ROME – Police arrested 10 people in relation to the murder of a Maltese investigative journalist who was killed by a car bomb, Prime Minister Joseph Muscat said on Monday.
Daphne Caruana Galizia, who frequently denounced corruption and organized crime in Malta, was killed when her car was blown up on Oct. 16.
“An additional 2 persons have been apprehended in #DaphneCaruanaGalizia murder probe, bringing total to 10 arrests,” Muscat said shortly after an emergency press conference in which he announced that eight suspects had been arrested so far.
He said there was reasonable suspicion that the detainees were connected or involved with Galizia’s murder and authorities were still carrying out searches and covering all areas of interest.
The arrests followed an operation that lasted several weeks and involved police, the armed forces and security services, assisted as well by the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation and the European Police Office.
“I would like to emphasize the commitment of the state and my own personal commitment to bringing the persons who may have commissioned and or executed this crime to justice,” he said.
Investigators believed that some of the suspects in custody had helped craft the bomb that killed Caruana, who had also been investigating the links between Maltese politicians and the Panama Papers, cases of Government corruption and links drug traffickers had established on the island nation.
The crime moved the public both in Malta and abroad, though the journalist’s sons, Matthew, Andrew and Paul, railed against the government.
Matthew had said Malta was a Mafia state in which the government had allowed a culture of impunity to flourish and demanded that Muscat resign.
“He filled his office with crooks, then he filled the police with crooks and imbeciles, then he filled the courts with crooks and incompetents,” he had said.