Saturday, October 25, 2014
– Program Update in Progress –
For a word of freedom and dignity
Mafias and corruption come from afar: they are the product of centuries of crime and violence, exasperated today by globalization, when in every corner of our planet humans become subjects of sale for clans who are ready to make as much money as possible on their skin. Drug trafficking and arms trade, human trafficking and prostitution are the most profitable businesses of mafia and transnational crime. On the other hand, the cost of the physical and psychological violence exerted against the weak, the last ones is not quantifiable. These are old and new forms of slavery that require a new “word of freedom” able to return full “dignity” to the human being, freeing it from the chains of crime. Equally functional to the growth of the power of the mafia is the everyday constant denial of the most elementary rights; therefore, the commitment in the fight against misery and poverty (see the contents of the campaign “Miseria Ladra”), in this particular view, takes on the value of a further declination of the battle against the mafia, starting from the use of assets seized from the mafia as a driver of development for policies of a modern welfare state at the service of the person. A further study will be devoted to the theme of prison and punishment as a function of the offender’s rehabilitation, as required by art. 27 of the Constitution, valuing the work that Libera network made especially with minors.
Human trafficking: the fight against slavery in the new millennium (OLE / TIE)*
There are many forms of human trafficking in Italy and Europe: sexual exploitation, exploitation on the workplace, forced or arranged marriages, begging, organ trade, etc. .. Interdependence between social and criminal phenomena. The delays of politics concerning the protection of victims and the measures against traffickers. The many reasons leading to the difficult enforcement of norms and the protection of victims. The role of the Church, the Churches … The role of sects. The role of Europe and NGOs. The importance of culture to act on the “demand” (prostitutes’ customers and illegal work). And again: prostitution and mafia in GDP? … What does it mean?
Mirta Da Pra, Gruppo Abele
– Glynn Rankin, Anti Human Trafficking Specialist, London
– Don Giancarlo Perego, director of Migrantes
– Diana Russo, deputy prosecutor at the court of Naples North
– Robert Iovino, FLAI CGIL
– Alexander Cobianchi, ARCI Puglia
The international drugs market (OLE / TIE)*
If you look at the main routes of international drug trafficking on a world map, you will notice how they run through land, air and sea routes wrapping the planet as a sort of spider web, connecting the countries where drugs are produced with those where they are trafficked and sold. The routes often pass by transit nations, where the traffickers’ logistics network identified land bases, harbors or airports … The industry of drug trafficking looks like a pyramid lying on a very broad basis, divided into two halves: one of them is made up of laborers, farmers, chemicals, armed guards who cultivate, harvest, refine and protect the leaves of the coca or opium poppy, or create synthetic drugs such as MDMA in the laboratory. The other half of the base of the pyramid is represented by drug dealers. At the center of the pyramid, there are intermediaries, i.e. those who neither produce nor deal: a level in which we find couriers, fixers, corrupt officials … Finally, above everything and everyone, sit the emperors of the drug multinational: not just business leaders but real absolute monarchs, perhaps the last pharaohs left in the current era.
Vincent Rosario Spagnolo, journalist for “Avvenire” and writer
– Franz Trautmann, Trimbos Instituut, Utrecht
– Salvatore Veltri, Customs Agency
– Fraco Maisto, President of the Probate Court of Emilia Romagna
Stefano Fumarulo, Mexico referent for Libera International
For a policy of legality and transparency
Mafias are in need of politics unable of providing answers and ready to be bribed, for failing in its oath of allegiance to the citizens and the state. Beyond the forms of sterile indifference, it is necessary to react to reaffirm the value of a “politics of legality.” Luckily, there is no shortage of men and women in charge of public functions who work for the common good, without favoring special interests and considering citizens as their only reference. The enhancement of networks of local authorities such as Avviso Pubblico and of good administrative practices during the days of Contromafie is aimed at rediscovering the positive role of politics for the affirmation of citizens’ rights and for the elaboration of social policies able to counteract favors and recommendations, which are practices functional to the mafia culture. Particular attention will be paid to the commitment of citizens and new media in the virtuous form of pressure on institutions, in order to achieve a “politics of transparency”, starting from the old and new forms of corruption (see the contents of the campaign “Future restarts”). A focus will be dedicated to the international connections between corruption and organized crime, in particular starting from the role of global finance.
The “very white collar” crimes (OLE / TIE)*
Is justice strong with the weak and weak with the strong? The eternal question becomes even more pressing when one thinks about how the criminal justice system works towards the so-called white and very white collars, i.e. those who manage and affect the system – because of their role and power – in its multiple components of politics, administration, economics, finance. In our country, the answer does not allow simplifications because the legislation of recent decades follows a bumpy and even contradictory ride; because judicial intervention, although not homogeneous, does not seem to decrease; because sometimes the so-called white and very white collar workers lose their (apparent) innocence because of the intertwining of economic and political crime with organized crime.
Alberto Perduca, deputy prosecutor of the Republic in Turin
– Vincenzo Ruggiero, Middlesex University, London
– Antonio Tricarico, Re: Common, Rome
– Paola Severino, Vice-Rector of LUISS University and a professor of economic criminal law
Strategies to combat the offenses in the banking and financial system (OLE / TIE)*
In recent decades there has been a complete and accelerated globalization of the banking and financial system, which is probably the most globalized sector of society. The capital and financial products circulate freely in every part of the planet and easily find somewhere to hide to become invisible: tax havens, off-shore locations, anonymous funds … In this way, they manage to evade taxes and money laundering of organized crime is favored. The absence of clear and shared rules at the international level and the proliferation of financial products make the work of magistrates investigating financial crimes increasingly complex; magistrates who operate with constraints coming from legal frameworks which are still at a national level.
Vittorio Agnoletto, FLARE/Libera
– Francesco Greco, Public Prosecutor of Milan
– Rodrigo Fernandez, KU Leuven, Department of Geography, Belgium
Sara Paci, Associazione Ilaria Alpi, Stop Blanque
For a request of justice and truth
If the “request for justice” is still strong today, it is because equality under the law as a principle struggles to affirm itself in everyday life. Our Country is overcoming recent decades marked by the attempt, by some segments of politics, to hinder the action of the judiciary, and by the unfortunate experience of “ad personam” or “ad personas” laws, often rejected by the Constitutional Court or at the EU level. In the hope that those times are forever gone, the regular functioning of the civil and criminal law alike is the priority to make every right due, and to reduce the weight of mafioso organisations and corrupt cliques. Under analysis, the proposals in the matter of the fight against the mafias, and the necessary norms to strengthen the fight against corruption. Also, a reflection will be launched on the key roles of some actors in criminal trials, from the witnesses of justice (the so-called “pentiti” or collaborators with justice – Translator’s note) to the bringers of civil action, whose “request for justice” is not just a need of theirs, but it is above all a public need, as witnessed by some of the hottest, recent legal trials and by the experience of the “SOS Justice” help desks. Last but not least, there will certainly be the open space dedicated to the meeting with the relatives of the innocent victims of the mafias, who with their presence witness the value of memory and commitment.
The European law and institutions in the fight against organised crime (OLE/TIE)*
Criminal organisations are more and more without borders: not only the traditional ones, the mafias, but those that operate in the economic and financial field, too, and those that operate in the political and administrative field. In the international sphere, several institutions intervene, both at the legislative and the judiciary/administrative level. Laws are either directly issued by the European Union, or advocated through the Conventions elaborated by the Council of Europe and other bodies, submitted to the States’ signature and ratification. On the global level, the UNO carries out the same function. International institutions that operate on other levels are in turn direct emanations of the Unions or the consequence of conventions between nations. Among the most relevant, Eurojust, Europol, Interpol. The seminar has the purpose of examining the law system, its effectiveness and its shortcomings, and of analysing the functioning of the supports that operate on the international level. Specific attention will be given to the perspectives of the European judicial space after the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty and of the Charter of fundamental rights, by now truly a reference text for the judge and the legislator alike.
Gherardo Colombo, former judge
– Emilio De Capitani, former Secretary General of the Civil Liberties (LIBE) Committee at the European Parliament
– Christian Kaunert, University of Dundee, Scotland
For an economy of solidarity and development
To analyse and study the role of mafias and corruption in the current global economic crisis signifies having understood that at the source of the current recession there is the idea of a profit that justifies anything, of a finance that has no bearing with real economy, of decisional processes that are not accountable to any national or supra-national, democratically elected, institutions. To stand accused, the power of the mafias in polluting the production processes, in infiltrating bids and tenders and investing their illicit earnings in the global finance, up to seriously threatening the affirmation of human rights itself. Working for an “economy of solidarity” means effectively tackling the criminal clans, improving the social and productive use of the assets confiscated to the mafias, in the South as much as in the North, in Italy as much as in Europe, to give birth to an “economy of development”. The tragic events related to the trafficking of waste and of endangered species, managed by the mafias, and those inherent to the pressures of rackets and usury, unveil illicit accumulation of wealth and mafioso businesses well over national borders: in order to defeat the toll of these constant threats, it is necessary to endorse experiences of sane, clean economy, ecologically and humanly compatible. The theme of gambling will also be the subject of analysis, considering the exposures in recent years of growing dependences related to this phenomenon and the role of criminal clans that impoverish the economy even with this activity.
Tackling Illegal Economy (OLE/TIE)*
Mafias, corruption, money laundering, tax evasion, economic and financial crime continue to take huge resources away from the real international economy, from everybody’s needs and rights. These are the most advanced forms of criminality, the most dangerous, the most complex to face and tackle. Different from each other, yet united in the arena of illegality and the talent to manage illicit profit, they find wide spaces today in the liberalisation of the international market. Tackling Illegal Economy is a EU-funded project centred upon the investigation and study of this new guise of organised crime: an exchange of knowledge to develop new understanding, to share methods and best practices in the fight against economic and financial crime. The main objective is the promotion of the re-use of confiscated property and assets, developing new networks of solidarity between European NGOs, institutions, and the academic. Today the debate is enriched by new elements, through international contributions: from the Financial Information Office of the Bank of Italy to OLAF (the European Anti-Fraud Office). To fight illegal economy with knowledge and innovation.
Tonio Dell’Olio, Libera
– Claudio Clemente, Director, Financial Information Office, Bank of Italy
– Giovanni Kessler, Director-General, OLAF
– Monica Massari, University “Federico II”, Naples, Italy
The role of financial lobbies and the European institutions (OLE/TIE)*
Our lives depend directly from the decisions taken at the EU institutions: the choices of the political institutions define the most part of the laws that then govern the individual Member States: those of the economic institutions determine the strategic choices for businesses and investors. The “lobbies” are actually groups of persons who act on behalf of companies and organisations, trying to address the choices of the European institutions to the favour of the interests they defend, and not always with licit means. Their presence in the EU seats is well known, measured and monitored, whereas their actual power is hardly known. Financial lobbies in particular proved themselves capable to steer the institutions in directions frequently opposite to public interest, yet protective of large groups. How they move, what they entail and how to limit their power.
Pietro Reitano, Director, Altreconomia magazine
– Yorgos Vassalos, University of Strasbourg, France
– Giulia Franchi, Re:Common, Rome, Italy
Confiscation and social re-use: European instruments and experiences (OLE/TIE)*
In April 2014, the European Parliament and the Council approved the Directive 42 on the on the freezing and confiscation of instrumentalities and proceeds of crime. It is undeniably a step forward, considering the different judiciary cultures in the individual Countries and their different perceptions of the phenomenon of organised crime. Especially if the Member States will adopt it within the envisaged deadlines. Different are the areas the confiscation applies to: from illegal proceedings to the extended confiscation, that represents the foremost novelty. Non-conviction based confiscation is still ruled out, due to strong opposition by the majority of the Member States, notwithstanding the recommendations of the European Parliament, with the exception of the cases of illness or escape of the suspect. Social re-use is introduced, although in a non-mandatory fashion. It is necessary to harmonise the European laws, in order to guarantee the mutual recognition of confiscation orders. All this also results from the good pratices developed in these years in Member States. Much more could, and should, have been done, in the face of the assault and huge misappropriation by the mafias of EU resources intended for fair and sustainable development.
Franco La Torre, Libera / FLARE
– Jesús Palomo, University of Madrid Rey Juan Carlos, Madrid, Spain
– Salvatore Costantino, University of Palermo, Italy
– Barbara Vettori, Università Cattolica, Milano, Italy
* Seminars organised by Libera International