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2 maltatoday | SUNDAY • 1 MAY 2022 NEWS CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1 Like many of the PN's legal crop of MPs, Giglio's career as a criminal defence lawyer should not be an obstacle to his grow- ing popularity inside the party – first as an eloquent TV pundit reeled out to prop up the party's positions, and now elected on both the 9th and 10th districts, a bedrock of PN support. His election even scuppered the chances of other established MPs, among them Jason Azzo- pardi (see page 3), on the ninth district. Giglio is also seen as a moder- ate on subjects that tend to be priority targets against Labour by some hardened members of the PN. An example was one re- cent tweet about Malta's stand- ing on financial crime: "Can Malta do better? Yes, definite- ly," he wrote. "Criticism is healthy but it must also be fair. Other EU countries were also found lag- ging and since October 2021, several cases were referred to the EPPO. Can our efforts to fight financial crime be more coordinated? "Yes, there is always room for improvement in everything we do. But isn't this also the case with every other country in the world?" Bernard Grech has previously expressed his wish for the PN to have a female deputy lead- er, with Janice Chetcuti's name whispered as a potential team player for Grech. The PN will ditch its second co-leader this year after toying with a similar set-up to Labour's leadership after 2014. 'Moderate' Giglio seen as potential deputy leader MATTHEW VELLA THE extradited supermarket boss Ryan Schembri had sold his chain of six supermarkets to the Medasia restaurant en- trepreneur Darren Casha for just €94,000 – weeks before ab- sconding the island with tens of millions in debts left behind. Schembri, 43, was arrested last week in Scotland and extradited to Malta to face charges of fraud and money laundering after his More Supermarkets chain crashed, leaving a trail of debts worth millions when he fled the island in November 2014. He had been living in Dubai, London and finally Scotland with his partner Aviva Ryan, and even set up a trading company called Bors Trading according to UK records. But it is the nature of the debt left in the wake of the More Supermarket crash, which still raises questions on the dealings he had with various business- people, as well as Adrian Agius, the 'Maksar' gang boss accused of the murder of lawyer Car- mel Chircop, who himself was a More Supermarkets creditor. Agius was a registered director of the More Supermarkets out- let in Hamrun, by far the most lucrative outlet of all, as well as having a partnership with Schembri in the company Inter- aa Holdings. Sale of More to Casha Darren Casha and his other associates had accepted a share transfer for the supermarket chain in May 2014 after having previously loaned Schembri the sum total of €5.7 million for the development of a Libyan expan- sion of the supermarket busi- ness. The transfer of the super- market business was intended as a means for Schembri to no longer be Casha's debtor, with other shareholders in the More Supermarket chain following suit and signing off on the trans- fer to Casha's D More Holdings. The More shareholders ap- pearing on the private agree- ment comprised Adrian Agius, on behalf of Imora Holdings; Alexander Polidano for Panelix Supplies; Kurt Camilleri for K Consult; and Christian Delia Casha had incorporated Vice Holdings to take over the More Supermarket chain back in April 2014, together with share- holders Adrian Zammit for AZ Investment and Raymond Camilleri. Casha's share was later transferred separately into the company D More Holdings, with Vice holding a 25% share- holding. Schembri was however re- tained only as a director of the More Supermarkets outlet of Hamrun, together with his fa- ther, Adrian Agius, Chris Delia and Kurt Camilleri. Schembri and Agius signed 'secret' constitution of debt But after his share transfer to Darren Casha, Ryan Schembri had more debts to settle: a ma- jor headache was a €3.5 million loan from two creditors, Ed- mond Mugliett and Alex Farru- gia. Despite having sold off the su- permarket chain to Casha, and no longer empowered to act in the name of More Supermar- kets, Schembri signed a new constitution of debt weeks later in June 2014 with his creditors, and with Adrian Agius present for the signing of the debt agree- ment. Using their roles as direc- tors of More's Hamrun outlet, Schembri and Agius signed the constitution of debt – allegedly unbeknownst to Casha. Casha only found out about the 'new' debt in October 2014, when Schembri fled the island. He has since refused to assume responsibility for the debt owed, telling the courts that not even the More financial controller at the time had any indication that More Supermarkets had re- ceived that kind of money. Casha claims he is owed €10 million Darren Casha has claimed he is owed €10 million by Schembri. In a 2016 judicial protest, Ca- sha accused Schembri of having "fraudulently and deceitfully" misled him into 'investing'. Casha claimed Schembri had fooled him into making the in- vestment to expand More Su- permarkets in Libya and that the accounts he had been shown were "mistaken and far from the truth". He also said Schembri seemed to have been acting on the ex- ecution of such a plan and had also asked to be introduced to other people, principally in busi- ness, who were ready to invest. While there were some who in- vested directly, other investors had asked Schembri for some kind of guarantee. For some time, the investors were receiv- ing returns on their investment but all of a sudden, in March 2014, Schembri told them he had problems paying them back, not only in respect of their re- turns but also the capital. Casha said that initially, even with the involvement of Schem- bri himself, he had started to participate in the running of More Supermarkets. Creditors and suppliers had to be paid not only for their consignments but also for balances that had come due previously. "Gradually the fact began to emerge that the figures and accounts details which Ryan Schembri had given and on which [Casha] had based his decision to enter into such in- volvement were mistaken and far from the truth," Casha said in the protest. "Due to deceit, illegal, abusive and fraudulent behaviour on the part of the respondents and principally of the respondent Ryan Schembri, the protesting parties incurred huge damag- es..." "All together, the damages suffered as well as the contin- uous further damages that the protesting party is still suffering everyday… exceed €10 million," Casha said. Schembri piled debts onto supermarket after selling chain to investor for €90,000 Darren Casha (right) and his other associates had accepted a share transfer for the supermarket chain in May 2014 after having previously loaned Ryan Schembri the sum total of €5.7 million for the development of a Libyan expansion of the supermarket business Ryan Schembri transferred the More supermarket chain to Darren Casha, whom he owed €5.6 million. But he then piled on millions more in debt, allegedly behind Casha's back

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