15 November 2018

Veteran reporter John Sweeney has dismissed the work of Schillings as "bollocks" after its client was shut down.

Sweeney was a recipient of one of Schillings' blustering tirades when he attempted to report on the bank. He celebrated its downfall with a ding at the firm this week. "Schillings, the fancy law firm, said lots of nice things about the bank in a letter to me", recalled Sweeney on Twitter. "All bollocks."

tweet sweeney

His judgment came after the European Central Bank officially revoked the operating licence of Malta's Pilatus Bank several months after its chairman, Ali Sadr Hasheminjad, was arrested in the US on money laundering charges for participating in a scheme to illegally funnel $115m to Iran.

The four-year-old bank was linked to various crimes by Maltese journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia, who reported how the Panama Papers showed that the bank was using offshore accounts to funnel secret payments to Maltese and Azerbaijani companies and politicians, including the Prime Minister of Malta's wife. Galizia was subsequently killed by a car bomb.

sweeney
"Boollllooooccckkks!"

 

At the time of her murder, Galizia was being sued by Hashmenijad for damaging his bank's “reputation and actual and prospective economic relationships”. He instructed Schillings, which fired off letters threatening to sue media organisations for writing about the allegations and which claimed that its reputational damage "could exceed $40 million". 

Schillings did not respond to a request for more bollocks.
 

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Comments

Anonymous 17 Nov 18

Murdering journalists is a heinous crime. Undoubtedly her family and friends are grieving and will continue to do so. As Roffers are keenly aware of the need to respect the fourth estate (even if we regularly disagree with the quality of reporting) and the importance of the separation of powers doctrine, please can RoF accord Daphne Caruana Galizia the respect of getting her name right in this article? And yes, before you reply, of course the allegations were unproven at the time of her murder but when serious political accusations are made, after painstaking research, the least we democracy-loving readers ask for is that the undisputed facts be accurately reported.  Thanks.

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