The Accountancy Board has suspended the accountancy warrants of Nexia BT’s Brian Tonna and Karl Cini after their arrest earlier this week.
The Practising Certificates in Auditing have also been suspended, together with the registration of Nexia BT and its subsidiaries BTI Management Limited and Nexia BT Advisory Services Limited.
In a statement on its website, the board said it took this decision “following the conclusion of the magisterial inquiry by Magistrate Natasha Galea Sciberras and related developments.” The inquiry investigated claims that Schembri took a €100,000 kickback on passport sales from Tonna.
Both Tonna and Cini earlier this week were under arrest on suspicion of money laundering and the assets and those of their closest relatives were frozen by court order. They were released after interrogation.
The statement said that “following the conclusion of the magisterial inquiry by Magistrate Dr Natasha Galea Sciberras and related developments, the Accountancy Board has appointed a Disciplinary Committee in line with article 7(16) of the Accountancy Profession Act Cap 281 of the Laws of Malta in order to consider and adjudge the charges imputed against Mr Brian Tonna, Mr Karl Cini, Nexia BT, BTI Management Limited and Nexia BT Advisory Services Limited.
“In view of this, the Board has temporarily suspended the CPA Warrants and Practising Certificates in Auditing of Mr Brian Tonna and Mr Karl Cini, as well as the registration of Nexia BT, BTI Management Limited and Nexia BT Advisory Services Limited.
“The Board exercises its powers in accordance with Maltese and European law, in full respect of the fundamental human rights of the person and the rule of law.”
Proceedings against the two had started three years ago, but the board only suspended them after the conclusion of the magisterial inquiry.