MaltaToday previous editions

MaltaToday 6 October 2021 MIDWEEK

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 1 of 15

2 NEWS maltatoday | WEDNESDAY • 6 OCTOBER 2021 2 NEWS 25 new COVID-19 cases were registered on Tuesday, figures published by the Health Ministry show. No new deaths were registered in the last 24-hours, with the total number of deaths standing at 459. Active cases stand at 292 after 27 recoveries were registered. There are currently eight coronavirus patients being cared for at Mater Dei Hospital, none are in the ITU. Until yesterday, 831,113 vaccine doses were ad- ministered, of which 17,597 were booster doses. Hospitalisations increase by two, 25 new infections registered COVID-19 NICOLE MEILAK A money laundering prosecution against restaurateurs Florinda Sultana and Al- bert Buttigieg continued on Tuesday. Police officers from the money laun- dering unit testified on their findings. Sultana is the daughter-in-law of Dar- ren Debono, who is facing separate mon- ey laundering charges over a €30 million fuel smuggling ring from Libya to Italy. A former clerk at Debono's company World Water Fisheries testified seeing Sultana reportig to Debono; while An- thony McKay and his son Marvin tes- tified about the transfer of ownership of the Valletta restaurant Debono ran, Scoglitti, now named Porticello since its blacklisting by the United States treasury department. McKay said he leased out the restaurant to Debono due to a debt with World Wa- ter Fisheries. The contract was eventual- ly transferred onto another individual. Another witness, Saviour Attard, testi- fied on a loan contract with Porticello's last chef patron, Marvin Schembri, to his company MS1 Catering Limited. Schem- bri later resigned and transferred his shares to Florinda Sultana in February 2020, who assumed the debt of the loan. Lawyer Stefano Filletti was defence counsel. Inspectors Joseph Xerri, James Turner and Omar Caruana prosecuted, assisted by AG lawyer Antoine Agius Bonnici. The next sitting will take place on 9 No- vember at 12:30pm. Witnesses testify on Florinda Sultana's company operations. Witnesses testify on Florinda Sultana's company operations Former Porticello chef under freezing order Albert Buttigieg (left) and Florinda Sultana (right) MATTHEW VELLA THE former chef-patron at Porticello, the Valletta restaurant operated by Darren Debono, is the subject of a freezing order, according to court documents. The Asset Recovery Bureau announced the freezing order on 9 June 2021, given by the Court of Criminal Inquiry presided over by Magistrate Natasha Galea Sciberras. The inquiry named Marvin Schembri, 44, and chef Patrizio Cassar, 40, as subjects of the temporary attachment order. MaltaToday understands that Marvin Schembri had been a chef-patron at the Valletta restaurant Sciacca Grill, a restau- rant owned by Kasco Foods, a company be- longing to former OPM chief of staff Keith Schembri. The restaurant was later sold to a new operator. Marvin Schembri later was a shareholder in the operation running the Capo Crudo restaurant in Valletta. But soon after he also took up a head posi- tion at the Porticello restaurant, a premises under American trading sanctions due its ownership's role in a €30 million oil smug- gling operation. Since then, several other restaurateurs connected to Darren Debono, have been charged with money laundering offences. Schembri was at one point the founding shareholder of the company MS1 Catering, which ran the Porticello operation, before transferring his shares to Debono's daugh- ter-in-law Florinda Sultana in January 2020. In the community, Schembri paid it for- ward during the COVID lockdown by teaming up with a number of food suppliers to support the Filipino community in Mal- ta facing dwindling supplies and fewer job opportunities. After Maltese suppliers and restaurants reached out to offer their sup- port, Schembri began picking up supplies from all over Malta and delivering it to the community. The migrant community had praised his generosity. Marvin Schembri (left) with Patrizio Cassar

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of MaltaToday previous editions - MaltaToday 6 October 2021 MIDWEEK