The Nationalist Party wants Transport Malta to publish an internal investigation which the authority claims found no evidence of abuse within its maritime enforcement section.

Speaking at a press conference on Tuesday following a MaltaToday expose, PN's maritime spokesperson Ivan Castillo said the party has no faith in the internal probe that was said to have found no wrongdoing and is demanding it is published.

"Transport Malta is claiming its internal investigation did not find signs of meddling but the evidence we have proves otherwise," he said.

"We demand the publication of the internal investigation, along with how it was carried out and the names of the investigators."

On Sunday, MaltaToday reported that senior Transport Malta officials are at the centre of a corruption racket in which they allegedly dropped maritime fines in exchange for bribes.

It said at least three officials within the Maritime Enforcement Unit had tampered with the fines and that in 2021 alone, 59% of Transport Malta fines issued to sea vessels were "lost".

"The PN is informed figures for 2022 and 2023 are even worse," Castillo added.

When asked about the case, Transport Malta told MaltaToday that an internal inquiry board had concluded there was no evidence of tampering with fines.

But evidence seen by the PN and journalists indicated otherwise, Castillo said. He added that the government cannot clamp down on abuse as it is being kept hostage by some Transport Malta officials.

PN MPs (from left) Mark Anthony Sammut, Ivan Castillo and Darren Carabott. They addressed the press conference on Tuesday. Photo: PNPN MPs (from left) Mark Anthony Sammut, Ivan Castillo and Darren Carabott. They addressed the press conference on Tuesday. Photo: PN

'Latest in series of rackets'

This was only the latest in a series of rackets and scandalous allegations coming out of Transport Malta, PN's transport spokesperson Mark Anthony Sammut added, and throughout months of revelations, the only changes made were replacements of the minister and the CEO. But the government is not doing nearly enough to stop abuse at TM.

"We don't trust this investigation and we have reason to believe it was compromised," Sammut said.

"We have evidence showing officials were forced to lie under oath and that the board of inquiry members were in contact with witnesses who were testifying before them."

He also claimed the police have been "lethargic" on the case, "as they often are whenever politicians or people close to them are implicated in abuse investigations".

"The police commissioner must assure us that we're living in a country where the law applies equally to everyone because the evidence so far indicates that this is not the case," PN's home affairs spokesperson Darren Carabott added.

"I hope no direction was given to keep some people from being prosecuted."

The police have confirmed they are investigating the case.

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