Former Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit (FIAU) investigator Jonathan Ferris has once again sought recourse before the courts claiming "a blatant breach of the word and spirit of the whistleblower act".

He said this was because the authorities were dragging their feet in granting him whistleblower status.

Mr Ferris claims he has been fired from the government’s anti-money laundering agency after he started to look into reports by Daphne Caruana Galizia about allegations that the Panama company Egrant was owned by Prime Minister Joseph Muscat’s wife. Both the Prime Minister and Ms Muscat reject the allegations.

In a second judicial protest filed early on Friday, hot on the heels of a similar act filed in January, Mr Ferris is claiming that since first requesting whistleblower status in November, his situation has remained unchanged.

The former FIAU official specialising in the prosecution of fraud cases had his request for legal protection redirected by the Justice Ministry to the external whistleblower unit at the Office of the Prime Minister and was asked to make an external disclosure in writing before being granted his request.

Read: Opposition calls for protection for former FIAU official, seeks minister's resignation

However, after complying with this instruction during a meeting in January with Philip Massa, officer in charge of external whistleblower unit, Mr Ferris was then told that such an external disclosure had to be preceded by an internal disclosure to the FIAU, the unit from which he had been fired shortly after finalising a report calling for criminal action against Tourism Minister Konrad Mizzi.

A rigmarole of directions followed, whereby Mr Ferris alleged that he was ‘being taken for a ride’ and that every party involved was ‘passing the buck on to the other’ landing him in a situation which was a far cry from the ‘rosy speeches recently uttered by the Prime Minister as well as the Justice Minister.

When addressing the European Parliament during the debate on the Rule of Law, the Justice Minister reassured those assembled that there would be "no dragging of feet" for Mr Ferris to be granted legal protection as whistleblower. The minister had evidently been deceiving the MEPs, the protest read.

Read: MEPs highlight 'perception of impunity' during visit to Malta

By means of Friday's judicial protest, Mr Ferris was formally calling upon the Prime Minister, the Justice Minister, the AG and Philip Massa to take cognizance of the "interminable saga" and to grant him the whistleblower status so as to put an end to this abusive and illegal delay.

Without the requested protection, Mr Ferris could face a five-year jail-term and a €100,000 fine for blowing the whistle on any corruption he may have witnessed during his time at the FIAU.

Lawyers Roselyn Borg, Jason Azzopardi and Andrew Borg Cardona signed the judicial protest.

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