Investigative journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia, who spearheaded the ‘Panama Papers’ offshore tax evasion leaks, was killed Monday by a car bomb while driving near her home village of Bidnija in northern Malta. The explosion destroyed her rented Peugot 108, throwing debris into a nearby field. Police have opened a murder inquiry, and the government of Malta has asked the U.S. FBI for assistance in the case.
Outraged to hear that Maltese investigative journalist+blogger Daphne Caruana Galizia has been murdered this afternoon not far from her home with a car bomb. I issue a €20k reward for information leading to the conviction of her killers. Her blog: https://t.co/XQCEXBKYn3 pic.twitter.com/ITHlBRzr0J
— Julian Assange 🔹 (@JulianAssange) October 16, 2017
Caruana Galizia – a popular blogger whose website often attracted more readers than the combined circulation of Malta’s newspapers, was referred to by Politico as a “one-woman Wikileaks,” as she became an enemy to those in both the establishment and the European underworld.
Most recently, her work spotlighted offshore companies linked to Malta’s prime minister, Joseph Muscat, and two of his closest aides, in conjunction with the sale of Maltese passports and cash received from the government of Azerbaijan.
The journalist had filed a complaint with police two weeks ago after receiving personal threats, according to local media reports.
The Mirror reports:
Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat, who faced accusations of wrong-doing by Caruana Galizia earlier this year, denounced her killing.
He called it a “barbaric attack on press freedom”.
Muscat – who bullshitted his way through the press conference, added “our country deserves justice,” calling for national unity. “I will not rest until I see justice done in this case… “Everyone knows Caruana Galizia was a harsh critic of mine, both politically and personally, but nobody can justify this barbaric act in any way.”
“The only remedy for anyone who felt slandered was through the courts.”
Could that sound more like a guy covering up the assassination of a journalist about to wreck his career and send him to jail?
BBC reports that Caruana Galizia’s death comes four months after Mr Muscat’s Labour Party won an election he called early because of the blogger’s allegations linking him and his wife to the Panama Papers scandal.
The couple denied claims that they had used secret offshore bank accounts to hide payments from Azerbaijan’s ruling family.
A vigil was held in Caruana Galizia’s name Monday night
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— Jacob Borg (@BorgJake) October 16, 2017