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MaltaToday 30 October 2022

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2 maltatoday | SUNDAY • 30 OCTOBER 2022 NEWS Win a trip to Dubai In collaboration with with your moneybase Mastercard. Every €10 spent earns you a chance to win. Terms and conditions apply. Visit for more information. Moneybase payment services are brought to you by Moneybase Limited (MB) C87193, which is licensed by the MFSA to transact the business of a Financial Institution in terms of the Financial Institutions Act, Cap 376. Moneybase Investment Services are brought to you by Calamatta Cuschieri Investment Services Ltd (CCIS) C13729 and is licensed by the MFSA to undertake investment services business under the Investment Services Act, Cap 370. Moneybase Invest offers direct market access and speed of execution and is intended for knowledgeable and experienced individuals taking their own investment decisions. The value of investments may go up as well as down and investors might not get back the original amount invested. MB and CCIS are both subsidiaries of the CC Finance Group plc with their registered address situated at Level 0, Ewropa Business Centre, Dun Karm Street, Birkirkara, BKR 9034, Malta. CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1 After he was killed, Elena was left battling several court cases to try and reclaim her husband's companies and put the business back in action. She says her husband grew anxious in the months before his murder. "He would tell me not to come in the car with him," she said, suggesting that he knew he was being targeted. He had also expressed a wish to leave Malta entirely. "He said, 'I want to run away from Malta, leave somewhere and you join me later after I send you a tick- et'," Elena recounts. Between the pending charges and his fishing business, Ele- na believes that it was Martin's fuel-smuggling operations that made him a target. Cachia's license allowed him to sail into international waters. According to Elena, her husband would sail out into the middle of the sea between Libya and Malta. Fuel would be loaded on- to Cachia's vessel, and another boat would come and pick up the load. Cachia was already known to police as a fuel smuggler. He was a person of interest in a police probe into the smuggling of fuel from Libya. He also faced human traffick- ing charges after his fishing ves- sel, the Liberty V, was impound- ed by police officers when they received a tip-off that 20 irreg- ular immigrants were on board. Liberty Fishing Company, which owned the Liberty V, was indeed owned by Elena, who was written down as the director, le- gal and judicial representative, and company secretary. When he was arrested in 2013, Martin Cachia had refused to answer any questions during his interrogation over the hu- man trafficking allegations. But his Egyptian crew soon changed their story. From rescuing sailors in distress, the crew recounted how the Liberty V had encoun- tered problems with the vessel's bilge pump. They had contacted Cachia, who at first instructed them to return to shore, but shortly af- terwards called up a crew mem- ber and told him to stand fast and await another vessel that was sailing to their location to pick up their cargo of around 70 boxes of Russian vodka. After the two vessels got along- side each other, and before transferring the alcohol, the Liberty crew said that between 28 and 42 passengers embarked on their vessel from the other boat. The other boat had a Lib- yan crew. The passengers included around five women and four or five children, who they said were "probably Syrian." The Liber- ty reached land at Ras Ħanżir, beneath Corradino Hill in the Grand Harbour and had suc- cessfully offloaded part of its human cargo into a van before He said, 'I want to run away from Malta'

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