Anne's Blog

Peppino Impastato: Justice at Last

Date: November 8, 2002 - categories: , , , - Leave your thoughts

As there has been every year since Peppino Impastato’s murder by the Mafia, on May 9th, 1978, there will be a march in his memory in Cinisi (near Palermo), Sicily. If you are in Palermo at that time, you may wish to participate. We will be there. (Please feel free to contact me if you wish further details on the events.)

This year’s events in Cinisi which are a memorial service in honor of Peppino – and above all, an anti-Mafia demonstration – will take place on May 9, 10 and 11 and will be bigger than ever: finally, on April 11, 2002 – 24 years after Peppino’s death – Gaetano Badalamenti – who ordered his death – was condemned to life in prison by the Corte d’ssise di Palermo. The defendant, Badalamento, was present at the trial via a video connection to the prison in New York where he is being held for his Mafia activities in the U.S. Peppino’s brother, Giovanni told me that he may soon be out of prison in the U.S. and at that time, would be extradited to Italy for imprisonment here.

I phoned Giovanni Impastato recently to express our satisfaction at the long-awaited sentence (the result of years of effort on the part of the Impastato family and countless others) and asked how his mother received the news. Giovanni said this:

“My mother received the news with satisfaction. You know, Anna, that this (cdr. condemnation of Peppino’s murderers) has been the focus of her life. I can’t say that she rejoiced – none of us rejoiced. This sentence is a liberation for us. We are satisfied because a statement has been made – a message has been communicated to society. Yet the tragedy for me remains that the crime ever happened in the first place. A life sentence is ugly, a sad affair. The more there are, the clearer the message: that society has failed. This is not a moment of celebration.”

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Agenzia Viaggi Stoppini in Assisi handles all technical support for my guided visits (bus transportation, organization of meals, etc)