For the first time in more than two years, Commissioner of Police Lawrence Cutajar has given an exclusive interview to Television Malta about the investigation into the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia. Among other things, he mentioned, that at one point the Police were concerned that reports in certain sections of the media might prejudice the investigations. Cutajar said that investigations into this case were still actively ongoing despite the fact that four people had been brought to Court and charged .
Commissioner Cutajar said that despite criticism to the effect that he was not giving press conferences about Daphne Caruana Galizia’s murder, the fact of the matter is that the Maltese Police together with Europo, the FBI and other Dutch experts had carried out a serious investigation which had led to four people being arrested and charged with the murder. Cutajar said that one had to understand that there were sensitive elements that the public can’t be made aware of.
“This is where we have to shoulder responsibility .. there were moments in the investigation when investigators were almost certain that recordings existed, yet we did not have these recordings in hand. So had we gone to arrest someone. there was a chance that the recordings would not be found. So you either show your hand and risk losing everything or you wait a bit more to try to gather more information.”
The Commissioner said that investigations in connection with this case were still ongoing.
“The investigation is still active, it’s ongoing and despite the fact that people have been charged the tempo has not decreased. All loose ends are being investigated by the Police, in the presence of Europol and with the relevant inquiries. We want to get to the bottom of it, and get results, as does everyone.”
When asked to reply to criticism levelled at the Police Force, apropos of the investigation, Cutajar said that he was not responsible for investigative work but had full faith in the investigators and has been assured that there will be further progress in the case. He said that there was a continuous fear that if information is revealed or published, the investigation might be obstructed or prejudiced.
“I am sometimes criticised over press conferences, not giving out information and detais but sometimes it is better not to put certain details out there which can prejudice the investigation. One of the most awkward and uncomfortable moments of the investigation when we panicked was when the media published certain details, which could have prejudiced the investigation.”
He said that he was proud that after two years, four people had already been charged in Court.
“There were other crimes, of a certain magnitude, I won’t mention names, everybody knows which they are, and I ask myself why no one was ever charged in Court and why there was never any progress in investigations. Were Police Commissioners ever asked to resign over these?
Cutajar said that the Corps was strengthening its resources and that since he had been appointed Commissioner, human resources had doubled in the department of anti-money laundering and economic crime. Cutajar said that Police work was focused on community and on districts. As of mid next month, the district police will have spanking new vehicles, not second hand vehicles previously used by other Departments.