The main prosecution witness in the Dalligate affair, Gayle Kimberley, has been called by the police for fresh questioning.
Dr Kimberley was interrogated at the police headquarters on Friday where she was confronted with new evidence that emerged in the past few months that was not available to investigators during the original probe.
The interrogation lasted some hours but Dr Kimberley, who recently gave birth, was not held, according to sources. Her former partner, Iosif Galea, was also questioned but the interrogation in his case was brief.
The police have been collecting evidence following the publication of fresh e-mails which suggest Dr Kimberley guided the lobbying attempts of 49-year-old restaurateur Silvio Zammit – the only person facing criminal charges in the case.
Mr Zammit is facing charges in connection with his alleged request for a bribe of €60 million from tobacco company Swedish Match in order to help lift a ban on snus – an orally consumed form of tobacco that can only be sold in Sweden under EU rules.
The scandal forced the resignation of Former European Commissioner John Dalli, after the EU anti-fraud agency (OLAF), which first investigated the case, claimed that the Maltese politician knew that his name was being used in connection with this bribe. Mr Zammit is a former canvasser of Mr Dalli.
The team led by Mr Rizzo concluded they did not have evidence against her
Police Commissioner Peter Paul Zammit declared there was not enough evidence to proceed against Mr Dalli. His opinion contrasted that of his predecessor, John Rizzo, who planned to charge the former EU Commissioner.
OLAF had recommended that Dr Kimberley should be prosecuted. However, the team led by Mr Rizzo concluded they did not have evidence against her.
But in June, Mr Zammit filed a judicial protest claiming he had evidence to show he was acting on Dr Kimberley’s instructions. The assertion was dismissed by her lawyer Giannella de Marco.
E-mails published by The Sunday Times of Malta, nonetheless, show Mr Zammit receiving detailed feedback from Dr Kimberley on what he should say and write to lobbyists in Brussels.
Dr Kimberley, who had acted as the local representative for Swedish Match, always insisted with investigators she had washed her hands of the affair after Mr Zammit allegedly asked for the €60 million in January, 2012. However, e-mails from February and March of that year indicate that Dr Kimberley had partnered with Mr Zammit in a second lobbying effort – the one which eventually led the Swedish Tobacco company to file a report with the EU, triggering the OLAF investigation and subsequent Maltese court case.
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