Mafia: operation "Hesperia"Dda seeks judgment for 35

(ANSA) – PALERMO, 03 JAN – The Dda of Palermo has asked for the indictment of the 35 people involved, last 6 September, in the anti-mafia operation of the Trapani carabinieri “Hesperia”. The first preliminary hearing, before the Palermo investigating judge Ermelinda Marfia, will be held on February 2nd. 33 people were arrested in the blitz: 21 in prison and 12 under house arrest. Among them, many well-known names in organized crime from Marsala, Campobello di Mazara and Castelvetrano, but also new faces. Among the prominent names is that of Campobello Francesco Luppino, 67, released from prison just over three years ago after serving a long sentence for the mafia, according to the indictment he would have gotten back to work to rebuild the Cosa relationship network between Campobello di Mazara, Mazara, Castelvetrano and Marsala. The various charges contested against the suspects are mafia-type association, extortion, disturbed freedom of enchantments (in auctions at the Court of Marsala), crimes relating to drugs, illegal carrying of weapons, gambling and more, all aggravated by the method and from the mafia modalities.

The investigation stems from investigative efforts aimed at the capture of fugitive boss Matteo Messina Denaro. The leading elements of the Trapani Cosa Nostra involved in the investigation would refer to him. Indeed, according to the investigators, Messina Denaro would still be able to give “directives” for the reorganization of the gang. Furthermore, the investigations also testify to the infiltration of the Cosa Nostra from Trapani into the economic fabric, with reference to conditioning of judicial auctions and tenders and, to the management, in an almost monopolistic form, of the security sector in night clubs and of credit recovery. .