• Prisons.

    Mayor: "San Gimignano structure abandoned to its fate"


22 September 2019 Immediate suspension for the four prison policemen who received a disqualification order from the judicial authority and "due disciplinary assessments" for the fifteen who received a notice of guarantee.

The reaction of the Ministry of Justice - Department of Penitentiary Administration informed by the Public Prosecutor's Office of Siena of the conclusion of an investigation carried out in collaboration with the same Penitentiary Police and concerning alleged ill-treatment by agents on duty at the San Gimignano House of Prison, who were accused, among others, of the crime of torture.

The complex and delicate investigation involved 15 prison policemen on duty at the Tuscan institute and originates from the complaint made by some inmates about alleged beatings that took place inside the prison.

The accusations made by the Siena Prosecutor's Office range from threats to aggravated injuries, to the false ideology committed by a public official, to torture.

In starting the process of administrative measures within its competence, the DAP trusts in an accurate and prompt assessment by the judiciary, but at the same time expresses the utmost confidence in the work and professionalism of the members of the Penitentiary Police Corps who carry out their work in an ethically impeccable way.

Knows: "We trust in the judiciary. Nothing to hide"

"Compared to the news of Penitentiary Police officers serving in the San Gimignano prison under investigation for alleged violence against prisoners, I invite everyone not to draw hasty conclusions before the due judicial investigations. Judiciary because the Penitentiary Police, in San Gimignano as in every other Italian prison, has nothing to hide ".

This was declared by Donato Capece, general secretary of the Sappe Penitentiary Police Autonomous Syndicate, the first and most representative organization of the Basque Azzurri.

"The commitment of the first Syndicate of the Penitentiary Police, the Sappe, - he adds - has always been and is to make the prison a" glass house ", that is a transparent place where civil society can and must see us" clearly ", because we have nothing to hide and indeed this will allow us to appreciate the precious and fundamental - but still unknown - work carried out daily - with professionalism, self-denial and humanity - by the women and men of the Penitentiary Police. Just to say, in the last 20 years the women and men of the Penitentiary Police have foiled, in the country's prisons, more than 21,000 suicide attempts and prevented almost 168,000 acts of self-harm from having harmful consequences ". 

Antigone: "Truth be ascertained soon"

"In cases of torture, ascertaining the truth is a race against time. A race that must be facilitated by the institutions. A race that requires all operators to break the wall of silence who have seen the abuses and violence. In this case we are reassured by the promptness of the work of the judiciary and by the collaboration of the prison administration department ".

Patrizio Gonnella, president of Antigone, underlines this in a note, commenting on the investigation

of the Siena prosecutor's office.

"In Italy - he adds - finally judges have at their disposal a law (albeit improved) that prohibits and punishes torture since 2017. This has been a twenty-year battle for Antigone. We are in the first cases of application of this law. In recent weeks Antigone had filed a complaint with the Monza public prosecutor for similar events that occurred in the prison of the city of Brianza. Also in that case we witnessed an immediate intervention by the institutions (national guarantor of persons deprived of liberty and regional superintendent of the prison administration). that decisive case could be the recordings of the cameras in the isolation sections. We ask, therefore, that in San Gimignano as well as in Monza, the definition of the trial be reached quickly in the interest of justice and legality ".