Five arrested for exporting vessels to Libya

Joseph Giordimaina

Tista' taqra bil- Malti.

Five men were arraigned in court after allegedly exporting two rigid-hulled inflatable boat (RHIB) to Libya in breach of EU sanctions.

The men were arrested following an investigation by the Anti-Terrorism Squad. The Police received information that a Malta-registered company had exported two vessels without the necessary authorization.

The vessels were allegedly going to be used to evacuate workers of a UAE-based company in Libya in case the situation escalates.

The men were charged before Magistrate Victor Axiak. They pleaded not guilty to the charges brought against them. The court upheld a bail request.

Those charged in court include the owner of the chartering company, a 41-year-old man of Mellieħa and four employees – two men 63 and 45 years old of Mellieħa, a 47-year-old of Floriana and a 44-year-old man of St Paul’s Bay. Charges were also issued against the company.

The men and the company were charged with exporting RHIBS to Libya without the necessary authorization by the Maltese authorities.

Police Superintendent George Cremona who is responsible of the Anti-Terrorism Squad that the investigation was primarily focused on the breach of EU sanctions, however, possible money-laundering offences. An attachment order for financial information has been requested. Rogatory letters have been sent to overseas jurisdictions.