Reportage. The officers who beat, detained and tortured activists at the Diaz school in Genoa during the 2001 G8 conference could soon be given back their badges and guns.

Italian police who tortured activists in 2001 could return to work

Half of the policemen convicted for the infamous 2001 raid on the Armando Diaz school will soon be able to ask for reinstatement in the State Police. The other half have simply retired. Italian law allows it.

None of this is not surprising, but it confirms the impunity the members of the security forces — responsible for torture, beatings and other abuse of prisoners surrounding the G8 summit in Genoa — have enjoyed for nearly two decades.

The suspensions from public office, caused by the convictions passed down five years ago on some policemen sentenced after the events at the Diaz school, will soon expire, as reported by the Genoese daily Il Secolo XIX and La Repubblica. Half of the guilty agents can therefore be reinstated.

Among those who may resume their posts are the former head of the SCO security police Gilberto Caldarozzi; the former head of the Genoese Digos unit, Spartaco Mortola; and police officer Pietro Troiani. Meanwhile, Massimo Nucera, the policeman who said he was stabbed during the Diaz school clash, has already been reinstated.

The duration of the reintegration timeframes also depend on the conviction inflicted on the policemen. They were convicted for felony forgery of the signature in the reports stating that Molotov cocktails had been found inside the school.

The investigation and trial proved that those Molotov bombs (which later disappeared from the evidence locker of the police headquarters in Genoa) had been introduced by the policemen themselves to justify their action.

The 16 defendants received sentences ranging from two to 14 years, and most were for under four years. Even some of the top leaders, who had been until then under house arrest, like Francesco Gratteri and Giovanni Luperi, were convicted. Of the 16 convicted, half could retire, while there is a real possibility the rest will return to work.

The news could only bring controversy and recriminations to the political debate. Vittorio Agnoletto, former spokesman of the GSF, and Lorenzo Guadagnucci, co-founder of the Truth and Justice Committee, expressed their views on the news: “The police chiefs did not remove the convicted agents and, in fact, now it is possible for them to return to service, but we cannot be surprised at this, since we are talking about a police force that has ‘refused with impunity’ to cooperate with prosecutors. Today’s news certainly does not help the state police to regain the credibility lost in those days.”

“A disgrace, an insult to democracy: Those guilty of those violent acts should no longer represent the state,” said Maurizio Acerbo, national secretary of Rifondazione Comunista.

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