White Uno Gang

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The White Uno Gang (Italian: Banda della Uno bianca), was a criminal group operating in Italy, particularly in the Emilia-Romagna region, between the end of the 1980s and the first half of the 1990s.

The name of the gang refers to the car Fiat Uno, a vehicle used in some of their criminal actions because it was easy to steal and difficult to identify given its prevalent usage in Italy at the time of the events.

The members[edit]

Roberto Savi

Roberto Savi[edit]

Born in Forlì on 19 May 1954; together with his brother Alberto was a member of the Polizia di Stato at the Questura of Bologna and covered the radio operator service in the operations center. As a young man he was an activist in the far right wing organization Fronte della Gioventù.[1]

Fabio Savi[edit]

Fabio Savi

Born in Forlì, 22 April 1960; brother of Roberto, co-founder of the gang. He, like his brothers, also applied to join the police, but a vision problem affects his career. Since 14, had many jobs, has a bold and aggressive character. Together with Roberto is the only member present in all the criminal actions of the gang. Fabio is arrested a few days after his brother, 27 kilometers from the border with Austria, while trying to leave the country. He worked as a coachbuilder and truck driver, cohabiting in Torriana with a Romanian girl, Eva Mikula, whose testimony will prove decisive in the resolution of the investigation. After being sentenced to life imprisonment, he was transferred to the Sollicciano prison in Florence, and later to that of Fossombrone.[2]

Alberto Savi[edit]

Born in Cesena, 19 February 1965, younger brother of Roberto and Fabio. Together with the brothers forms the main structure of the gang. He is a policeman like Roberto, at the time of his arrest he serves at the Rimini police station. Weak in character, he suffers the personality of the older brothers. Serving a life sentence since 26 November 1994. After 23 years in prison he received a 12 hours permit in February 2017.[3]

Pietro Gugliotta[edit]

Born in Catania in 1960: he did not take part in the group's murderous actions. However, he was sentenced to 18 years imprisonment. Also a policeman, he worked as a radio operator at the police headquarters in Bologna together with his friend Roberto Savi. He was released in 2008.[4]

Marino Occhipinti[edit]

Born in Santa Sofia, 25 February 1965; a minor member of the gang, he took part in an assault in Casalecchio di Reno on 19 February 1988 during which a security guard dies. He was therefore sentenced to life imprisonment.[5] Since 2002 he works by a cooperative.[6]

Luca Vallicelli[edit]

Policeman at the time of his arrest, which took place on 29 November 1994, he was an agent at the Traffic Police section of Cesena. A minor member of the gang, he only participates in the first robberies, which ended without homicides. He pled guilty and was sentenced to three years and eight months. He is currently a free man, and was dismissed by the police.[5]

Chronology of the main criminal actions[edit]

In business from 1987 to the autumn of 1994, the gang committed 103 criminal acts,[7] causing the death of 24 people and injuring another 102.[8]

1987[edit]

Police officer Antonio Mosca, the first victim of the gang

The gang began its crimes in 1987, devoting itself at night to the robberies of the motorway toll booths along the Autostrada A14. On 19 June 1987 the gang first struck with a robbery at the toll booth of Pesaro, committed using a Fiat Regata owned by Alberto Savi to which they had affixed a false plate; the loot amounted to about 1,300,000 lire.

Immediately after the first shot, the gang scored 12 robberies at toll booths in about 2 months.

In October 1987 they organized an extortion attempt against a Rimini resident, Savino Grossi. The Savi sent a letter to Grossi indicating the procedure for payment. The dealer pretended to give in to blackmail but had already warned the police station in Rimini. On 3 October Savino Grossi went on the highway with his car, hiding a police officer in his luggage rack, while other cars from the Rimini police station followed him a short distance away.

This operation was attended by the inspector Baglioni, whose own investigations in 1994 would lead to the members of the gang.[9] Grossi was contacted by the extortionists and stopped near a flyover just before the toll booth near Cesena. With the intervention of the Police, a firefight broke out in which the inspector Antonio Mosca, who died on 29 July 1989 after a long period of suffering, was seriously injured.[10]

1988[edit]

On 30 January, Giampiero Picello, a security guard in Rimini, was killed during a robbery in a supermarket.[11]

On February 20, Carlo Beccari, a supermarket security guard in Casalecchio di Reno was killed. Francesco Cataldi, a colleague of Beccari, is wounded.[12]

On 20 April, two carabinieri, Cataldo Stasi and Umberto Erriu, were killed while they were in a car park in Castel Maggiore, near Bologna, after they had stopped the car of the Savi.[13][14] For this murder, misdirections by a carabiniere were found out[15][16]

1989[edit]

In 1989, during a robbery in a supermarket in the Corticella frazione of Bologna, Adolfino Alessandri, 52-year-old pensioner eyewitness was riddled with shots.[17]

1990[edit]

In 1990, 6 people were killed.

On 15 January, Giancarlo Armorati was seriously hit in Via Mazzini in Bologna, during a robbery at a post office that wounded many others. He will die a year later from his injuries.

On 6 October, Primo Zecchi, who noted the number of the criminals' license plate, was killed.[18][19]

On 23 December, the gang opens fire on the caravans of the gypsy camp of Bologna in via Gobetti, killing two victims (Rodolfo Bellinati and Patrizia Della Santina) and injuring others.[20]

On 27 December, two people were killed in two different episodes of violence. Luigi Pasqui, a 50-year-old merchant, was killed in a robbery at a Castel Maggiore petrol station while he was trying to sound the alarm. A few minutes later the gang killed Paride Pedini, who had approached the white Uno he found abandoned with open doors.[21]

1991 and the Pilastro massacre[edit]

The Pilastro massacre

On 4 January at around 10 pm, in the Pilastro district of Bologna, a patrol of carabinieri was fired upon by the criminal group.[22] The gang was in that place by chance, on their way to San Lazzaro di Savena, looking for a car to steal. In via Casini the gang's car was overtaken by the patrol and the maneuver was interpreted by the criminals as an attempt to register the plate number and it was decided to liquidate the carabinieri.

After having flanked them, Roberto Savi fired some bullets at the soldiers, on the driver Otello Stefanini's side.[23] Despite the serious injuries suffered, the carabinieri tried to escape, but crashed into rubbish bins. In a short time the car of the carabinieri was hit by a shower of bullets.[24] The other two carabinieri, Andrea Moneta and Mauro Mitilini, managed to get out of the car and to respond to the fire, injuring Roberto Savi. The power of the weapons used by the gang, however, left no hope and both the carabinieri remained on the asphalt. The three ended up with a shot to the back of the head.

The criminal group also took the patrol service paper and fled the site of the conflict. The white Uno involved in the massacre was abandoned in San Lazzaro di Savena in the parking lot of via Gramsci and burned; one of the seats was dirty with the blood of Roberto Savi, who was slightly injured in the abdomen during the firefight. The massacre was immediately claimed by the terrorist group Falange Armata. However, this claim was considered unreliable, since it came after the press release to the mass media. The massacre remained unpunished for about four years. The investigators followed incorrect leads, which led them to indict subjects unrelated to each other. On 20 June 1992, on the basis of false testimony, the two Santagata brothers and the camorra affiliate Marco Medda were arrested, all of whom were prejudiced and residing in the Pilastro quarter. On 25 January 1995 they were declared not guilty of the crime by the tribunal of Bologna.[25][26][27][28]

Later on, the killers will confess the crime during the trial.[24]

On 20 April, Claudio Bonfiglioli was killed in Borgo Panigale during a robbery in his petrol station.[29]

On 2 May, in a gun store in Bologna, Licia Ansaloni, owner of the shop, and Pietro Capolungo, retired carabiniere, are killed.[30] During this robbery, a woman sees Roberto Savi outside of the shop, and after the robbery provides an identikit to the investigators. When it is shown to Ansaloni's husband, he declares that he might look a lot like Roberto Savi, his usual client, a policeman from Bologna. But nobody among the investigators actually connects Savi to the blood evidence.[31]

On 19 June Graziano Mirri, father of a policeman, loses his life in Cesena, killed in front of his wife during a robbery in his petrol station in Viale Marconi.[32][33]

On 18 August, Ndiaj Malik and Babou Chejkh, two Senegalese labourers, were killed in an ambush in San Mauro Mare, frazione of San Mauro Pascoli, while a third one, Madiaw Diaw, was wounded. The attack is not for the purpose of robbery, or due to the desire to eliminate witnesses of a crime, but is motivated by racist convictions of the gang members. Shortly after the double murder, the gang's car cuts off a Fiat Ritmo with a few young men on board, who shouted at the Uno driver for the risky maneuver. Shots are fired at the people in the Ritmo, but they are unharmed.[34]

1992[edit]

In 1992 no homicides are recorded, but the gang commits four bank robberies and one in a supermarket.[35]

1993[edit]

On 24 February the gang is responsible for the murder of Massimiliano Valenti,[33][36][37] a 21-year-old boy who had watched a car change after a bank robbery. The gang kidnapped the young man and then transported him to an isolated area where he was executed.[38] The body of Valenti was found in a ditch in the municipality of Zola Predosa. From the autopsy examination, it emerged holes of bullets on his face fired from top to bottom.[39]

On 7 October, electrician Carlo Poli was killed in the Riale frazione of Zola Predosa.[40]

1994[edit]

In 1994 the gang intensified its criminal activity towards the banks, robbing a total of 9 during the year.[35]

On 24 May, the director of the Cassa di Risparmio bank of Pesaro Ubaldo Paci was shot dead while he was opening at a quarter past eight in the morning.[41][42]

The sentences[edit]

The members of the gang have all been arrested. The trials ended on 6 March 1996 with three life sentences for each of the Savi brothers, a life sentence for Marino Occhipinti, 28 years in prison for Pietro Gugliotta which was then commuted into 18.

Luca Vallicelli, a minor member of the gang, was sentenced to 3 years and 8 months.

After 14 years of imprisonment, in August 2008, Pietro Gugliotta was freed thanks to the launch of the indulto and the Gozzini law.

As part of the gang trial, it was also ordered that the state pay the relatives of the 24 victims 19 billion lire.

The Savi brothers' father, Giuliano Savi, committed suicide on 29 March 1998, swallowing seven boxes of Lorazepam inside a white Uno parked at Villa Verucchio, 13 kilometers from Rimini.[43]

References[edit]

  1. ^ QUANTI ERRORI CON LA UNO BIANCA ... La Repubblica 21 aprile 1995
  2. ^ «Iniziò per scherzo, finì con 24 delitti» Corriere della Sera 14 ottobre 2001
  3. ^ "Uno bianca, l'avvocato di Alberto Savi: "Il dolore non l'ha mai abbandonato"". 6 April 2017. Retrieved 5 September 2017.
  4. ^ "Uno bianca: Pietro Gugliotta torna libero per fine pena". ansa.it. 25 July 2008. Retrieved 27 July 2008.
  5. ^ a b " ma non ammanettatemi davanti ai miei " Corriere della Sera, 30 novembre 1994
  6. ^ "Banda della Uno bianca, al killer vacanza premio nell'hotel di lusso". Retrieved 2017-11-05.
  7. ^ List of criminal actions
  8. ^ La Banda della «Uno bianca» implora il perdono Il Giornale 5 gennaio 2006
  9. ^ la banda della uno bianca 2ª parte - YouTube
  10. ^ Sovrintendente della Polizia di Stato Comm.to di Rimini (Oggi Questura)29 luglio 1989
  11. ^ shtml "Fanne another son" Corriere della Sera November 21, 1995
  12. ^ bomb-resta.html ASSAULT TO THE VAN WITH A BOMB REMAINS KILLED A JURED GUARD La Repubblica February 20, 1988
  13. ^ Wound never closed for the family of Umberto Erriu L 'Unione Sarda 24 February 1995
  14. ^ per-un-processo.html One white twenty years for a useless processLa Repubblica 17 April 2008
  15. ^ Uno bianca: si indaga su un ex carabiniere Corriere della Sera 9 dicembre 1994
  16. ^ Bianca: un carabiniere aiutò a uccidere 2 colleghi? Corriere della Sera - ottobre 1996
  17. ^ «Uno bianca», storia maledetta anche in tv Corriere della Sera 4 febbraio 2001
  18. ^ 3 ottobre 2007 Intitolazione del Giardino della "Noce" a Primo Zecchi
  19. ^ "Quelle "esecuzioni" della Uno bianca". la Repubblica. 25 February 1993. Retrieved 21 October 2009.
  20. ^ TERRORE NEL CAMPO - NOMADI ' CI DIFENDEREMO CON LE ARMI' La Repubblica 27 dicembre 1990
  21. ^ BOLOGNA NELLA MORSA DELLA VIOLENZA La Repubblica 28 dicembre 1990
  22. ^ "Uno Bianca, al Pilastro il ricordo dell'eccidio". la Repubblica (Bologna). 4 January 2007. Retrieved 21 October 2009.
  23. ^ STEFANINI OTELLO Sito dei dell'Arma dei Carabinieri
  24. ^ a b http://www.rai.tv/mpplaymedia/0,,Raitre-BluNotte%5E17%5E174610,00.html
  25. ^ eccidio del Pilastro, strage di mafia Corriere della Sera settembre 1993
  26. ^ strage del Pilastro: sospettato un quarto uomo Corriere della Sera 13 maggio 1993
  27. ^ UNA FAMIGLIA DI KILLER PER LA STRAGE DEL PILASTRO ARRESTATO IL TERZO UOMO La Repubblica 10 settembre 1992
  28. ^ Pilastro, indagini e liti fra polizia e carabinieri Corriere della Sera - Giugno 1992
  29. ^ 'I KILLER VOGLIONO IMPAURIRE BOLOGNA' La Repubblica 23 aprile 1991
  30. ^ BANDE ASSASSINE CONTRO BOLOGNA La Repubblica 3 maggio 1991
  31. ^ La Banda della Uno Bianca La storia siamo noi-RaiTre
  32. ^ Luigi Spezia (21 June 1991). "I KILLER DI BOLOGNA UCCIDONO ANCORA". La Repubblica. Retrieved 6 May 2014.
  33. ^ a b Paola Cascella (28 February 1993). "UNA FIRMA PER QUEL DELITTO". La Repubblica. Retrieved 6 May 2014.
  34. ^ TROVATE TRACCE DEI KILLER DI RIMINI La Repubblica 29 agosto 1991
  35. ^ a b Elenco azioni criminali della banda
  36. ^ "QUELLE ESECUZIONI DELLA UNO BIANCA". La Repubblica. 25 February 1993.
  37. ^ l'omicidio di Bologna. ancora indizi verso la "Uno bianca" Corriere della Sera 27 febbraio 1993
  38. ^ TROPPE SPIETATE ANALOGIE A BOLOGNA TORNA L'INCUBO DELLA 'UNO BIANCA' La Repubblica 26 febbraio 1993
  39. ^ "troppe spietate analogie a Bologna torna l'incubo della 'Uno bianca'". la Repubblica. 26 February 1993. Retrieved 21 October 2009.
  40. ^ Uno Bianca, quattro ergastoli Corriere della Sera 1º giugno 1997
  41. ^ sparò il "lungo" della Uno bianca Corriere della Sera 27 maggio 1994
  42. ^ la banda della Uno bianca torna a colpire: ucciso un bancario Corriere della Sera maggio 1994
  43. ^ Morte del padre