Updated 12.05pm with Żminijietna PR
Around €70,000 were raised in 36 hours in a crowdfunding initiative to support Daphne Caruana in the wake of a controversial garnishee order instituted by Economy Minister Chris Cardona following the blogger's brothel claims.
The figure raised clearly surpasses the €47,460 garnishee order placed on her assets for the duration of proceedings in connection with two libel suits filed by Dr Cardona and his EU presidency policy officer, Joseph Gerada.
The two felt aggrieved after Ms Caruana Galizia alleged they had visited a brothel while on official duty in Germany. Both men deny the claims.
Though the garnishee order is perfectly legal, it prompted harsh criticism from editors, political parties, the European Federation of Journalists and the Institute of Maltese Journalists who deemed the measure too excessive and an affront to the freedom of the press.
In a post last night, Ms Caruana Galizia said $59,000 poured in from 1,225 people through a crowdfunding site, with individual contributions ranging from $3 to $1,000.
"Other people gave their donations in person. One man brought €5,000. Another two brought €1,000 each; yet another brought €2,000. One man even rang to offer a hypothec on his property. An old couple took a 90-minute bus ride to donate €5..." she wrote.
Welcoming the initiative by Nationalist candidate David Thake, the blogger said that lawyers will now be acting as curators of the fund and making arrangements for the deposit in court. The extra money raised would be donated to Dar Merħba Bik.
"Thank you all for giving the Economy Minister and Labour Party deputy leader a two-fingered salute," she wrote.
Meanwhile, Żminijietna – Voice of the Left said that garnishee orders against journalists should be scrapped.
Żminijietna said it strongly believes that such orders are obsolete and should be removed. Also the leftist organisation condemns the use of garnishee orders against trade unions.
On the other hand, the organisation condemned journalists who use their profession to spread malicious and “hatred” news.