Mafia: Four sentences canceled in trial against Messina Denaro’s supporters

Acceding to the defense’s requests, the second section of the Cassation Court annulled four out of the six convictions issued on April 5, 2023, by the fourth section of the Court of Appeals of Palermo to the defendants in the fast-track trial stemming from the anti-mafia operation “Ermes 3” (two arrests and 13 charges on June 20, 2020), which dealt another blow to the circle of alleged “accomplices” and supporters of the then-fugitive boss Matteo Messina Denaro.

Two of these four convictions were annulled and referred to a different section of the Court of Appeals of Palermo for the reassessment of the penalty. The defense argued that the accusation of belonging to Cosa Nostra for Marco Manzo, 59 years old, from Campobello di Mazara, sentenced to 9 years in prison, and for Giuseppe Calcagno, 49 years old, born in Marsala but also a resident of Campobello di Mazara, sentenced to 6 years and 8 months, dates back to years before 2015 when the law that stiffened penalties for the crime of mafia-type association came into force in June.

The defenders had argued the same thesis, unsuccessfully, in both the first and second instance. Manzo and Calcagno were the only ones arrested in the “Ermes 3” operation (accused of various crimes: mafia association, extortion, possession of weapons, aiding and abetting the fugitive Matteo Messina Denaro, who is also under investigation for attempted extortion in this case).

For Antonino Adamo and Vito Genna, both 66 years old and from Mazara del Vallo, the Cassation Court instead annulled without referral, due to the expiry of the statute of limitations, the 2-year prison sentences each for aiding and abetting. The four defendants were represented by lawyers Paolo Paladino, Luigi Pipitone, Raffaele Bonsignore, and Walter Marino. The other two defendants out of the six convicted in the appeals court for aiding and abetting did not appeal to the Cassation Court. These two are Gaspare Genna, 44 years old, and Pietro Zerillo, 49 years old, both from Mazara del Vallo, who received two years with a suspended sentence. Six other individuals involved in the “Ermes 3” investigation are currently on trial before the Marsala Court.

Mafia, processo ai favoreggiatori di Messina Denaro: annullate quattro condanne

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