VistaJet files €386 million lawsuit against rival company

Aqra bil-Malti

VistaJet, a private jet company registered in Malta, has filed a lawsuit in Maltese courts seeking compensation for what it claims was a smear campaign by another smaller private jet company registered and operating in Malta.

Documents filed in court a few days ago and seen by The Shift show that VistaJet is seeking “at least €386 million in damages” in compensation for the damages it claims to have suffered to its global business due to the alleged smear campaign by AirX.

According to the submission by VistaJet’s lawyers, the company is accusing AirX and its founder, John Matthews, of deliberately spreading false and manipulated information about VistaJet and its founder, Thomas Flohr, to damage the company’s reputation and force it out of business.

The allegations are that AirX top executives, including Maltese nationals working for the company, utilised covert tactics, including a burner email address and a fabricated identity, to distribute false and damaging information to a group of international journalists about VistaJet, its clients and its collaborators, such as Bombardier, the manufacturer of most of its aircraft. 

The submissions were made by Joe Camilleri, Frank Testa, and Maria-Lisa Buttigieg from the Mamo TCV law firm and are based on messages in a WhatsApp group called ‘Vista Comms’.

The WhatsApp messages submitted as part of VistaJet’s evidence show alleged discussions about plans to increase AirX’s rates for its services and the possible acquisition of VistaJet’s planes in case the latter collapses due to the smear campaign.

VistaJet claims that this campaign, which mainly included damaging reports in reputable international newspapers and media outlets, caused the company to suffer more than €386 million in damages.

These include the loss of clients, credit, business financing, and the loss of value of its share price.

In addition to AirX and John Matthews, VistaJet has also filed claims against Debbie Camenzuli, Daniel Apap, Houssam Hazzoury, Frederich Baldinger and Abigail Bartolo.

Judge Toni Abela will hear the case in Civil Court and is still awaiting the formal response from AirX and the other defendants. 

VistaJet has been operating since 2004 and relocated to Malta in 2012. It has become one of the biggest private jet operators globally and operates around 280 aircraft, 90 of which are registered under the Maltese flag. It has 3,225 employees, including 445 based in Malta.

AirX was founded in 2011 by John Matthews and is also registered and operates in Malta. According to its website, it has 16 private jets and specialises in bespoke VIP air travel services.

                           

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2 Comments
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Carl.p
Carl.p
27 days ago

the reality is that this government first asks for money to facilitate the entry of the first company and then tries to cheat them with other companies from which it will ask for more money by promising them favors…
now that the various companies have understood the government’s game, they are leaving the island…

John.A
John.A
26 days ago
Reply to  Carl.p

Name one aviation company leaving the island? This is not a Labor vs nationalist discussion, move on.

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