Thursday, March 19, 2015

Rare Case Where Extradition To Italy Was Refused Has Been Reversed By Brazil

Posted by Peter Quennell

The World Court in the Hague in the Netherlands which Italy used as a threat

This case shows how a remorseless Italy perseveres, and how it may involve the World Court.

This is the Cesare Battisti case (see his image below) which goes back to the early Berlusconi governments and beyond. It is not clear whether the Renzi government has been pressing Brazil hard but Battisti is very likely one day to be back in the land of his birth. And meanwhile he will remain locked up.

This is from a CNN report describing the status as of mid June 2009.

Battisti was a member of the Armed Proletarians for Communism, or PAC, guerrilla group in Italy.

He is alleged to have participated in a number of crimes, which led to his incarceration. He escaped from an Italian prison in 1981 and was granted asylum in France during the presidency of Francois Mitterrand…

In 1998, Battisti was tried and convicted in absentia of the four killings. For several years, France and Italy were embroiled in diplomatic spats over extradition requests.

Battisti later fled to Mexico, where he continued his work as a writer of thriller novels, and subsequently to Brazil. In Brazil, his fate was oftentimes unclear.

In January 2009, the Brazilian Supreme Tribunal granted refugee status to Battisti. But later it reversed course and supported extradition, giving then-President Lula the final say.

“Italy may not like it, but will have to respect it,” Lula said at the time. “This person is being accused of a crime which took place in 1978, and his accuser no longer exists to prove the veracity of the facts.”

Lula sided with the Italian’s claims that the conviction against him was politically motivated, and in the last days of his administration rejected the extradition. Italy protested.

Brazil gave Battisti a status just one step short of citizenship. The Berlusconi government then threatened to take the case to the International Court of Justice in The Hague (the World Court). Quite a threat.

That is something the Italian government could theoretically also do if there is a protracted wrangle over Knox. It may or may not have been one factor in what Brazil did next.

The Associated Press reports. This is from last week.

Brazil’s federal police on Thursday arrested former Italian communist militant Cesare Battisti on a judge’s deportation order.

The arrest comes despite former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva in 2010 rejecting Italy’s extradition request for Battisti, who is a fugitive from Italian murder convictions. Silva granted him asylum and had the Supreme Court approve that decision three years later.

However, also in 2013, the top federal appeals court rejected Battisti’s request to overturn a Brazilian conviction for using fake immigration stamps in his passport when he entered Brazil in 2004.

Federal prosecutors used that decision to seek Battisti’s deportation, arguing he had violated Brazil’s Foreigner’s Law, which prohibits foreigners convicted of a felony in another country from receiving residency.

Earlier this month, a federal judge ruled in favor of the prosecutor’s motion, which led to his arrest Thursday. He was being held in Sao Paulo….

There are several layers of appeals that Battisti can make, and it’s expected to take years before his case again reaches the Supreme Court for a new ruling….

We’ve noted before that if countries want dangerous perps back, there are certain ways to apply pressure direct. For example, Interpol Red, notices and also this.


Today March 19, 2015 the Daily Mail has a story headlined: ‘There Was an Atmosphere of Guilt before the Trial even Began’: Juror who served on the Amanda Knox jury reveals her “grave doubts” over ‘unfair’ trial that led to guilty verdict

A 48-year-old Job Center worker named Genny Ballerini is the juror. She calls the motive nonsense, says the proof is questionable, mentions bizarre testimony and flimsy evidence.

“When Ballerini heard the verdict and sentence she immediately protested and they (other jurors and judges, I guess) took note.”

But Ballerini insisted that the two professional judges on the panel had NOT tried to sway the jury.

That’s about sum and substance of the Daily Mail story today, complete with photos of Knox in long sleeved peach colored top with her short hair, and flashback photos of blue beret police escorts during the trial.

This seems like a case of let the games begin. There’s only one week until Cassation rules, and the Knox PR is working overtime.

Also I read Nina Burleigh’s recent article which The Machine posted a link to. Burleigh is really blind, and I don’t appreciate her comment about Mignini having sinus medicine in his office, as if to downgrade him. Doesn’t she care that Knox was putting cocaine up her nose most likely?

Posted by Hopeful on 03/19/15 at 11:02 PM | #

Hi Hopeful

Missing in the Daily Mail report is the fact that RS and AK were given six major opportunities before the Massei trial to argue their way out.

That includied one at the level of the Supreme Court.  They failed each time.

Also missing is that the Nencini appeal was not a repeat trial. It was merely an appeal.

Genny Ballerini ONLY got to hear a few points raised with a lot of spin by the defense. She never even saw the prosecution case.

Juries at that appeal level really need to go. Again and again they fall into these traps - and then Cassation smacks them down.

As the Hellmann jury found out.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 03/19/15 at 11:34 PM | #

Thank you, Peter, for insight on Genny Ballerini and her limitations. And guess what else is in today’s Daily Mail (March 19, 2015). Peter Gill who worked on remains of Russian Czar.

“Remains of last Russian Emperor and family killed in 1917 revolution could be exhumed”

Way down near end of article says:

“The church also points to a DNA test which failed to find a match between a handkerchief stained with Nicholas’s blood during an assassination attempt in Japan before he became tsar.

“They stress the bones said to be the tsar’s did not show marks from a sword wound in this attack.

“The scientists leading the identification of the tsar and his family were Peter Gill of the Forensic Science Service in Birmingham, England, Pavel Ivanov of the Genetic Laboratory in Moscow and Michael Coble of the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory in Rockville, Maryland, US.

“A final decision on exhumation will rest with President Putin.”

The Russian Orthodox Church doubts the authenticity of the bones that had DNA testing done on them.

It’s a very long article in Daily Mail, and I have no clue whether Peter Gill’s work will be proven right or wrong, but more tests may have to be run by other DNA experts for 100% certainty.

Posted by Hopeful on 03/20/15 at 12:11 AM | #

@ Hopeful & Peter - thanks.

To most explicitly Allay the recent widespread confusion re the alleged remarks of a juror at “the trial” of Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito, it was not “the trial”; it was at their Florence Appeal:


In the name of the Italian People
The Second Court of Assizes of Appeal of Florence

Composed of Messrs:

1. Dr. Alessandro Nencini, Presiding Judge and Extensor
2. Dr. Luciana Cicerchia, Judge of the Court of Appeal
3. Mrs. Elena Perrucci, Lay Judge
4. Mrs. Lucia Bargelli, Lay Judge
5. Mrs. Veronica Alessi, Lay Judge
6. Mrs. Marisa Lippi, Lay Judge
7. Mrs. Genny Ballerini, Lay Judge
8. Mr. Giovanni Cocco, Lay Judge”

Mrs. Genny Ballerini, was a Lay Judge at that Appeal.

Posted by Cardiol MD on 03/20/15 at 12:22 AM | #

Re: Burleigh,

Starch from a potato?

Knife kept for six days in a shoebox in an officer’s home?

Literary agent Bob Barnett is Amanda Knox’s lawyer in this matter? Whatever happened to Ted Simon?

Reported in Italy by Giulia Alagna? Paul Ciolino’s translator? 

The Supreme Court “ruled a year ago against an acquittal”? (Actually, that Hellmann was manifestly illogical)

She just repeated her book. Nina Burleigh has finally, jumped the shark.

Posted by Ergon on 03/20/15 at 04:06 AM | #

Comment left on Burleigh’s article:
Naseer Ahmad ·  Top Commenter · I travel, teach, and am a healer. at Around the world, really.

“This article is rife with factual errors which others have already pointed out. I mean, the knife held in a shoebox for SIX days? But one more point. You quote one of your sources, “The police also arrested local blogger and journalist Frank Sfarzo, who said they roughed him up.”

You were told he was arrested because his sisters called the police on a domestic disturbance complaint, they had to take his own mother away from his control because he was stealing her pension cheque, yet you continue to imply it was because of his criticism of prosecutor Mignini?

Some fact checker. Sfarzo is on trial for defaming Mignini by claiming he consorts with drug dealers.”

Posted by Ergon on 03/20/15 at 05:28 AM | #

I am shocked. Nicky Woolf has written a good article about the case for The Guardian:

These two paragraphs give the FOA lunatics sleepless nights:

If such a request was nevertheless made, the US would technically have to abide by it under the strict terms of an extradition treaty between the countries.

“If the Italian supreme court sustains the conviction, it will be nearly impossible for the US – despite the political uproar that will occur among those who believe she is innocent – not to extradite her to Italy,” says Steve Clemons, a senior fellow at the New America Foundation and foreign policy expert. “Emotions may run high, but in the end the relations between Italy and the US are deep, strategic, complex, and are designed to respect each other’s laws, even in controversial cases,” he added.

Posted by The Machine on 03/20/15 at 09:00 PM | #

Make a comment


Where next:

Click here to return to The Top Of The Front Page

Or to next entry Why Rogue Juror Genny Ballerini Was So Confused About The Appeal: It Was NOT A 2nd Trial

Or to previous entry Probable Final Cassation Ruling In 10 Days: Likely Scenario For The Immediate Future