EU delegates slam Malta after reporter's death prompts visit

A delegation of European Union lawmakers on a fact-finding mission to Malta has slammed the country for its "perception of impunity."

The delegation's two-day visit to Malta that ended Friday was prompted by the Oct. 16 bombing death of a Maltese journalist who investigated money-laundering in the tiny EU nation.

The European Parliament members sharply criticized implementation of laws to combat money laundering in Malta, which has a reputation as a tax haven.

They also expressed "great concern" over Malta's selling of passports to foreigners without making the identities of the passport-holders public.

Delegation leader Ana Gomes said the system "with all its opacity, bears the risk of importing criminals and money laundering into the whole EU."

Malta's government didn't immediately respond to the delegation's harsh assessment.

The journalist's slaying remains unsolved.