NEWS » Shootings at Fiorentina Napoli Cup Final
Shootings at Fiorentina Napoli Cup Final
The recent Italian cup final Napoli – Fiorentina was delayed due to episodes of violence near the “Olympic stadium” in Rome. Rival supporters threw firecrackers and other objects at each other before the game and also pistols were fired. The match was due to kick off at 7pm on Saturday the 4th of May but it was delayed by 45 minutes. Three men had been wounded and one of them, Ciro Esposito, from Scampia, a northern suburb of Naples, was shot in the chest and his prognosis is still reserved.
A Roma supporter Daniele De Santis was arrested and charged with attempted homicide. De Santis was already known by the authorities for episodes of violence. Known with the nickname “Gastone”, De Santis is a reference point for the right-winged Roma Ultras. In 1994, at the age of 28, he was arrested (and later acquitted) during clashes between Brescia and Rome, where the deputy superintendent of police officers Giovanni Selmin was stabbed, and 16 police officers were seriously injured with an axe. In 1996 De Santis was arrested along with other members of the extreme right Giallorossi fans because of a series of threats to the then president of Rome team, Franco Sensi. At the Roma-Lazio derby in 2004, along with six other fans, De Santis managed to call off the game, spreading the false news that during the violent clashes near the Olympic stadium a child was dead, crushed by a police van. On the 25th of September 2008 the court of Rome decided that the offense was statute-barred.
When the news of the shootings on Saturday became known Napoli supporters asked for the match to be cancelled. The spokesperson of the Napoli supporters was Gennaro De Tommaso – nicknamed Genny ‘a carogna, leading figure among Napoli’s ultras. It has been reported that Gennaro is the son of Ciro De Tommaso, a man with alleged connections with the Camorra.
Gennaro De Tommaso wore a black shirt with the slogan "Free Speziale" on the front. Antonio Speziale is a Catania ultra who was jailed for eight years in 2007 for killing the policeman Filippo Raciti after a Sicilian derby.
Polemics aroused about the negotiation of the authorities with the ultras but Rome’s police chief, Massimo Mazza later denied that anything of the kind had taken place.