The Court of Assizes of Palermo had sentenced him to life imprisonment for the murder of the entrepreneur Vincenzo Urso, murdered in Altavilla Milicia in 2009.
Today Piero Erco’s sentence was annulled by the assize court of appeal because one of the popular judges, at the time of the verdict, was over 65, the maximum age set by law for being part of the jury. The sentence of his accomplice, Luca Mantia, who had been imprisoned for 25 years, was also annulled. The entrepreneur was killed with six shots in front of his house. After nine years, thanks to the repentance of Andrea and Francesco Lombardo and Massimiliano Restivo, Erco was identified as the perpetrator of the murder and Mantia as the driver who had brought the killer to the crime scene. After a two-year hearing held before the first section of the Court of Assizes in Palermo, Erco, defended by the lawyers Salvino and Giada Caputo and Francesca Fucaloro, was sentenced to life imprisonment while Mantia was sentenced to 25 years in prison. Immediately after scheduling the hearing before the Court of Assizes of Appeal, the defendants of the defendants realized that one of the popular judges had turned 65 years of age.
«We realized – said Salvino Caputo – that one of the popular judges who made up the Corte di Assise of first instance, at the time of reading the sentence, was over 65 years old. We pleaded this nullity to the Assizes of Appeal panel of Palermo, chaired by Matteo Frasca who, after a brief council session, ordered the nullity of the sentence». The two defendants will be released from prison.
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