Rome

Ex-top cop set for Finmeccanica hot seat

Defence group leaderless since Orsi 'corruption' arrest

Ex-top cop set for Finmeccanica hot seat

Rome, July 3 - Former police chief Gianni De Gennaro was widely touted to become the new CEO of the State-controlled Italian defence and aerospace contractor Finmeccanica on Wednesday. An announcement is expected later in the day. Finmeccanica has been leaderless since ex-CEO Giuseppe Orsi was arrested in February on charges of corruption in relation to bribes allegedly paid to secure a contract to sell 12 AgustaWestland helicopters to India. Authorities in both Italy and India have been investigating Finmeccanica, which employs some 70,000 people around the world, over the alleged kickbacks paid in the sale of the helicopters to India. De Gennaro is also the former director of the Department of Information Security (DIS) and was an undersecretary in the government of ex-premier Mario Monti. He was acquitted last October on charges that he pressured a former Genoa police chief to commit perjury in a trial over police brutality at the G8 summit in 2001. News of his likely appointment irked members of Italy's opposition parties on Wednesday. The anti-establishment 5-Star Movement (M5S) decried his "murky" record on the G8 incident, while the leftist SEL party chided the government for not bringing the issue of the vacant post before parliament. A Finmeccanica shareholders meeting on the the new appointment is scheduled Thursday.

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