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Conference: Giovanni Falcone, Italian Hero: To Die For Justice
Start Date: 12/1/2012Start Time: 8:30 AM
End Date: 12/1/2012End Time: 4:30 PM

Event Description:
In 1992, twenty years ago, a massive bomb explosion on the highway from the airport to Palermo killed Judge Giovanni Falcone, his wife, and three bodyguards. Judge Falcone's friend and colleague, Paolo Borsellino, and five members of his police escort were killed fifty-seven days later by a bomb that the mafia had planted near the home of Borselino's mother in Palermo. Former mafia boss Salvatore Riina, who ordered the attacks, was arrested months later and is serving a life sentence. Other members of the mafia involved in the assassinations have been brought to justice. In the meantime, however, allegations of complicity on the part of politicians and members of the Italian secret service have arisen. Mystery and suspicion still surround the assassination of Falcone and Borsellino. Journalists and prosecutors have been investigating a possible plot with "state complicity" to eliminate the two judges; their inquiries were regarded by some as having a "destabilizing" effect on the power system of the Italian Republic. Regardless, the triumphs of Falcone and Borsellino against the mafia, the crime-fighting strategies and methods they pioneered, and their heroic sacrifices have had a profound and lasting impact in Italy and beyond. This Conference will explore the events of 1992 and the legacy of Giovanni Falcone from a variety of perspectives.


8:30 AM Coffee Reception and Registration

9:00 AM Greetings and Welcome Remarks
Mario B. Mignone: Distinguished Service Professor and Director, Center for Italian Studies, Stony Brook University

Samuel L. Stanley Jr., MD: President, Stony Brook University

Natalia Quintavalle: Minister Plenipotentiary and Consul General of Italy in New York

Gail Prudenti: Chief Administrative Justice, State of New York

9:45 AM Screening of Documentary, Courtesy of RAI

10:15 AM Part One: Perspectives from the Italian Justice System
Chairperson: Sebastian Rotella, Author and Senior Reporter for ProPublica
Pietro Grasso: Chief Prosecutor National Anti-Mafia Bureau:Falcone Vive, (Falcone Lives)
Stefano Dambruoso: Deputy Chief of Staff, Ministry for the Environment, Rome: Transnational Judiciary Cooperation and Giovanni Falcone’s Commitment
Stefano Mogini: Italy’s Justice Attaché to the United Nations: Falcone: A Driving Force in the United States-Italy and International Cooperation to Fight Organized Crime

Optional - Lunch with Conferees: $15 per person at the Simons Center Cafe. For Advance Reservations (Required), call 631-632-7444 or email

1:00 PM Greetings and Remarks from New York State Comptroller Thomas Di Napoli

1:15 PM Part Two: Falcone and the Sicilian Mafia, Perspective from the United States
Chairperson: Salvatore Rotella, Chancellor Emeritus, Riverside College, California
Carmine F. Russo: Former FBI Special Agent:A Sicilian-Born FBI Agent and Giovanni Falcone: An Extraordinary Symbiosis
Thomas A. Repetto: Author and Former Head of the New York Crime Commission: The American Mafia and Italy
Stefano Vaccara Journalist and Lecturer at Lehman College, CUNY: The Mafia Illustrious Corpses from the Kennedys to Falcone and Borsellino

Coffee Break

3:00 PM Part Three: International Legacy and Historical Context
Chairperson: Mario B. Mignone
Sebastian Rotella Author and Senior Reporter for ProPublica: Falcone’s International Legacy: A Foreign Correspondent’s Perspective
Marcello Saija Professor, University of Palermo, Italy: Mafia, Politics and the Massacres of 1992: Historical Considerations

4:00 PM Q & A Session with Sebastian Rotella

Closure: Farewell Reception in the Simons Cafe
Location Information:
West Campus - Simons Center for Geometry and Physics  (View Map)
Stony Brook University
Stony Brook, NY 11794
Phone: (631) 632-4459
Room: Auditorium
Contact Information:
Name: Jo Fusco
Phone: 632-7444

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