Schembri, was struck off a company registry some months after it emerged Brian Tonna was its owner.
In a leaked e-mail acquired by German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung, Nexia BT’s Karl Cini asked in October 2016 for Willerby Trade to be struck off the British Virgin Islands’ company registry.
Mr Tonna’s ownership of Willerby was hidden behind nominees. The Panama Papers, published in April 2016, revealed that Mr Tonna, Nexia BT’s managing partner, owned both Willerby Trade and another BVI company called SPX Services, which Mr Cini also asked to be removed from the company register.
An investigation by the Maltese government’s anti-money-laundering agency deemed two payments totalling €100,000 made by Willerby to a Pilatus Bank account owned by Mr Schembri to be “suspicious”.
Willerby was used by Mr Tonna to bill wealthy