Sicilian Mafia: Family dissolved in ACID 25 yrs ago awarded 2 million euros - CVIEW NEWS

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Monday, 23 July 2018

Sicilian Mafia: Family dissolved in ACID 25 yrs ago awarded 2 million euros


The family of a 12-year-old boy who was strangled by mafia members and his body dissolved in acid are to get more than €2 million in compensation for his murder.
A Sicilian court has now ordered a payout more than 22 years after Giuseppe di Matteo's death, and 25 years after he was first kidnapped because his mafia clan member father had become an informant. 
His mother and brother will receive €2.2 million in damages, to be paid for by the Italian government out of its fund for victims of the mafia.
Giuseppe di Matteo was kidnapped in 1993 by mafiosi disguised as police officers after they told him they would take him to see his father, Santino di Matteo, who was being held in police protection at the time. Instead, he was held for 26 months, during which time he was tortured and kept in squalor
Giuseppe di Matteo was kidnapped in 1993 by mafiosi disguised as police officers after they told him they would take him to see his father, Santino di Matteo, who was being held in police protection at the time. Instead, he was held for 26 months, during which time he was tortured and kept in squalor
Guiseppe's kidnappers sent photos of his torture to his father in an attempt to force him to retract his testimony, but he had already signed a legally binding deposition. His father had hoped he would become a vet because he loved animals 
Guiseppe's kidnappers sent photos of his torture to his father in an attempt to force him to retract his testimony, but he had already signed a legally binding deposition. His father had hoped he would become a vet because he loved animals 
The order to kidnap Guiseppe came from the notorious mafia boss Salvatore 'Toto' Riina, who died in an Italian prison last year aged 87. He was serving 26 life sentences for at least 150 murders.
The boy was held in squalid conditions and brutally tortured for nearly 800 days between 1993 and 1996 in an attempt to force his father, Santino di Matteo, to withdraw his anti-mafia testimony.
The final order to 'get rid of the puppy' was ordered by Giovanni Brusca, who was responsible for Falcone's murder.
'My son melted in acid': Santino di Matteo, the ex-mafia member turned informant whose son Guiseppe was strangled and dissolved in a barrel of acid in January 1996. He made a desperate attempt to negotiate his son's release but to no avail
'My son melted in acid': Santino di Matteo, the ex-mafia member turned informant whose son Guiseppe was strangled and dissolved in a barrel of acid in January 1996. He made a desperate attempt to negotiate his son's release but to no avail
Guiseppe's father Santino di Matteo had been a member of the Cosa Nostra clan, but turned against them following his arrest for taking part in the murder of the anti-mafia magistrate Giovanni Falcone.
He became the first of those involved in Falcone's killing to assist the police with the investigation.
In an interview to mark 25 years since his son was taken, Mr di Matteo said he would never forgive himself for what happened. 
He said: 'I think about it every day. How can there be people so evil to treat a child this way. 
'Guiseppe was playing with their kids. Brusca even bought a playstation to him, which they played together.'
He added: 'I knew Guiseppe wasn't coming home. When people get involved in stuff like this it's most likely they are never coming back.
'Unfortunately I was born into this situation.'
Anti-mafia judge Giovanni Falcone, whose assassination by a car bomb in 1992 was ordered by notorious mafia boss Salvatore 'Toto' Riina
Italian President Giorgio Napolitano looks at the remains of a police car destroyed during of the assassination of top judge Giovanni Falcone during a ceremony marking the 20th anniversary of the murder
Giovanni Falcone (left) was an anti-mafia judge who was murdered on the orders of Salvatore 'Toto' Riina in 1992
The mafia often try to ensure the bodies of their victims can never be found, a practice known as 'lupara bianca'. To this end, dissolving bodies in acid is a relatively common tactic.
The method means both that vital evidence is destroyed and that families are prevented from carrying out proper burials.   
In 2008, Guiseppe's mother said: 'We have won, Giuseppe has won, because I think thanks to him the mafia has been wiped out, if not completely then at least 70 percent.'
The family came face to face with Giovanni Brusca in court. 
Mafia 'Boss of bosses' Salvatore 'Toto' Riina, in his prison cell. He was behind 150 murders and ordered an informant's teenage son be dissolved in acid
Salvatore Riina when he was arrested for the death of Judge Giovanni Falcone. He died of cancer in 2017 while serving 26 life sentences
 The Sicilian mafia boss Salvatore 'Toto' Riina was nicknamed 'The Beast' and is believed to have first murdered for the Mafia aged 19. He died in November 2017
'The only thing I could do was throw the microphone at him,' Mr di Matteo said. 'I couldn't resist while he was talking about what he did.' 
'I always thought that Guiseppe was going to be out of the mafia circle. He loved animals and he always wanted to be a vet. He had a real passion.'  
The case sent shock waves through Italy as it contravened what many believe to be the mafia 'code of honour' - which is not harming women and children, despite the fact that they have been among the organisation's victims for decades.   
'Of course it's partly my fault,' Mr di Matteo said. 'He was my son. But it is 90% Brusca's fault. I would never have touched a kid.'

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