In March 2019 the carabinieri and the Palermo DDA arrested 25 people on multiple charges related to mafia membership and collaboration. Amongst the accused was the former regional parliamentary representative, Paolo Ruggirello. The Attorney General’s Office, represented by the Deputy Attorney General Carlo Marzella, at the conclusion of the indictment had asked for sentences totalling over 110 years in prison.
The first criminal section of the Court of Appeal of Palermo presided over by Judge Adriana Piras modified 7 of the 17 decisions of the court of first instance issued on November 20, 2020 by Judge Filippo Serio.
The final sentences were as follows:
- Carmelo Salerno (acquitted in the first instance), has now been sentenced to 12 years of imprisonment.
- Michele Martines’ sentence increased from 5 years and 4 months to 13 years and 4 months.
- Francesco Orlando’s sentence increased from 5 years and 4 months to 12 years and 8 months.
- Francesco Virga’s sentence increased from 8 years to 16 years and 8 months.
- Pietro Virga went from 8 years to 19 years and 4 months.
On the other hand, the Judge reduced the sentences of Francesco Russo who goes from 4 years to one year and six months, and of Jacob Stelica whose sentence was reduced from 4 years to one year.
Judge Piras also confirmed the verdict of first instance for Vincenzo Ferrara (3 years and 4 months), Francesco Peralta (8 years and 4 months), Giuseppe Piccione (8 years), Pietro Cusenza (8 years and 4 months), Mario Letizia (8 years and 4 months), Leonardo Russo (3 years), Michele Alcamo (3 years) and Antonino D’Aguanno (3 years and 4 months), Francesco Todaro (acquitted) and Tommasa Di Genova (acquitted).
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