Domenico Leccisi

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Domenico Leccisi
Born 20 May 1920
Molfetta, Kingdom of Italy
Died 2 November 2008
Milan, Italy
Cause of death heart and respiratory disease
Known for Stealing the remains of Benito Mussolini
Political party Italian Social Movement
Movement Neo-Fascism

Domenico Leccisi (20 May 1920 - 2 November 2008) was an Italian politician, who is best known for stealing the corpse of the fascist dictator Benito Mussolini from an unmarked grave in 1946.[1]

Grave robbing incident[edit]

On the eve of the first anniversary of Italy's liberation from Nazi occupying forces, Leccisi, then a right-wing journalist, and two helpers dug up the corpse from the city's Musocco cemetery and spirited it away.

Leccisi left behind a note that said: "Finally, O Duce, you are with us. We will cover you with roses but the smell of your virtue will overpower those roses."

Authorities discovered Mussolini's remains four months later, hidden at a 15th-century monastery at Pavia south of Milan. Two monks were charged with hiding the body.

In 1957 Mussolini found a final resting place at his birthplace in Predappio, northern Italy, after a campaign led by Leccisi and his party.[citation needed]

Political career[edit]

Leccisi served as a parliamentary deputy for the neo-fascist Italian Social Movement from 1953 to 1963. He was also a Milan city councillor and wrote an autobiography, "With Mussolini Before and After Piazzale Loreto".


Leccisi died at age 88 on 2 November 2008 at a retirement home in Milan due to heart and respiratory disease.[1]


  1. ^ a b Hevesi, Dennis. "Domenico Leccisi, Italian Political Figure, Dies at 88", The New York Times, November 5, 2008. Accessed November 5, 2008.