The Legality Boat to Remember Anti-mafia Judge Falcone

Fri, 05/23/2014 - 05:20

Yesterday, 1,500 Italian students  boarded La Nave della Legalità (the Legality Boat) traveling from Rome to Palermo, to take part in many initiatives to mark the 22nd anniversary of the Capaci massacre. On the 23d of May 1992, a bomb planted by the mafia near the town of Capaci killed anti-mafia Judge Giovanni Falcone, his wife Francesca Morvillo, and their three bodyguards, an act of revenge for the conviction of dozens of mobsters in the Maxi Trial. 

Since 2002 the Ministry of Education and the Fondazione Giovanni e Francesca Falcone organize this moving event, involving over 5000 students overall. This year the president of the Falcone Foundation Maria Falcone and director Pif, will welcome the students who departed from Civitavecchia's port in Palermo.

In the 1980s, Falcone introduced an innovative investigative technique while working to the 'Spatola investigation', seizing bank records to follow "the money trail" created by heroin deals, becoming one of the first Sicilian magistrates to establish working relationships with colleagues from other countries. By the end of 1980 he was working directly with the U.S. Justice Department which resulted in some of the biggest international law enforcement operations in history such as the Pizza Connection.

His friend and colleague, anti-mafia Judge Paolo Borsellino, who continued his work, was murdered in a separate bombing just two months later, on July 19.

Their legacy lives on

Thanks to their work in the 1980s, a recent  transatlantic police investigation managed to dismantle a network of US and Italian Mafia Families which planned to set up new trafficking routes for drugs, weapons and laundered money between Italy, the US, Canada, and Latin America.

Yesterday  a top Camorra mobster, Antonio Iovine, decided to collaborate with anti-mafia prosecutors in Campania, an important breakthrough for Falcone's colleagues who are continuing their work against organised crime.

Iovine was one the bosses of the powerful Casalesi clan from Casal di Principe, in the province of Caserta, whose death threats have forced anti-mafia writer Roberto Saviano into 24-hour police protection.