Italy – Clarifications on ‘Operation Ardire’ by anarchist comrade Elisa Di Bernardo


From RadioAzione
Translated by act for freedom now

 On 13th June 2012, ‘Operazione Ardire’ leads to raids on dozens of homes and the arrest of 8 comrades in Italy (Katia, Sergio, Alessandro, Giuseppe, Paola, Giulia, Stefano, Elisa) and 2 abroad (Marco Camenisch and Gabriel Pombo da Silva, who have been imprisoned for 23 and 29 years respectively, the former in Switzerland and the latter in Spain). The 8 comrades are now [February 2014] out of jail even if they are still being charged with articles 280bis, 270bis and 302 (‘attack’, ‘subversive association’ and ‘instigation to committing crime’, all this with purposes of terrorism, but the specific charges are not the same for all the comrades, the only common denominator being article 270bis). Since last year two different prosecutors have been dealing with these dangerous ‘terrorists’. Masterminded by prosecutor Comodi from Perugia, the investigation was in part taken on by prosecutor Pradella from Milano.

In August 2012 Stefano and Elisa should be released but they remain in jail as they got another order of remand in custody issued by prosecutor Comodi, who not having much in her hands invents a ‘danger of escape’ in order to justify the second arrest in a month and a half. During the review trial in September 2012, the prosecution from Perugia declares its territorial incompetence and here comes in the prosecution of Milan. At the court of cassation in December 2012, the declaration of territorial incompetence of the prosecution of Perugia is also extended to Giuseppe, Sergio and Katia. From this moment on, the two prosecutions work separately: while Katia, Sergio, Giuseppe, Stefano and Elisa become part of the ‘Milan investigation’, Alessandro, Paola and Giulia continue to be investigated by the prosecutor of Perugia, with one exception (whose reasons are unknown to us nor do we want to understand them as we are not interested in the intricacies of the law): Alessandro is being investigated by both prosecutors.
In February and March 2013 respectively, Paola and Giulia are granted house arrest, which ends without restrictions on 13th June 2013, after exactly a year of imprisonment. On the same day the door of the cage also opens to Alessandro and Giuseppe, but the comrades are subjected to restrictions: travel ban, obligation to live in their hometowns and reporting twice (!!!) to the police station. The same restrictions are inflicted on Stefano and Elisa, who are released on 7th September [2013], and Sergio, released on 20th December [2013].
Therefore 5 comrades [Alessandro, Giuseppe, Stefano, Elisa and Sergio] are currently being subjected to heavy restrictions. On 17th January 2014 the preliminary hearing for Alessandro, Paola and Giulia is held in Perugia, after it had been postponed a number of times: ‘not to be prosecuted in relation to the charges of article 270bis’! The charges of damage with the aggravating circumstances of terrorism are still in place. Unfortunately the restrictions on Alessandro cannot be lifted as he is also being investigated by the prosecutor of Milan, which hasn’t closed the preliminary investigation after over three years.
As for Marco and Gabriel, their situation is not at all clear and we can’t provide a proper update. In a year and a half Marco has never got any order of remand in custody and his name ‘only’ appears in the original order of remand in custody. As for Gabriel they never forgot his ‘debt’ with the Italian justice; but neither Germany (where he was detained at the time of this repressive operation) nor Spain have so far allowed his extradition to Italy, in spite of the fact that this has been expressly requested.
Elisa Di Bernardo

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