Francesco Madonia

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Francesco Ciccio Madonia, the unquestioned patriarch of the Resuttana Mafia family

Francesco Ciccio Madonia (Palermo, March 31, 1924 – Naples, March 13, 2007) was the Mafia boss of the San Lorenzo-Pallavicino area in Palermo. In 1978 he became a member of the Sicilian Mafia Commission.

Ciccio Madonia became the unquestioned patriarch of the Resuttana Mafia family and mandamento. He replaced Antonino Matranga, murdered in 1970, and strongly supported the Corleonesi during the Second Mafia War in 1981-83. In 1987, at the Maxi Trial, he was sentenced to life for murder, but he went on running the Family from prison; first through his sons Antonino, Giuseppe and Salvatore Salvino Madonia, all three jailed, after that through his brother Diego, the reputed acting boss.

Life sentences[edit]

Ciccio Madonia had several life sentences and was involved in several of the most bloody events in the 1980s, such as the murder of Piersanti Mattarella, the Christian Democrat president of the autonomous region of Sicily in 1980; general Carlo Alberto Dalla Chiesa, the prefect of Palermo in 1982; police chief Ninni Cassarà in 1986; and Libero Grassi, the Palermitan businessman who was killed by the Mafia after refusing to pay extortion money, known as "pizzo". Francesco Madonia was involved in the failed bomb attack against Antimafia judge Giovanni Falcone at Addaura in 1989 (which is in the Resuttana mandamento) and the killings of Falcone and his colleague Paolo Borsellino in 1992.[1]

He was arrested in 1987 together with his son Giuseppe Madonia. However, despite his life sentence at the Maxi Trial, the most important Mafia bosses of the Commission spent months at a time not at Ucciardone prison, but in hotel-like conditions of Palermo’s Ospedale Civico (Civic Hospital). The director of the hospital was Giuseppe Lima, the brother of Salvo Lima, member of parliament suspected of mafia ties.[2]

Extortion[edit]

In 1989, the police discovered the hideout of Francesco’s son Nino Madonia that contained an account book of the family’s extortion business which listed some 150 businessmen.[3] The ledger included the names of car dealers, drugstores, restaurants, and small factories that were lined up next to the amounts of their pizzo – from about US$150 to US$7,000 a month. None of the more than 150 businessmen on the list would help identify the extortionists.[4][5]

Francesco Madonia has been convicted for ordering the killing of Libero Grassi in 1991, the Palermo businessman who refused to pay protection money (the so-called pizzo) and went on national television to denounce the practice. Grassi's business was in the area that is controlled by the Madonia clan. His son Salvatore Salvino Madonia was the killer.[1]

Death[edit]

He died on March 13, 2007, in a prison hospital in Naples where he was serving his life sentences under the severe conditions of the article 41-bis prison regime.[1]

In November 2008, Italian police arrested five people, including Maria Angela Di Trapani, the wife of jailed Sicilian Mafia boss Antonino Madonia, and seized assets worth 15 million euros, anti-Mafia investigators believe belong to the Madonias. The assets include farmland and farm buildings, villas, apartments and businesses in Sicily.[6]

Madonia's jailed sons, Antonino, Giuseppe and Salvatore are all in high-security detention under the harsh 41-bis prison regime for Mafia prisoners that is meant to severely restrict their contact with other prisoners and the outside world. Nevertheless, they have continued to run the Madonia clan, issuing orders via Di Trapani and exchanging information with the Di Trapani clan, according to investigators.[6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c (Italian) Morto Madonia, boss di Resuttana, La Repubblica, March 14, 2007
  2. ^ Stille, Excellent Cadavers, p. 276
  3. ^ Stille, Excellent Cadavers, p. 346-47
  4. ^ A Bullet For a Businessman, Business Week, November 4, 1991
  5. ^ Paoli, Mafia Brotherhoods, p. 169
  6. ^ a b Police arrest five Mafia suspects in Sicily, AND Kronos, November 25, 2008