Opposition leader Adrian Delia’s alleged laundering of money from a Soho prostitution ring in the early 2000s forms part of an ongoing police investigation, the Sunday Times of Malta has reported.
Police sources told The Times that an intelligence report compiled by the Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit (FIAU), recommending a criminal investigation into alleged laundering of dirty money, was handed to them in March.
However, Delia said he has not contacted by the police yet and has no idea whether or not they are even investigating these allegations.
“I find it bizarre that I have not been contacted if an investigation has been ongoing for so many months,” he said, arguing that his only involvement in the case was as a lawyer to Eucharist Bajada.
Last year, now-murdered journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia wrote that Bajada had rented out Soho properties to his younger brother Emanuel Bajada and his wife Eva Bajada, who then sub-let them to other landlords. One of the properties, in Greek Street, was raided by the British police in 2003 and the couple who ran it was jailed for entrapping Eastern European women to London with the promise of domestic work but then forcing them to work as prostitutes by threatening to kill their families.
According to Caruana Galizia, the pimps who ran the brothels would pass on £2,000 in cash to Eve Bajada as ‘rent’ and she would then deposit it in smaller sums to a Jersey bank account owned by Adrian Delia. Delia would then transfer that same money to bank accounts owned by two offshore companies, one in the Bahamas and one in the Marshall Islands, owned by Eucharist Bajada. Delia was director of the Bahamas company, along with Economy Minister Chris Cardona – back then a Labour MP.
In December 2003, the Bajadas sent a legal letter to Delia after some £1.4 million which he should have paid to the offshore companies went missing. Shortly after, Emanuel Bajada was convicted in Malta of running two brothels out of guest houses in Sliema and St Julian’s and chose Chris Cardona as his defence lawyer. The house in Greek Street was later transferred to Mark Barbara, now working as Cardona’s chauffeur, and later to a BVI offshore company with an unknown UBO.
The allegations have surfaced again in recent weeks, with Prime Minister Joseph Muscat challenging Delia to request a magisterial inquiry into the claims and Tourism Minister Konrad Mizzi urging journalists to scrutinise the Opposition leader over his alleged involvement in a prostitution racket.