Gaddafi’s widow appeals Malta’s decision to repatriate funds to Libya

VALLETTA, July 23 (Reuters) – The widow of former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi has appealed a Maltese court ruling ordering the Bank of Valletta to return some 95 million euros to Libya ( $100 million) deposited by Gaddafi’s late son, Mutassim, according to court officials. said.

Safiya Ferkash Mohammed and her lawyers argue in their appeal that the courts lacked jurisdiction and could not decide the matter over the funds.

The sentence was pronounced at the end of June after a legal battle that began in 2012, a year after the overthrow and assassination of Gaddafi.

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Mutassim, who was also killed, was found in possession of several Bank of Valletta credit cards as the owner of a company registered in Malta.

The appeal was filed on behalf of Gaddafi’s heirs by Maltese lawyer Louis Cassar Pullicino. No hearing date has yet been set.

The original court had upheld the Libyan attorney general’s arguments that under Libyan law, as an army officer, Mutassim had been prevented from profiting from any business interests.

Moreover, he had not submitted a complete declaration of assets as required by law.

In her appeal, the widow argues that the Libyan laws invoked in the case were criminal but that no criminal prosecution was ever brought against Mutassim Gaddafi or his heirs.

Furthermore, Maltese courts have been asked to grant Libya a remedy under a foreign criminal law when in principle a domestic court cannot apply the criminal law of a foreign state to grant such a remedy.

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Reporting by Chris Scicluna; edited by Jason Neely

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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