Two articles published by the Malta Independent on Sunday and its online edition, alleging that the Prime Minister’s chief of staff had made use of fraudulent documents to open companies in tax havens, have landed the paper with €8,000 in libel damages.
Two libel suits were filed: one was by Keith Schembri and Malcolm Scerri, general manager of Kasco Ltd, and the other by Nexia BT auditors Brian Tonna and Karl Cini.
Both cases stemmed from two articles entitled ‘Panama Papers: HSBC investigation expected into alleged fraudulent documents vouching for Keith Schembri and Malcolm Scerri’ and ‘Probe expected into alleged fraudulent documents vouching for Keith Schembri, Malcolm Scerri’.
The libel suits were filed against The Malta Independent on Sunday’s former editor Pierre Portelli, current editors David Lindsay and Stephen Calleja, arguing that the articles were defamatory.
The articles had followed up on a blog published by the same newspaper’s then-columnist, Daphne Caruana Galizia, claiming that