Pushback Against Mafia Playbook Gathers Speed With Denial Of False Accusation of “Satanic Theory”
Posted by Peter Quennell
[Preston left, Spetzi center, and George Clooney who is at legal risk for his option on their defamatory book]
Previously on the mafia playbook:
As we have posted previously, the mafia and their handmaidens strive constantly to bring the Italian justice system down a peg or two. When not using dynamite, as they often have, they especially favor the weapon of character assassination.
The vilification campaign being run in the United States by David Marriott, Chris Mellas, Doug Preston, Bruce Fischer, Steve Moore, Michelle Moore, Nigel Scott, and David Anderson (and from Italy by Frank Sforza) seems to be right out of the mafia playbook, whether all of them know it or not.
How the mafia have been using the public relations campaign to their own advantage seems set to emerge further in at least five of the associated trials coming down the pike: those of Luciano Aviello, Frank Sforza, Mario Spezi, Raffaele Sollecito (his book trial) and Amanda Knox (her book trial)
And now Mario Spetzi, obviously a real glutton for punishment, once again piles on. Spetzi has had incessant run-ins with the Italian law - and now he seems to have entered some kind of self-immolation end-game.
With Doug Preston, Spetzi published several editions of their Monster of Florence scenario. These are widely discredited in Italy, not least because they are such obvious attempts to apply lipstick to a pig (half of the text is about an obviously red-handed and very very scared Preston trying to prove he did not actually melt down under interrogation for his probable felony interference in a case.)
Spetzi has been charged with interfering with and hampering both the Monster of Florence investigations and the related investigation (which involved Dr Mignini) into the Narducci drowning - a clear murder (the body was found bound and another substituted) though a nefarious group worked very hard to deny that. (They were all charged as well, and the Supreme Court has recently confirmed the correctness of that.)
In recent weeks the Supreme Court has given a firm order for both prosecutions against Spetzi to go ahead. How Spetzi stays out of prison if he is found guilty is anyone’s guess. Doug Preston came up with a calamity of an explanation for the arrest of Frank Sforza for domestic violence, but presumably his assistance wont be sought this time around.
So in face of impending prison Spetzi really watches his tongue, right?
No, in fact in a move bizarre even by his own standards, Spetzi on 29 September published a surreal “interview” with Amanda Knox in Florence Corriere. It once again repeats the felony claim that the prosecution charged Knox and Sollecito in the first place based only on some “satanic theory”.
The Perugia prosecution has never never NEVER claimed that. The Florence prosecutor has already moved into felony-investigation mode (this could cost Spetzi more years in prison) and on 3 October Florence Corriere published this correction below by the defamed prosecution (translation is by Yummi).
This unequivocal statement (far from the first but the most prominent) has its own legal status. It is a clear legal warning to the likes of Chris Mellas and Bruce Fischer that if they sustain the libel they are at risk of felony charges also.
The statement has already had a strong ripple effect in Italy. Many former allies - some of them not very savory - now feel that Spetzi has lied to and betrayed them for his own ends.
To the editor of Florence Corriere
I am Giuliano Mignini, the magistrate who performed the investigation and trials of first instance and appeal in Perugia against the people accused of the murder of Meredith Kercher, as well as the investigation into the death of Francesco Narducci linked to the one performed by the Florence Prosecution Office in relation to the masterminds of the “Monster of Florence” murders.
I saw reported the interview that the journalist Mario Spezi – a person accused in the Narducci case – did with Amanda Knox, a main defendant in the appeal trial that will start today – published in the Corriere Fiorentino on Sep. 29.
In two recent cases the Court of Cassation has annulled verdicts, which acquitted Knox and Sollecito, and which decided [by Judge Micheli] a dropping of charge against Spezi (the parts regarding ‘lack of certainty about malice’ were annulled too).
Therefore I don’t need to add anything further on that point. Instead, I need to point out the falsehood of an assertion which Mr. Spezi makes at the beginning of his article, as he tries to explain the reason for a link which, in his opinion, allegedly exists between the two cases, the one related to the Monster murders and Narducci’s death, and the one about the Kercher murder.
Mr. Spezi’s text says: “… a strangely similar background, for two different cases, behind which the magistrate thought he could see satanic orgies on the occasion of Halloween for Amanda, and ritual blood sacrifices as a worship to the Devil in the Monster of Florence case…”.
This is an assertion that Mr. Spezi and crime-fiction author Douglas Preston have been repeating for years, but does not find the smallest confirmation in the documentation of the two trials, nor in the scenario put forward by the prosecution in which the Meredith murder (which didn’t happen on Halloween but on the subsequent night) was the consequence of a sex hazing to which Meredith herself did not intend to take part, and, above all, it was the consequence of a climate of hostility which built up progressively between the Coulsdon girl and Amanda because of their different habits, and because of Meredith’s suspicion about alleged money thefts by Knox.
Furthermore the object of the proceedings in the Narducci case is the scenario about the murder of the same Narducci and the attempt, by the doctor’s father and brother, to conceal the cause of his violent death, and this included the background within which the event – which was a homicide in my opinion and in the opinion of my technical consultant, coroner Prof. Giovanni Pierucci of the University of Pavia – had developed and taken place.
I had already denied several time assertions of such kind, but Mr. Spezi and Mr. Preston, and some people connected to them, go on repeating a lie, apparently hoping that it will become true by repeating it.
Another astonishing fact is that, despite that I was the prosecutor in the Kercher trial together with my colleague Manuela Comodi and then subsequently with my colleague Giancarlo Costagliola [at annulled apeal], and despite that I limited myself to formulating judicial requests which were all agreed to by a multitude of judges and confirmed by the Supreme Court, I am still considered as the only one responsible for an accusation against Ms. Knox and Mr. Sollecito, by twisting its content in various ways.
In the Narducci case, in the same way, I simply limited myself to performing the investigation and requesting the remands to trial, and the trial will have to start again now because the Supreme Court has annulled the dropping of charges [by Judge Micheli] and sent back the trial to another preliminary judge in Perugia.
The purpose – quite overt – of such endlessly repeated lies, is to defame the investigator, picturing him as a magistrate who is following alleged personal obsessions rather than sticking at facts, as instead he is.
The hope that such conscious misrepresentation of reality could bring advantage to the defences (foremost that of Spezi himself) is consistent with a bad habit which has all along flourished in Italy but is now also copied abroad.
Therefore I ask you to please publish my rectification against false and seriously defamatory information.
See also this overview of the two cases requested by our poster Kmcvick.
What an excellent and precise letter. He is balanced and intelligent. It is terrible the way the American press has vilified this man. I wish there was some way to change that. But it seems out of control with the rumors and falsehoods repeated over and over.
@ The Machine - I’m with you.
“The first testing of the knife will start at 2:00 pm on 10 October (Thursday, 8:00 am, US Eastern Time) at the headquarters lab of the Carabinieri in Rome, a lab with an excellent reputation separate from that of the Scientific Police which has not been a part of the case before.”
“If the scientific officers find nothing that can be tested they are to inform the court immediately. November 6 and 7 were assigned to discussion of the knife but November 7 has been removed from the court’s calendar.”
“inform the Court immediately” When will We know if they find nothing testable?
Roll on November 6!
Thanks Pete and Yummi for this update and translation of Mignini’s text.
Spezi (with Preston in the dark shadows) is trying to run faster than the Law, but I don’t think he has enough endurance ... his time is running out.
I trust that Prosecutor Mignini will finally get his opportunity to have Spezi recognise what a load of crap he (Spezi) unleashed.
As you have so carefully illustrated “satanic theory” is far from the only lie Spetzi & Preston have propagated.
You just about wrote the book (this travesty created by Spetzi & Preston SHOULD be the subject of a book) and there is a link to your fine work in the post (last para).
Spetzi and Preston get up to separate mischiefs (as in the Florence Corriere article written just by Spetzi) but the major mischief they collaborated on together was their MOF book.
How disappointing to read that George Clooney is interested in doing business with Mario Spezi. He sees himself at a modern day ratpack type.
The US media has been so successful in broadcasting twisted facts and lies about Meredith’s murder but also the new healthcare system. Further to my meeting with the American couple on the train from Florence i discovered this.
When i could not stay in the presence of these people any longer i had to leave but i have too much Irish in me to walk away without getting one in.
I said i have only just found out that Americans are being asked which do they prefer Obamacare or The Affordable Care Act. I said i am told they are one and the same but most people do not know this because the media has confused them.
The look on the mans’ face told me right away he is in the camp of the confused and what i had just said was news to him. So the right wing media has succeeded in confusing the average American about the healthcare system for everyone which is about to begin.
To be fair to George Clooney (who I for one quite admire, not least for his efforts to slow the killing in the Sudan where I was earlier based for the UN) he has sat on the MOF project for three years, even though the official side of the MOF case has never been shared with him.
The GOOD book on the case which outsells Spetzi & Preston in Italy 10 to 1 is Il Mostro by Michele Giuttari who was directly involved in the case, THAT is the movie George C should make.
Of course Dr Mignini is so respected now that he could stop the movie with his little finger if it shows signs it might move.
You will know that George C lives part of the year in Italy at his villa on a northern lake and the last thing he needs is to ruffle a whole lot of Italian feathers by getting into bed with anti-justice mafia co-travelers.
Take a look at the news on the movie deal that has been posted on the IMDB site most of it 30 months old.
Who to communicate to if anyone would like to write to to warn George C about the book is shown below (click for larger image):
I’ve had numerous discussions on this case on public forums, most notably on CNN and a Zodiac website.
This is one of the most common arguments made by people arguing for Knox’s innocence. That she wasn’t the first American Migmini accused of satanistic murder etc.
Now could someone clarify for me. Preston was arrested before while investigating the MoF case, correct? And it wasn’t for being involved like Dateline lead people to believe, but for obstruction, correct?
As I recall it, Preston and Spezi came across information that would have helped the investigation and withheld it from the police? Could someone clarify please.
Here is a quick overview of how the two cases relate and Dr Mignini’s history to get you up to speed. Later, you might read all of Kermit linked to above, and these vital posts by Yummi who plumbs some of the murky depths.
One problem for all of us is that there is far less ACCURATE information about the MOF case in English in part because it is old and a bit of a yawn. Also in part because Preston’s & Spetzi’s MOF book grabbed the high ground and wrongly conflated the MOF case with aspects of Meredith’s case. So the English-language fact base is not only small but largely wrong.
The main theory of the MOF case is that there is or was a satanic group of powerful well-connected figures in Florence who needed body parts for a ritual and they organized some simple working class men to be their front. Michele Giuttari was long the lead investigator for that and he did a good job.
The word “satanic” in conjunction with the MOF case goes back around FORTY YEARS and use of it to describe that case is according to all evidence correct.
It fell to Dr Mignini to be required to get into the Narducci drowning case because a complaint was filed that it had been brushed under the rug. Narducci was believed to have been a member of the satanic sect or in some way associated; as a surgeon he could have handled the body parts, and his murder may have been to shut him up.
Giuttari and Mignini using a bug authorised by a judge caught a prosecutor in his Florence office lamenting that their investigation of the MOF case was stymied because their hands were tied (the implication was that the satanic group was looking after its own).
This prosecutor turned rogue, and along with a rogue judge achieved a conviction of Giuttari and Mignini. At the first level appeal this was reversed; and recently the Supreme Court roasted the original conviction, leaving Mignini and Giuttari holding the high ground again. (Both are greatly liked and respected in Italy.)
Mignini also encountered a group of about 20 stymying and ridiculing his every move on the Narducci case, including some reporters and this guy Spetzi.
THEY said Mignini was seeing satan behind every bush and claimed he saw the Knox motive as a satanic ritual. Mignini didn’t, the satanic label goes back 40 years, and he never ever applied it to Meredith’s case. Nevertheless for mysterious reasons Judge Micheli dropped the case, and let them all get off.
The Supreme Court roasted that too, and said pursuit of charges against the 20 should go ahead.
Giuttari is a novelist now and Mignini prosecutes only appeals, so neither is any more involved, but both the MOF and Narducci investigations go on.
Preston has published several differing accounts of how he connected with Spetzi and got in. His life work had been about private dicks running rings around dumb cops. Their MOF theory was that the dumb cops couldnt see that it was the work of a single serial killer. It reeks of the kind of hubris that often precedes a fall.
Why Mignini invited Preston to join him for a brief interview was to find out why he and Spetzi were planting evidence for their theory and using false names. All present were astounded to see Preston wobble like a jelly and wail and cry while he lied and lied and lied. Mignini thought he’d be smart after this heads-up and scamper off and shut up.
Spetzi is said to be an alcoholic and far from quite right in the head. It is hard to believe Preston’s head is quite right either, but if he had restrained Spetzi and not conflated the two cases and lied to a global audience about Mignini being obsessed with the “satanic” Spetzi would be way better off now.
Preston as a Typhoid Mary? Seems so. Frank Sforza and Nina Burleigh and Bruce Fischer and Nigel Scott among many others have pushed the erroneous satanic angle thinking Preston represented truth.
There are several points to ponder here:
1. America (US) is a big country and we have about 300 million of them.
2. Americans are fond of traveling and they love to show off and anyone can make out an American abroad- just from the looks!
3. While most Americans are very reasonably law abiding at home, somehow when they are off-shore, they have, more often than not, close shave with the law.
4. Most Americans are under the false belief that an American can do no wrong (don’t flame me, please!) but they really lack tact.
A large number (I do not have the number though) of Americans are in foreign prisons and lots of people at the foggy bottom do not know how to get them out.
Europe is the first choice of destination for most Americans (most of them came from there) and they often feel kind of nostalgic (yes!) when they visit Europe. This is rather expected.
Being the material boy or girl they are, they love shopping. And partying. Most cannot drink much, but they want to show off. And get drunk first!
There is nothing strange for a Italian magistrate to find two American murderers.
Professor Chami raises interesting issues indeed.
As I live in greater New York where many are kinda manic I find most Americans elsewhere to be pretty low-key at home, though they can stand out a bit elsewhere.
They also seriously long to travel and most students are very keen on study abroad, which affects them for the good no-end. The country very badly needs more of that.
Many head for Italy and especially head for Perugia because Italy has the reputation (rightly) of being the party capital of the world.
It has been scientifically observed that when they get to Europe their drug-use and alcohol-use often spirals up by half and that can get them in big trouble.
Many also come off their medication, for example for attention-deficit syndrome and bipolar conditions, and that can get them in big trouble.
And finally Knox was not on a formal study abroad program, which would have had monitoring and constraints, although she lied to the world that she was.
See also these posts.
Dr Mignini shows considerable restraint in his even-tempered and accurate letter. The message should be quite easy for even the most strident Groupie™ to understand.
what believing said:
Mignini is “balanced and intelligent”, the finest qualities in a judge.
The overt effort to defame him deserves censure.
Patient in tribulation, he has suffered so much mockery and abuse for doing his job, and doing it perfectly within the confines of law and fairness.
As Dr. Mignini says there were many judges like Comodi, Costagliola and a multitude of other judges who confirmed Mignini’s judicial requests along with the judges of the Italian Supreme Court.
All of these people hold the same opinion as Mignini.
Yet his detractors aim to isolate him as some lone magistrate with obsessions.
Mignini is the tip of the spear of a solid prosecution case that rested formally not on unprovable theories satanic or otherwise, but on all too human motives. It is the level headed Mignini who must remind the dishonest FOA and their media flunkies of the facts.
Many judges have agreed with Dr. Mignini including the Supreme Court. The FOA dredge up the MOF case in a wily attempt to confuse matters, then lie about both cases to discredit him.
His stern letter requesting that facts stay uppermost and a reprimand to those who twist the truth, is an elegant reflection of a fair and honest mind.
Lovely comment, Hopeful…..and Stillcho, thank you
Doug Preston sure has got himself in a nightmare of a mess and it is hard to see any way out of it.
He will be required to attend several of the upcoming trials listed in the post, because his role was very crucial in each case. These cases specifically for now:
1) The Sforza trial, because he fed into Sforza’s wild conspiracy theories and claims of a satanic-obsessed Mignini.
2) The Mario Spezi trial, for obvious reasons; the two serial troublemakers are joined at the hip going back ten years or more.
3) and (4) The Knox and Sollecito book trials, because both books quote his “satanic’ claims as gospel.
(5) Any trial of Joel Simon and the Committee for the Protection of Journalists for their worldwide defamation beamed at the president of Italy..
Sforza, Spezi, Knox, Sollecito, and Joel Simon could all feel that he lied to and betrayed them, and dump on him to get a break at their trials.
And if he is a no-show at any of the five trials, perception of his malicious meddling will go up, and he will become a more likely candidate for his own trial.
Breaking news from Florence and Rome.
Google conceded quite readily several years ago to removing Frank Sforza’s Perugia Shock site which they hosted, because that site was riddled with defamation.
Now we hear that the government of Italy will once again be in touch with Google to remove millions of hits on PR claims that are defamatory. We have just tweeted the following:
Italian nat communications police entering case because of massive internet campaign out of mafia playbook; likely FBI also.
A few days ago our main poster MediaWatcher posted this very percipient post about David Marriott’s failed PR campaign.
Let us take a wild guess on the future of such campaigns. There wont be a whole lot of others.
It will be very satisfying and fitting if the court judgement proved to be the nemesis for Knox/Sollecito AND their kind of diabolical PR campaign.
Surely in the future the media could be prevented from publishing opinion pieces (as distinct from reportage) when trials are still ongoing, even if they are trials being conducted in foreign courts?
Otherwise courts are not the high authority they are meant to be and are very open to contempt. Some international agreement would be necessary but you’d think it would be in the best interest of all countries to have a policy on this.
When removed those defamatory hits there wlll be no FOA arguement left.
Is this a sign for possible extradition? (first the tempering of the field)