Pardoned middleman Melvin Theuma says he never met former Police Chief Cutajar

Protesters hold pictures of Daphne Caruana Galizia during a demonstration to demand justice over the journalist's murder, outside the Office of the Prime Minister at Auberge de Castle, in Valletta, Malta, November 29, 2019. REUTERS/Yara Nardi

Tista' taqra bil- Malti.

The compilation of evidence against Yorgen Fenech, accused of complicity in the assassination of journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia, continues today.

15:01 Thank you for following us.
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14:58 The court session ends here.
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14:54 Magistrate Montebello wants the court to meet on Thursday at noon.
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14:49 Magistrate Montebello asks Melvin Theuma to re-enter the courtroom and again take the witness stand.
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14:48 Melvin Theuma's testimony ends here.
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14:45 Theuma is recalling the time when Fenech had called him to drive him to Girgenti because he had a party organised by the then Prime Minister Joseph Muscat.
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14:40 Lawyer Azzopardi asked Theuma to confirm if on the 16th of October 2018 it was the only 24 hrs that Fenech did not communicate with him. Theuma confirms and says that it is probably he was worried and spent a day in bed on the 1st anniversary since the assassination of Daphne Caruana Galizia.
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14:28 Theuma said that Fenech told him that under the Labour government they would be safe and they would not be caught.
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14:26 I realized that if Fenech was a true friend he would not have put me through all this trouble, said Theuma.
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14:17 Theuma said that he had told Fenech to tell them to not eliminate him. He continued to explain that if Fenech and Schembri planned to eliminate him he pleaded to Fenech to not do it.
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14:14 Inspector Arnaud is now referring to a conversation on the 17th of October 2018.
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14:08 Yorgen Fenech had also provided Theuma with expensive jewellery including diamonds to sell and also photos of two lands to so that they buy them as a joint venture, testified Theuma.

Theuma said in court that it was in Yorgen's interest to keep him happy so as not to provide the pen drives to the Police.
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14:03 "I was convinced that Fenech and Schembri wanted to eliminate me" – Melvin Theuma
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14:00 I would have been better dead than alive – " Kont l-aħħar stage but he used to calm me down saying that all will be well" – Theuma.
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13:58 He also said that he was ready to get into some sort of trouble to enter into jail and talk to the 3 accused of Daphne's killing.
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13:56 Theuma recalls how Fenech had told him that he would provide the De Giorgios with an international phone line.

This never happened said Theuma.
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13:50 Theuma said that Fenech had asked him to stay as security in front of Keith Schembri's house because Schembri does not trust any person.

Lawyer Azzopardi clarified that so this means that Keith Schembri did not trust the police, as security in front of his house, but trusted Yorgen Fenech to asked the middleman in Daphne's murder to stay as security. Melvin Theuma confirmed this.
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13:49 Lawyer Azzopardi asked Theuma to confirm if he had sent an e-mail to Joseph Muscat's personal e-mail addresses.
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13:46 Theuma testified that he was not sure if he had asked Fenech to provide him with the birth date of the then Prime Minister Joseph Muscat so that he could write them for lotto drawings.
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13:41 Theuma said that between himself and Johann Cremona they used to refer to Keith Schembri as 'KK'.
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13:40 Theuma says that he is 99.9% sure it was Yorgen Fenech who informed him about his arrest on the 16th of November.
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13:35 Inspector Arnaud clarified that it was Theuma that asked Fenech to talk to Lawrence Cutajar, the former Police Commissioner, to not arrest his partner and daughter.
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13:31 In one of the messages, Theuma says that he cannot sleep even though he is taking anti-depressants.

Fenech also told him he was not able to sleep for two nights in a row.
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13:28 Theuma had also told Fenech that is was to face some hard times as he was to be arrested on the 16th of November in relation to money laundering.
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13:21 Between the messages Theuma had also called Fenech who told him he is doing his best to get them both out of the situation. Theuma says he believes it was Keith Schembri who was helping Yorgen.

Theuma said that he really was tired of living like that.
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13:20 Theuma got emotional while Lawyer Jason Azzopardi is reading the messages.
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13:17 Lawyer Azzopardi said that in the exchanged messages he noticed that Theuma is referring to other people too.
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13:15 In one of the messages, Fenech wrote to Theuma that he does not understand why he does not trust him and told him that they will manage to get out of this.
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13:12 Lawyer Jason Azzopardi is asking questions to Theuma on messages exchanged on the 12th of November 2019.
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13:11 He is provided with a transcript of the exchanged messages.
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13:09 Melvin Theuma is once again asked to enter the courtroom and take the witness stand.
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13:06 A court expert has presented to the court documents regarding the exchange of text messages between Yorgen Fenech and Melvin Theuma.
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13:05 We are back in session.
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12:31 We are waiting for Magistrate Montebello to enter the courtroom.
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12:10 The court suspends the sitting for a few minutes.
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11:59 Melvin Theuma said that Fenech had told him that Vince Muscat was to reveal everything in order to receive the Presidential Pardon.
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11:56 Theuma said he never discussed the murder with Keith Schembri.
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11:50 "I concluded that Keith Schembri is involved in the murder because it was being reported that he was receiving money from Fenech through the power station project" – Theuma.

Theuma also said that once, when Fenech was abroad his phone was switched off and decided to go next to Castille to see if he could see Keith Schembri or Kenneth Camilleri ask them to tell Yorgen Fenech to switch on his phone.

Theuma also said that Fenech always told him that Schembri is a friend of his.
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11:47 Theuma said that the recordings are only conversations between himself and Fenech and himself and Johann Cremona.
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11:43 Theuma said that he learned how to record conversations through his partner's daughter.

She showed him once how to transfer the recordings from his phone on to a laptop and then to a pen drive.

"I always kept the recordings to myself" – said Theuma.
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11:38 Magistrate Montebello said that this means that today will not be the last time Theuma will testify if these recordings are to be presented to the court.
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11:35 Inspector Keith Aranud is saying that there is a set of other recordings which the Police is still investigating.
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11:34 Theuma is asked to leave the courtroom for a few minutes.
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11:32 Theuma has also testified that he believes that Keith Schembri is also involved in the murder but he only knows one person who ordered the assassination, that is Yorgen Fenech.

Theuma also said that this is also mentioned in other recordings yet to be heard.
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11:27 He had also asked Fenech to talk to the Police Commissioner."Kellmu lil ta Hal Luqa"

Theuma also recalled how his friend Edwin Brincat had talked to the Police Commissioner about a fine.

His friend then told him that the Police Commissioner knew about the recordings.
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11:24 Theuma is also saying that he asked Fenech to do something as his partner and children were not involved in all this. Fenech told him he will do all possible but he cannot change the date he was to be arrested, the 16th of November 2019.
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11:20 One of the places that the police did not inspect were his 2 horse sheds. Theuma said one is empty and illegal migrants live in his other horse shed.
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11:17 One time before he was arrested Johann Cremona told him he would provide him with the questions he will be asked by the Police and the places they will inspect.

He never received such information, said Theuma and on the eve of his arrest he argued with Fenech.
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11:12 During the same year, he was arrested his bank account at HSBC was closed and a sanction letter for an apartment he wanted to buy was withdrawn from BOV and that Johann Cremona told him that he is in a lot of trouble in relation to money laundering.

He said that he was thinking that all this was happening to him because of Daphne's murder.

Theuma also said that Fenech told him that he would give him the money so as not to lose the apartment he wanted to buy in San Gwann.
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11:03 Theuma is saying that on the day he was arrested and wanted to speak to Inspector Arnaud, he did not have any idea of what a presidential pardon is because he only wanted to tell the truth about who ordered the assassination of Daphne Caruana Galizia. "I would rather be dead than living the life I was living. I was depressed and even Yorgen knew I was fell in depression. In fact, he gave me €5,000 to go for a holiday." said Theuma.

"Yorgen had also given me anti-depressants"

"Yorgen is a lion and I was a mosquito," said Theuma

Theuma also testified that Fenech knew a lot of people and he only knew him. He said he was so scared as he was not sure the information given to him by Fenech was correct.
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10:57 Theuma is saying that he was so worried that he also wanted to talk to Matthew Caruana Galizia about everything and also wanted to speak to the Archbishop to seek help and guidance. He also said he used to talk to his friend, Edwin Brincat.
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10:46 Another recording is being heard. Theuma does not remember when the conversation took place. But he is sure it took place after the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia.
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10:41 Theuma clarified that all this information was provided to him by Yorgen Fenech.
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10:34 Theuma said that on the day the car of ic Chippy was exploded, himself and Fenech were to travel to France.
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10:32 He also said that when he used to ask Yorgen Fenech what will happen to them if they pin the murder on them, Theuma said that Fenech used to tell him that he would take care of the matter.
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10:28 Theuma is still not able to understand a particular part of the recorded conversation. But Police Inspector Keith Arnaud decided he would still proceed with his questions.

Arnaud asked Theuma how he felt when the information was released concerning the involvement of other people. Theuma said that he used to feel relieved.
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10:15 The recordings are being replayed over and over again as Theuma is not able to understand.
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10:09 Theuma has been ordered to go down the witness stand as he is not able to listen well to the recordings and the questions he is being asked as perspex have been attached to the witness stand.
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09:56 Theuma is saying that regarding all the mobile phones found in the sea near the potato shed in Marsa, he was told that they had also found the phones related to other murders including the HSBC one but they were not to reveal anything and prominent people are involved.

Melvin Theuma also said that this information was either provided to him by Yorgen Fenech or Johann Cremona.

Also, Keith Schembri and Silvio Valletta used to feed information to Fenech, testified Theuma.
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09:53 Theuma said that he does not know, until today, if the police had found his mobile phone in the sea near the potato sheds in Marsa.
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09:50 The recordings being heard today are the same ones heard last Monday so that certain inaccuracies in the transcripts can be corrected.
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09:48 Theuma has been provided with a set of headphones to better listen to the recordings.
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09:44 Melvin Theuma has entered the courtroom.
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09:39 Magistrate Montebello has ordered for the recordings to be heard again by pardoned middleman Melvin Theuma and that he confirms what is being said in the recordings. In this way, the transcripts can be corrected.
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09:32 Lawyer Azzopardi said that it is in the interest of everyone to listen and have the transcripts in full.
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09:29 Police inspector Keith Arnaud and Lawyer Jason Azzopardi said that in the transcripts there are "chunks" of the conversations recorded by Theuma, missing.
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09:28 Magistrate Montebello said that today will be the last time that Melvin Theuma will be asked to testify.
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09:26 Magistrate Rachel Montebello has entered the courtroom.
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09:23 He also said that Fenech told him that when the Degiorgios were inside the CCF van, after one of the court sittings, the guards inside the van recorded the Degiorgios saying that they will implicate Chris Cardona in all this.
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09:22 During the last court sitting Melvin Theuma said that Fenech told him that David Gatt said that if the Degiorgios would name Chris Cardona he (Gatt) would be ready to kill them.
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09:16 Today's court sitting was expected to start at 9 am.
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09:10 Five security officers from the Corradino Correction Facility (CCF) are inside the courtroom.
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09:07 Yorgen Fenech has entered the courtroom.
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08:49 Yorgen Fenech's defence lawyers are Marion Camilleri and Gianluca Caruana Curran and Charles Mercieca whilst the prosecution is being led by inspectors Keith Arnaud and Kurt Zahra, assisted by the Attorney General.

Lawyer Jason Azzopardi is appearing parte civile for the Caruana Galizia family.
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08:48 The middleman in Daphne Caruana Galizia’s murder, Melvin Theuma will testify again as the court will go through more of his recorded conversations with Fenech.
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08:45 Good morning.

Welcome to Newsbook.com.mt live blog.

We are live from courtroom 22.
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