We met up with Stephan Claus Roh, the Swiss lawyer of Joseph Mifsud, the Maltese lecturer who ended up at the centre of Russiagate and the subsequent counter investigation launched by United States Attorney John Durham into the origins of the alleged Russian conspiracy. Roh commented on the investigation published by InsideOver on 19 December into the alleged death of his client: “It goes without saying that we are very worried as Prof. Mifsud has repeatedly claimed that his life is in danger and that he is under threat. His death would most likely be a crime”.

These are the words uttered by the lawyer of the Maltese professor who disappeared without trace some time ago. In the article we reported that the prosecutors of the Agrigento Public Prosecution Office are now almost certain that they are dealing with a person under investigation who in future will have no way of defending himself either in a courtroom or at a political level : “The chances that Mifsud is dead are very high – a source at the Agrigento Palace of Justice told InsideOver – We are 80% sure”. Mifsud is being investigated in the Sicilian city as part of the proceedings brought by prosecutors in relation to “crazy expenses” claimed by the lecturer when he was President of the University Consortium of Agrigento. The proceedings were launched after complaints were submitted by Giovanni Di Maida, the current commissioner of the university consortium who at the time was a member of the board of directors.

“I heard from him last spring: he feared for his life”

“80% is not 100%,” notes Stephan Roh, commenting on the rumours published by InsideOver. “I don’t know why the Agrigento Public Prosecution Office thinks that Joseph Mifsud is dead but I can say that I had direct contact with him until last spring (2019)”. Then, the Swiss lawyer added, “the contacts were indirect, through his daughter. Recently he was scared and feared for his life”’ admits Roh, who was unable to tell us if his client is still alive or not. The hope, of course, is that he is hidden somewhere. “If he is dead, it is highly likely that it is a crime but I hope that he is not and is alive. We know he was in Anatolia, in Marche, in 2017, and then in Rome in 2018″.

“Nobody can disappear into thin air like that”

“As everyone knows very well, nobody can disappear into thin air like that in Italy, in the European Union – he observed – where everything is monitored and supervised. Nobody can disappear into thin air without the help of some organisation. Someone helped Mifsud to hide. I don’t know if it’s the mafia, the government or some other organisation, I don’t know, I have no idea. But it must be a powerful organisation if it can hide Mifsud. Stephan Roh also recalled that it is not the first time that Mifsud has been given up for dead: “In October 2018 – he explained – the American Democratic Party had given him up for dead in a public statement. You can find it on the internet … “.

According to the lawyer, his client should be considered more of a victim within this incredible international spy story. And he certainly is not and has never been a Russian spy: “Two years of investigations involving false accusations by the Mueller Team came to nothing,” he commented.

“Surprised by the disturbing accusations”

The lawyer showed us a link that relates to an article from 2011. In particular, it gives news of the award of a prize to Joseph Mifsud in precisely that year. And it was not a second-rate honour: on the contrary, it was the “Mediterranean Award 2011”, the subheading of which is “The Arab Spring, uncertainties and opportunities”.

The Maltese professor received the award on 16 July 2011 in Lauria, Basilicata, from the then Vice-President of the European Parliament Gianni Pittella. Mifsud was in good company on that occasion: in addition to him the Ambassador of Morocco to Italy Hassan Abouyoub, the Minister of Education and Scientific Research of Jordan Wacir Owaijs and the protagonist of the Tunisian protests Abdouli Touhami and MEP Magdi Allam also won the award. A special mention was also made that year of none other than the writer Andrea Camilleri, the literary father of Inspector Montalbano.

The professor’s lawyer returned to the award to express his perplexity: “As you can see, my client – said the lawyer Roh – was honoured for his work in Agrigento and has also received honours from one of the top representatives of the European Union. This is why we are even more surprised by the disturbing accusations made against him”.

“Mifsud was rewarded as long as he worked on projects with SudgestAid, the company controlled by the former minister Scotti – the lawyer continued – using EU funds via Agrigento. Since 2012, however, these expenses have no longer been considered of public interest”.

“We would like to know the prosecution case”

Mr. Roh therefore expressed his perplexity about the accusations against his client in relation to the so-called “crazy expenses” found in the investigations. Moreover, together with his colleagues, he made it clear that he has not yet fully understood the entire prosecution case: “In our capacity as his defence counsel – continued Roh – We would like to have a precise picture of the accusations”.

The Maltese professor stands accused of using the budget of the Agrigento University hub for personal expenses. Through calls, trips abroad and other unjustified expenses, he allegedly created serious problems for the body’s budget. The investigation by the prosecutor of the city of temples is continuing, having been launched following the submission of complaints by the former vice-president of the university hub, the current commissioner, Giovanni Di Maida.

Who is Joseph Mifsud?

According to the official reconstruction, the lecturer stated in an April 2016 meeting to George Papadopoulos, adviser of Donald Trump’s campaign, that he had learned that the Russian government possessed “dirt” on Hillary Clinton “in the form of e-mails “. At that point, the ex-adviser to the President allegedly repeated the information to the Australian High Commissioner in London, Alexander Downer, who in turn reported everything to the American authorities. As a result, on July 31, 2016, the FBI initiated investigations into alleged links between Trump and Russia, accusations that later proved without foundation. But who designed and packaged everything with the aim of “framing” Trump? American justice is taking its course with John Durham’s criminal investigation.