Meridiana. 87. Mafia Capitale

Testata: Meridiana • Anno di pubblicazione: 2016
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pp. 288, ISBN: 9788867287963
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L’inchiesta «Mafia Capitale» ha portato a ipotizzare l’esistenza a Roma di una mafia autoctona, «originaria» e «originale», ovvero di un’organizzazione criminale assimilabile sul piano giudiziario alle associazioni di tipo mafioso, quindi perseguibile attraverso l’articolo 416 bis del Codice Penale. L’accusa ha avviato una vivace discussione non solo sul piano politico e istituzionale, ma anche tra gli addetti ai lavori e gli studiosi. Il problema non è solo quello di certificare – almeno per via giudiziaria – la presenza della mafia a Roma, quanto piuttosto di individuarne caratteristiche e peculiarità, di valutare cioè se siamo di fronte a una forma di criminalità organizzata che si può definire «di tipo mafioso». La questione è quindi innanzitutto giuridica e giudiziaria, ma chiama in causa anche la ricorrente domanda su «che cos’è la mafia», a cui studiosi e analisti rispondono da sempre in modo assai differenziato. Un aspetto importante dell’inchiesta riguarda l’aver messo a fuoco un rapporto peculiare tra mafia e corruzione, nel senso che la «capacità di pressione intimidatoria» del sodalizio criminale sarebbe scaturita in gran parte da un sistema pervasivo di accordi e scambi corruttivi. Risulta infatti che esso abbia esercitato un controllo su una porzione consistente dell’amministrazione pubblica capitolina attraverso una serie di «intese corruttive» con funzionari e politici. Dall’inchiesta emerge il coinvolgimento di un’ampia rete di imprese e cooperative attive nel campo dei servizi sociali, dell’accoglienza dei rifugiati, della gestione dei campi Rom, della raccolta rifiuti, dell’emergenza abitati- va, della gestione del verde pubblico. Sono tutti settori che sono stati interessati negli ultimi anni da intensi processi di esternalizzazione e privatizzazione, di cui è necessario tenere conto per meglio comprendere la loro vulnerabilità a pratiche illegali e a forme, più o meno organizzate, di criminalità. Le mafie trovano spesso varchi e opportunità in assetti di governance ispirate da logiche di mercato, che in realtà danno luogo a relazioni opache tra legale e illegale. Quello romano è infatti uno dei tanti casi che mostrano come i processi di deregolamentazione del welfare e, più in generale, dei servizi pubblici abbiano favorito la diffusione di pratiche illecite, av- vantaggiando comitati d’affari e gruppi criminali. In quest’ottica, le vicende di Mafia Capitale sono quindi rilevanti per esplorare modalità e dinamiche che riguardano l’area grigia delle collusioni e complicità fra mafie, economia e politica. Oltre agli articoli specificamente dedicati alla vicenda di Mafia Capitale, questo fascicolo comprende altri saggi che riguardano sempre il tema delle mafie e, soprattutto, dell’antimafia: la questione delle origini, la presenza delle mafie italiane all’estero, la continuità storica della «normale eccezionalità» della legislazione antimafia, il profilo degli amministratori giudiziari chiamati a gestire i beni sottratti alle mafie. Nel complesso questo numero, a partire dal caso di Mafia Capitale e allargando poi lo sguardo su altri temi, intende contribuire alla riflessione in corso su come riconoscere e perseguire le mafie in contesti molto differenti tra loro, analizzando in modo congiunto le strategie della criminalità organizzata e quelle dell’azione antimafia.

Mafia Capitale e dintorni
Vittorio Mete, Rocco Sciarrone

Around Mafia Capitale. Criminal expansion and the antimafia

The judiciary inquiry named «Mafia Capitale» by the roman judges has sparked a lively debate in the public opinion, the political class, the magistracy and among scholars from different disciplines as well. In this Introduction we discuss some aspects of this debate. The first aspect regards the possibility to recognize the mafias outside the areas they are rooted. The second one is about the nexus between mafia and corruption. On the whole, the debate is about the article 416 bis of the Italian Criminal Code and its use against criminal organizations other than Cosa nostra, ’ndrangheta, camorra and Sacra corona unita, as well as against systemic corruption. On this respect, in order to understand what mafias are, we think it is necessary to first understand how antimafia acts and how magistrates and other public officials use the legislative tools at their disposal. In the second part of this introduction we present the articles included in the monographic section, in turn divided into two parts: the first one collects the articles about Mafia Capitale; the second one brings together some essays dealing with other aspects of the mafia phenomenon.

Keywords: Mafia; Corruption; Antimafia.


Mafia Capitale: corruzione e regolazione mafiosa nel mondo di mezzo
Vittorio Martone

Mafia Capitale: corruption and mafia regulation in the Middle-earth

The inquiry Mondo di mezzo uncovered a new criminal Roman organisation, named «Mafia Capitale». The judiciary wanted to define it as a mafia in its own right, by applying art. 416 bis of the Italian Penal Code which until now has exclusively used only for the groups by the most well-known mafias of the South. It has opened a wide public debate about the concept of new mafias, with reference not just on the expansion of older mafias (the groups that moves away from the South Italy), but into the genesis of new criminal organisations that demonstrate typical mafia characteristics. At the heart of this debate, in this essay we attempt to reconstruct «Mafia Capitale» as a large network of social cooperatives that penetrates (through intimidation and corruption) public administration and public-private companies to get tenders in the management of migrant reception centres. Here a process of marketisation is carried out in a context of de-regulation and emergency, generating an opaque «market of migrants». Without adequate controls, this market has led to a licentious mix among public and private dealings, where it is then difficult to draw a line between what is legal or illegal. In this frame, the Roman mafia is capable of networking with entrepreneurs, politicians and public administration officials in order to obtain significant expansions in the management of the migrant reception centres.

Keywords: New Mafias; Corruption; Social services; Public contracts; Human trafficking.


Tra area grigia e «mondo di mezzo»: anatomia di Mafia Capitale
Alberto Vannucci

Between grey zone and Middle-earth: Anatomy of Mafia Capitale

A study of «Mafia capitale» – a mafia-type criminal organization operating in Rome, whose existence was revealed in by a judicial inquiry in November 2014 – is presented in this article, taking as main source judicial acts. The metaphor of «middle-earth» – taken from «The Lord of the Rings» – is evocatively quoted in a tapped conversation by one of the criminal bosses to describe its role as connecting tissue of cooperative interactions in a «grey zone». including political, institutional, economic and criminal actors. The activity of Mafia capitale as a «governance structure» in a network of relatively stable informal and illegal interactions is examined looking at the main resources it used and supplied to other subjects. The criminal group in fact mainly provided protection in the fulfilment of illicit deals using as an input, besides the threat of violence, ì reputational assets and social capital, while the market for corruption was the crucial arena where it realized its business, affecting also the operation of the political market. Finally, it is shown how some peculiar characteristics of Mafia capitale as an autochthonous criminal group can be taken as organizational and functional adaptations to external constraints of the institutional environment.

Keywords: Corruption; Protection; Mafia; Grey zone. The stakes


La posta in gioco di Mafia Capitale. Nuove mafie e interpretazione dell’articolo 416 bis
Elena Ciccarello

The stakes in the Mafia Capitale case. New mafias and the offence of mafia-type association

The Roman inquiry so-called «Mafia Capitale» opened a public debate on the connection between corruption and organized crime. Italian media and experts have criticized the judicial decision to classify an indigenous criminal group mainly composed of white-collar workers as a mafia. This essay analyzes the application of the offence of mafia-type association (article 416 bis of the Italian Criminal Code) to this rather peculiar criminal phenomenon. It explores the inquiry as a result of a specific interpretive approach. Result shows that Roman prosecutors propose a idealtypical paradigm of the mafia-type association crime and encourage the application of article 416 bis to any new criminal organizations, if there exists sufficient evidence of a recourse to the «mafia method». Taken from this perspective, the «Mafia Capitale» case is a response to the issue of the application of art. 416 bis to new mafias. Moreover, this inquiry contains a hermeneutical challenge that make it the litmus test for a progressive change in the current legal, judicial – and perhaps political and social – definition of what «mafia» is.

Keywords: Organized crime; Offence of mafia-type association; Whitecollar crime; Corruption. Mafia Capitale: Mafia-type association and political


Mafia Capitale: associazione mafiosa e fazione politica
Luciano Brancaccio

Mafia Capitale: Mafia-type association and political faction.

The criminal group known as «Mafia Capitale» undoubtedly represents an important innovation for the Italian judicial history and for the mafia studies. It is, assuming the prosecution, a recently formed mafia group with new traits. Unlike the traditional model of the mafia-type association, Mafia Capitale has an open network structure and specifically operates in the field of political corruption. As it is well known, political corruption is a tool of power and richness for traditional mafia groups; in the case of Mafia Capitale is the milieu it stems from. This new type of mafia group has several characteristics in common with those that the local political groups are taking on as a result of the party transformations. By using the categories of «clique» and «faction», borrowed from the anthropological studies, this contribution outlines the new traits of the group called Mafia Capitale and explores his nature of political association.

Keywords: Mafia Capitale; Organised Crime; Politics; Faction; Corruption.


Cosa c’è di nuovo in Mafia Capitale? Un punto di vista giudiziario
Marisa Manzini

What is new in Mafia Capitale? A judicial point of view.

The trial of «Mafia Capitale», a criminal organization so named by the Office of the Prosecutor of Rome, has once again raised the issue of applicability of the standard specifically mentioned in the Italian Criminal Code, art. 416 bis, to those criminal groups that do not occur as a direct or indirect expression of the traditional mafia, such as ‘Ndrangheta, Mafia and Camorra. The question is not entirely new. It is indeed already happened in the past that some fully autonomous organizations receive the judicial recognition of mafia associations. The deciding factor lies in the identification of the mafia method. In fact, article 416 bis requires for its configuration that participates of a criminal association acted exploiting the intimidating reputation of their criminal group, which creates an environment pervaded by an atmosphere of awe. In this respect the novum of Mafia Capitale is represented by its corporate relationship with corruption, which is used as a privileged instrument for influencing the entrepreneurs’ freedom of initiative, and at the same time acquiring full control of public administration. This particular criminal dynamic has led some judges and scholars to re-evoke the concept of «silent Mafia»: a new idea of the Mafia that tries in every way to avoid attention, preferring business and blackmails to public bloodshed. The question therefore remains very open-ended and debated. Certainly, given the importance of the court case, the outcome of this trial will shed light on the future ability of art. 416 bis to adapt to new forms of organized crime.

Keywords: Autonomous organizations; Mafia method; Corruption; Silent Mafia; New forms of organized crime.


La questione delle origini: mafia, camorra e storia d’Italia
Francesco Benigno

The question of the origins: the mafia, the camorra and the history of Italy

This article addresses in a new way the question of the origins of the Italian organized crime. In keeping with recent trends which emphasise a cultural approach to the history of crime, it aims to analyse what was written about the mafia and camorra during the first twenty years of the Kingdom of Italy (1861-1880). Analysing the texts then produced about organized crime it emphasizes the need to study these writings for themselves and in isolation from what would later be written: this approach avoids the anachronism of seeing the visions of the mafia and camorra developed in these discourses as mere premises and antecedents of the twentieth-century criminal organisation that we know. The intention here is to restore the semantic polyvalence of the contexts in which these thoughts were expressed and, in particular, to restore public order as the fundamental point of reference of their discursive register seen essentially in the political sphere. From these writings, there emerges a concept of public order which, rather than being protecting civil society from the threats of organised crime, was seen as defending the established political order from threats of subversion. Such an investigation is only made possible by linking the basically literary imaginaire of the time to the political struggle and to the theory and practice of the courts, of the police and of forensic medicine which defined crime in public discourse.

Keywords: Organized crime; History of Mafia and Camorra; Kingdom of Italy.


Le mafie italiane all’estero: un’agenda di ricerca
Joselle Dagnes, Davide Donatiello, Rocco Sciarrone, Luca Storti

The Italian mafias abroad: a research agenda

The paper aims to contribute to the debate about the presence and the activities of the Italian mafias in European and extra-European countries, proposing a research agenda on this topic. Taking into account the state of the art of the scientific literature about mafia movements, judiciary sources, and some preliminary findings of an ongoing research project, we specifically focus on two main issues. First, we discuss the problem of recognizing the mafia abroad, referring in particular to two different but closely-related points: 1) the difficulty in distinguishing mafia manifestations in non-traditional territories faced by law enforcement, judiciary institutions, politic and economic actors, media, and ordinary citizens; 2) the balance strategically sought by mafia actors between secrecy and revelation of their belonging to a criminal organization in order to pursue specific objectives. Second, we deepen the mafia presence abroad by identifying three ideal-typical scenarios, each of them driven by a main reason to move: 1) escaping from the original home territory; 2) managing illicit trafficking; 3) investing in the legal economy.

Keywords: Mafia territorial expansion; Mafia recognition; Agency and context factors; Italian Mafia; Organized Crime.


La normale eccezionalità. La mafia, il banditismo, il terrorismo e ancora la mafia
Antonino Blando

The very ordinary special legislation. The mafia, the banditry, terrorism and even the mafia

The «special legislation» in Italian history is a constant, almost normal. In the essay he insists on this very ordinary special legislation, trying to track her down in repressive events against terrorism of the seventies and in what used to combat the mafia of the following decades. Here it is assumed that the link between these two phenomena is inseparable: not the fight against terrorism, there would not be that the Mafia; so in the legal field and in that of investigative institutions, prison, political and administrative. In turn, the emergency legislation against terrorism inherits, as we will see, the characters of the fight against banditry, especially in Sicily, bloodied, for almost ten years, the end of the Second World War. In this fierce conflict they are taken, according to a logic of long memory of the institutions and its people, the techniques used by fascism during the «second repression» against the Mafia and then grafted into other bloody places like the eastern border during World War II. This «second repression» anti-crime, special and silent, was playing half the thirties to remedy the many loopholes open with the first spectacular and unsuccessful offensive of the new totalitarian state against the Mafia: the so-called «Operation Mori», between 1925-30.

Keywords: Mafia; Terrorism; Fascismo; Banditry; Special legislation; Investigation; Criminal organization.


Gestire i beni sequestrati e confiscati alla mafia. Una ricerca sugli amministratori giudiziari di Palermo
Rosa Di Gioia, Giuseppe Giura

Managing the mafia assets. The judicial administration in Palermo

More than thirty years after first Italian legislation against criminal proceeds has been passed, we address our attention to the judicial administration office, professionals (in particular lawyers and accountants) appointed by Courts for managing the organised crime and mafia seized and confiscated assets. The last update of legislation (legislative decree n. 159/2011) hasn’t solved the ongoing issues created by confused and contrasting goals pursued by different actors that have a stake in the future of judicial administration office, such as government, Criminal Assets recovery Agency, trade unions, entrepreneurs association and civil society. The aim of the paper, from a sociological standpoint, is to describe: how judicial administrator face the most common problems of judicial administration office; their capability to choose the way in which to implement Court ‘s orders of forfeiture and understanding if judicial administrators are new kind of professionals. Because of judicial administrators operating for the preventive measures Court of Palermo run at least the 47% of forfeiture criminal proceeds in the entire Italian country, we have taken into considerations their own activity, interviewing some of them and asking all of judicial administrators with more than two years of experience in the field to fill in a questionnaire.

Keywords: Sociology of law; Sociology of professions; Criminal proceeds; Administrative proceedings.


In guerra con la storia. La mafia al cinema e altri racconti
Rosario Mangiameli

At war with history. Mafia in movies and other tales

This essay deals with the relations between cinema and history in a case study: the film In guerra per amore (2016) by the Italian director Pif (Pier Francesco Diliberto). The film is about the Anglo-American occupation of Sicily during the second world war and it validates an old stereotype of the Italian tradition: Siculo-American mafia helped the USA Army to win the battle to land in Sicily and later it helped American officers to administrate the island. In this way the mafia revived in Sicily in the post war. This tradition is not confirmed by historians, but it is very popular on mass medias and nowadays on social networks. The power of social networks, in fact, increases the circulation of myths and false news. The essay provides an information for a correct historical reconstruction; in the second part the essay searches out the origin of the incorrect tales on relations between mafia and the American Army and it tells about three different moments. The first is contemporary with the battle for Sicily in 1943. In this case, fascist hierarchs explain the defeat according to the paradigm of the treason and, so, the mafia becomes a sort of fifth column. The second step is the age of the peasant struggles during the post war, when mafia became the enemy of peasants’ movement. The third step is the context of the Cold war, when left parties indicate in an American conspiracy of 1943 the source of the power bloc between Cristian Democrats party and mafia.

Keywords: History; Cinema; Mafia; War; Politics; Conspiracy thinking.


Le donne nel ceto politico locale. Un’analisi territoriale
Domenico Carbone, Fatima Farina

Women in local political class. A spatial analysis

The aim of the paper s to investigate the territorial differences in female inclusion in local political class in Italy. Many evidence are offered by current literature of the low and bad Italian female political participation especially if compared to European or international context. The paper contains a double level of analysis, the first one includes longitudinal analysis based on national data of elected women in local institution from 1986 to 2014. The second part of the paper illustrates the results from a national survey on Italian municipal councillors, where the traditional territorial discontinuity is evident especially for what concerns the sense of politics and the work-life paths of elected women. Both of level of analysis clearly show a geography of female participation far from been equal and equally distributed along the territories and the institutions.

Keywords: Women political participation; Female political representation; Local political class; Gender divide.