Milan: Once again Machine Gun Fire Shots Against Threatened Journalist
MILAN – They fired at her in a moving car with a machine gun from a van while she was driving. It happened on the highway Milan Fiori. The serious incident took place on January 30 and was reported by the victim herself: the journalist of the daily newspaper ‘Il Giorno’, Ms. Francesca Santolini, who has been the object of threats in the past for her work as a reporter. In the car with her there was also a friend. The two women were unharmed.
In 2008 Ms. Francesca Santolini received intimidations and threats because of her articles concerning people who had been arrested in Buccinasco, a town south of Milan, who were considered to be connected to the Calabrian ‘ndrangheta. As Ms. Santolini recalls: “I was receiving at the time letters and phone calls at work inviting me to stop writing articles about the arrests.”
In the southeastern suburbs of Milan, a degraded area where the organized crime is thriving, there have been other journalists too who have been the object of threats and intimidations. Mr. Massimiliamo Saggese, a collaborator with the daily ‘Il Giorno’, has recalled two attacks in the area where he had been the victim: in 2001 his car was set on fire; and in 2008 he was beaten along with a fellow journalist, for having explained in an article the dynamics of a car accident in which a child had lost her life.
The threats to Ms. Francesca Santolini are the second recorded case in Lombardy from OSSIGENO since the beginning of the year. The other case concerned Mr. Roberto Pelucchi, chronicler of the sport’ daily ‘Gazzetta dello Sport’, who has been repeatedly attacked by hooligans of the Atlanta club of Bergamo for having published news on a football betting scandal in which the local football star, Mr. Cristiano Doni, was impeached.
In 2012, OSSIGENO reported 12 cases in Lombardy involving 37 journalists. At the national level, since January 1, the Observatory reported 13 episodes of intimidation with 58 journalists involved.