Car bomb kills journalist behind Panama Papers offshore tax evasion investigation ‘days after she received threats to her safety’

October 17, 2017 in News by Slad

 

Source: Mirror

Daphne Caruana Galizia, 53 – dubbed a “one-woman WikiLeaks” – was killed as she was driving near the village of Bidnija in northern Malta

A journalist who led the Panama Papers offshore tax evasion expose was killed today when a bomb blew up her car.

Investigative reporter Daphne Caruana Galizia – dubbed a “one-woman WikiLeaks” – was killed as she was driving near the village of Bidnija in northern Malta.

She had filed a complaint to police a fortnight ago after receiving personal threats to her safety, local media said.

Caruana Galizia ran a hugely popular blog relentlessly highlighting cases of alleged corruption, often involving politicians from the Mediterranean island nation.

In Malta, she had led the coverage of the Panama Papers, a leak of millions of legal documents last year detailing financial details of offshore entities used by the rich and powerful to avoid tax.

Daphne Caruana Galizia ran a hugely popular blog highlighting cases of alleged corruption (Image: REX/Shutterstock)
Forensic experts walk in a field after a powerful bomb blew up the car of Daphne Caruana Galizia in Bidnija, Malta (Image: REUTERS)
The reporter had filed a complaint to police a fortnight ago after receiving personal threats to her safety, local media said (Image: REUTERS)
The burnt-out wreck of her car lying in a field metres from the road (Image: REUTERS)

Video today showed the burnt-out wreck of her car lying in a field metres from the road.

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”.

This is a spiteful attack on a citizen and freedom of expression. I will not rest until justice is done. The country deserves justice -JM

Police at the scene in Bidnija, Malta, today (Image: REUTERS)
In Malta, she had led the coverage of the Panama Papers (Image: AFP)
Forensic experts use lights as they look for evidence on a road near the car (Image: REUTERS)
Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat, who faced accusations of wrong-doing by Caruana Galizia earlier this year, denounced her killing (Image: AFP)

“Our country deserves justice,” he said in a televised statement, 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.”

Police inspect the wreckage of the car bomb (Image: AFP)
A forensics expert walks in a field after the powerful bomb blew up the car (Image: REUTERS)

Muscat had called early elections in June seeking a vote of confidence to counter Caruana Galizia’s allegations of corruption.

The report had said documents in a small Malta-based bank showed that Muscat’s wife was the beneficial owner of a company in Panama, and that large sums of money had been moved between the company and bank accounts in Azerbaijan.

Both Muscat and his wife denied the accusation and sued Caruana Galizia for defamation.

Both Muscat and his wife denied the accusations from the reporter and sued her for defamation (Image: REUTERS)

Muscat easily won reelection.

Recently, Caruana Galizia’s outspoken blog had turned its fire on opposition politicians.

On Monday, she had written: “There are crooks everywhere you look now.

“The situation is desperate.

“In another entry last year, she wrote: “Malta’s public life is afflicted with dangerously unstable men with no principles or scruples.”