Gaspare Mutolo - Pentito


While in prison, Mutolo started to think about becoming a state witness (pentito) in December 1991. Mutolo decided to talk in early May 1992, he insisted to see Paolo Borsellino after learning that Giovanni Falcone was unavailable (Falcone ceased to be a magistrate after he had entered the Ministry of Justice in 1991). Mutolo trusted them because he knew from firsthand experience how they had worked in the Maxi Trial. Mutolo had been the chief organizer of the massive heroin ring that Falcone had broken.

However, Borsellino ran into problems with Chief Prosecutor, Pietro Giammanco. Borsellino was supposed to work on cases in south-western Sicily and Mutolo was from Palermo. There was a risk that this bureaucratic obstacle would jeopardize his cooperation. He refused to talk to anybody else and might retreat because of the uncertainty with the authorities. The stakes were high, Mutolo was probably the most important possible pentito since the defection of Francesco Marino Mannoia in 1989: he had been a cellmate and driver of Totò Riina.

Finally, Borsellino was allowed to sit in when another magistrate questioned Mutolo. On July 16, 1992, Borsellino attended another deposition of Mutolo while he was frantically investigating the killing of his friend and colleague Giovanni Falcone. The next day Mutolo started to talk about the collusion between Cosa Nostra and high-level government officials. Two days later, on July 19, 1992, Borsellino and his escort of five police officers were killed in a car bomb in Palermo on the orders of Salvatore Riina and the Sicilian Mafia Commission.

Mutolo admits to have killed more than 30 people, but has not been convicted for any of the murders. In March 1993, 56 arrest warrants were issued for murders in Palermo on the basis of testimonies made by Mutolo and Giuseppe Marchese.

Read more about this topic:  Gaspare Mutolo

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