Palermo

Prosecutors request 12 be indicted in State-mafia case

Former Senate speaker Mancino among those facing trial

Prosecutors request 12 be indicted in State-mafia case

(ANSA) - Palermo, July 24 - Former Senate speaker and interior minister Nicola Mancino is one of 12 people facing a possible trial in connection with alleged State-mafia negotiations in the early 1990s following a request by Palermo prosecutors for him to be indicted on Tuesday. Other suspects include the former minister Calogero Mannino, Massimo Ciancimino, the son of late Palermo mayor Vito Cinacimino, mafia bosses Toto' Riina, Giovanni Brusca, Nino Cina', Leoluca Bagarella and Bernardo Provenzano, top current or former police officers Mario Mori, Giuseppe De Donno and Antonio Subranni, and senator and former Berlusconi aide Marcello Dell'Utri. The suspects must answer to various charges of violence or threats to the political body of the State and mafia association. Mancino is accused of false testimony to prosecutors investigating the case and Ciancimino of mafia association and slander. "I prefer to be judged by a third party," said Mancino after being served notice of the charges. "I will demonstrate that I have nothing to do with the charges of false testimony against me and my loyalty to the State". The investigations into suspicions that high-ranking politicians entered negotiations with Cosa Nostra to stop a series of bomb attacks that claimed the lives of anti-Mafia judges Giovanni Falcone and Paolo Borsellino in 1992 recently drew the intervention of President of the Republic Giorgio Napolitano over concerns that Palermo prosecutors had surpassed their powers by wiretapping conversations between Mancino and the head of state's legal advisor. The prosecutors had allegedly failed to comply with the obligation to immediately destroy the recordings, allowing them to enter the public domain.ßß Napolitano's office said in aßstatement that he had appealed to the Constitutional Court even though the wiretapping had been "indirect" as the Italian Constitution forbids prosecutors from investigating the head ofßstateßunless he is suspected of high treason or attacking the constitution itself. The powers of the Italian president would be diminished for future holders of the office if Napolitano accepted the conduct of the prosecutors, the statement said.

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