Italian Prosecutor Appeals Andreotti Acquittal on Murder Charge
Public prosecutors in Perugia have appealed a court decision dismissing charges against former Italian premier Giulio Andreotti and five other people accused of murdering a journalist, court sources said Saturday.
Andreotti, 81, was acquitted in September 1999 by a court in Perugia for the murder of investigative journalist Mino Pecorelli, killed in March 1979 in Rome as he was about to publish potentially damaging material.
Andreotti's five co-defendants -- judge Claudio Vitalone, former right-wing terrorist Massimo Carminati, and three others with reported Mafia ties, Gaetano Badalamenti, Giuseppe Calo and Michelangelo La Barbera -- were also acquitted.
The prosecutor had called for life imprisonment for all the accused.
Pecorelli, 51, was struck down by four bullets, one in his mouth Mafia-style, on March 20, 1979 in a Rome street. The prosecution claims Pecorelli was assassinated by a hired Mafia killer as a service to Andreotti.
The former premier was alleged to have masterminded the killing to avoid Pecorelli's publication of the diaries of slain Christian Democratic leader Aldo Moro, which were highly critical of Andreotti.
Andreotti, a seven-time Christian Democrat premier who was also a minister 21 times, pulled the strings in Italian politics for decades until the early 1990s.
In a separate case in July, the public prosecutor's office in Palermo appealed a court decision dismissing charges against Andreotti for collusion with Sicilian mobsters -- ROME (AFP)
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