Today, Eurojust commemorated judges Giovanni Falcone and Paolo Borsellino, the Italian anti-mafia magistrates assassinated in 1992, by hosting the visit of a high-level Italian delegation and unveiling a plaque dedicating the work of the Italian Desk at Eurojust to the memory of these iconic judges.
The delegation, led by Mr Cosimo Ferri, Undersecretary at the Ministry of Justice, included Ms Maria Falcone, President of the Falcone Foundation and sister of Giovanni Falcone, Mr Franco Roberti, the Antimafia and Antiterrorism National Prosecutor, H.E. Mr Andrea Perugini, Italian Ambassador to the Netherlands, Mr Cuno Tarfusser, judge of the International Criminal Court, and Mr Nicola Lettieri, judge of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon.
The Italian delegation participated in a special session of the College plenary meeting dedicated to honouring the memories of judges Falcone and Borsellino. A video prepared by the Falcone Foundation was also screened. After the College meeting, the plaque was unveiled by Ms Falcone and Mr Filippo Spiezia, the National Member for Italy at Eurojust. To mark Eurojust’s commitment to preserving the ideas and legacy of judges Falcone and Borsellino and pass them on to younger generations, students from a school from Palermo participated in this ceremony via videoconference.
The President of the Italian Republic, H.E. Sergio Mattarella, sent a signed message of support to Eurojust’s initiative, in which he stated that: ‘I wish to express my sincere sympathy in memory of judges Falcone and Borsellino, who were among the first to realise the need for transnational investigations as the only way to overcome the rapid expansion of criminality. Today, international cooperation in investigations is an indispensable instrument for effectively combatting the mafia, which task must be carried out by overcoming local concerns and building up a genuine system for the coordination of investigations.’
Mr Ladislav Hamran, President of Eurojust, said: ‘Today, Eurojust has the privilege to honour the memory of two heroes, Giovanni Falcone and Paolo Borsellino, who, with their uncompromising commitment to fighting organised crime, paid with their lives. Eurojust reaffirms its commitment to continue the work of supporting the national prosecutors, such as the National Antimafia and Antiterrorism Directorate, shaped by judges Falcone and Borsellino, in this fight. Their bravery, commitment and sacrifice inspire us in our mission.’
Mr Filippo Spiezia, National Member for Italy at Eurojust, said: ‘On behalf of the Italian Desk at Eurojust, we are honoured to host this commemoration of the work of these two judicial pioneers, Giovanni Falcone and Paolo Borsellino, who taught us that the defeat of the mafia requires a high degree of specialisation of the judiciary and the police, as well as strong judicial coordination. The mafia operates without knowing the limits of local and national jurisdictions. Today is a tribute to Giovanni Falcone and Paolo Borsellino as universal symbols, and affirms that their vision still inspires the work and mission of Eurojust.’
Photos © Eurojust.
Group photo at the top of the page: From left to right H.E. Mr Andrea Perugini, Italian Ambassador to the Netherlands; Mr Filippo Spiezia, National Member for Italy at Eurojust; Mr Cosimo Ferri, Undersecretary at the Italian Ministry of Justice; Mr Ladislav Hamran, President of Eurojust; Ms Maria Falcone, President of the Falcone Foundation; Mr Giovanni Russo, Italian Antimafia and Antiterrorism Deputy National Prosecutor; and Mr Franco Roberti, Italian Antimafia and Antiterrorism National Prosecutor.