Ex-interior minister seeks exemption from Mafia trial

Nicola Mancino suspected of false testimony

Ex-interior minister seeks exemption from Mafia trial

Palermo, 27 May - Former Senate Speaker and ex-interior minister Nicola Mancino said he hoped to see charges against him tossed out of court at a hearing on Monday in relation to negotiations between the State and the Mafia in the early 1990s. The trial hearing was Mancino's first. He is suspected of giving false testimony to prosecutors investigating the case. "I have always fought the Mafia. I can't be in the same trial as where there is Mafia," Mancino declared, adding that he hoped the court would exempt him from trial. "I have confidence and hope that justice will be done, and that I can be out of the trial as soon as possible," Mancino said. Palermo prosecutors investigating alleged State-Mafia negotiations last July requested that Mancino and former minister Calogero Mannino be put on trial. A total of 12 suspects, including Cosa Nostra bosses and police officers, were listed in the request. Massimo Ciancimino, son of late Palermo mayor Vito Cinacimino, was also a suspect.

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