The director of the United States’ Central Intelligence Agency David Petraeus's has resigned after admitting to have had an extra-marital affair uncovered during an investigation into a potential breach of his Gmail account. But in Malta the present head of the security services, Godfrey Scicluna was appointed to his post (and had his contract extended at the beginning of this year) even though he was named in court as having had an extra-marital affair with a police woman both before and after she was married in 1998 when he was a police inspector.
BBC News reported that unnamed officials said the FBI was checking his private account when it found Mr Petraeus was having an affair with his biographer, Paula Broadwell.
Mr Petraeus described his behaviour as "unacceptable" for the leader of the nation's main intelligence agency.
"After being married for over 37 years, I showed extremely poor judgment by engaging in an extra-marital affair," Mr Petraeus said in a statement.
"Such behaviour is unacceptable, both as a husband and as the leader of an organisation such as ours. This afternoon, the president graciously accepted my resignation."
BBC World Affairs Editor John Simpson says Petraeus’ resignation is a huge loss for the US. “For this amount of brain-power and strategic and tactical thinking to be lost to the United States because of an affair with his biographer will no doubt seem to many in Europe and the rest of the world to be completely disproportionate.
"But this is not simply another example of the kind of Puritanism which bemuses non-Americans.
"As the boss of the CIA David Petraeus was expected to set an example to the people under his command; and extra-marital affairs have often led to blackmail and other difficulties for intelligence workers in the past."
Last January then Minister of the Interior Carmelo Mifsud Bonnici told parliament that as from the beginning of 2012 Godfrey Scicluna officially retired from the post of Head of the Security Service in Malta but that Scicluna has been given a contract to stay on in his post.
The main duty of the service, based in San Gwann but with branches elsewhere is to safeguard national security, principally from organised crime or overseas activities.
But it is not the first time that it has been accused of going beyond its remit by being used by powerful persons in government to follow individuals who are considered troublesome and ready to create political discomfort for government.
Scicluna is known for his support for the PN and gets on well with people like Edgar Galea Curmi who is the Chief of Staff of the Office of the Prime Minister.
The set up of the local Security Services is flawed and the lack of parliamentary oversight and its symbiosis with government structures makes it wide open to abuse. Operatives of the Security Services are known to work under cover in all local companies offering communication services like telephony, mobile phones and internet services. They also work in strategic areas in public entities where they have access to emails, SMSs and phone calls.