Sabato, 22 Settembre 2018

Italy mourns police chief Manganelli


(By Denis Greenan).
Rome, March 20 - Italy on Wednesday mourned national
police chief Antonio Manganelli who died in a Rome hospital from
complications after a battle with cancer and an operation to
remove a brain swelling three weeks ago.
Manganelli, 62, rose through the ranks to investigate major
drugs, kidnapping and mafia cases.
He worked closely with late anti-Mafia magistrates Giovanni
Falcone and Paolo Borsellino, helped catch Cosa Nostra bosses
like Nitto Santapaola and collaborated with international forces
including the FBI.
Manganelli famously escorted the Sicilian Mafia's first
major informant, Tommaso Buscetta, into the courtroom to give
his groundbreaking evidence in 1986.
On the day of his appointment to lead the Italian police
force, June 25, 2007, he said: "I'm a beat cop who achieved his
childhood dream, becoming a detective".
Avellino-born Manganelli had a law degree from Naples
University and a post-graduate degree in criminology from Modena
He taught at Italy's top police academy and had a string of
publications to his name, ranging from investigative techniques
to kidnappings.
His reputation helped him when he had to stand up and take
the blame for police brutality at the Group of Eight summit in
Genoa in 2001, even though he was on holiday at the time of the
case that damaged the image of Italian police around the world.
Manganelli, No.2 to Gianni De Gennaro at the time,
apologised after convictions of several police officers last
year for horrific beatings of peaceful protesters, some of whom
were left in critical condition - an episode that judges called
a "stain on Italy's name".
Vowing that "such things will never happen again", he set up
a new police training school outside Rome.
Among the tributes Wednesday, Interior Minister Anna Maria
Cancellieri called Manganelli "a Number One as policeman and for
his moral qualities" while outgoing Premier Mario Monti said he
was "an example of a servant of the State".
Pietro Grasso, former national anti-mafia chief and newly
elected Senate Speaker, recalled the "very many years we worked
together as colleagues and friends" and praised Manganelli's
"uncommon investigative gifts".
Italy's various anti-Mafia organisations said they had lost
"a friend and ally" and said they would hold a rally to
commemorate him Thursday.
Gay groups praised his work to reduce discrimination, saying
they would name an anti-hate crime observatory he set up in 2005
after him.
Gaynet head Franco Grillini said he "established a positive
dialogue between the police and the gay community, helping usher
in a cultural revolution".
Italy's watchdog for minors said he had "made the
difference" in fighting crimes against children.
The centre-left Democratic Party recalled Manganelli's
"sensitivity, intelligence and professionalism" while former
premier Silvio Berlusconi said "Italy has lost a servant of the
State of great value".
Former interior minister and Northern League leader Roberto
Maroni tweeted "Ciao Antonio, life master and friend".
The hashtag #Manganelli became the top topic on Twitter
within hours of his death.
Leftwing writer and journalist Peter Gomez tweeted: "Great
policeman. Fought the Mafia, did not take part in the G8 and
apologised for what happened. Respect, memory and emotion".
Mafia reporter Lirio Abbate, who has police protection
because of Cosa Nostra death threats, tweeted: "He was the
Number One policeman. A great, decent person. A friend of mine,
Ciao Antonio".

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