The arrests for the death of Laura Ziliani

The two daughters of Laura Ziliani were arrested, a woman who disappeared on May 8 in Val Camonica, north of Brescia, and found dead three months later: they are accused of killing her together with the boyfriend of one of the two, Mirto Milani, with the intent to appropriate the inheritance. The prosecutor of Brescia has been investigating the case for months, and the hypothesis of the murder had been circulating in the newspapers for a long time: but it was the result of the autopsy on the woman’s body that led to the arrests. In fact, traces of Bromazepan, a benzodiazepine, have been found, which may have been used to sedate Ziliani before carrying out the murder.

In the first days after Ziliani’s disappearance, investigators focused on the possibility of an accident in the mountains. After a few weeks, however, a series of elements had led them to focus on the possibility that the woman had been murdered and that her body had been hidden. The suspicions had fallen on two of the woman’s three daughters, Silvia and Paola Zani, aged 19 and 27, respectively a student of Economics and employed in an RSA, and on the latter’s boyfriend, Mirto Milani, a graduate in psychology in Bergamo and musician, enrolled at the Milan Conservatory.

Laura Ziliani, according to the story of her daughters Paola and Silvia, went out on the morning of May 8 from her family home in Temù, a village of 1,100 inhabitants 80 km from Brescia, to go trekking in the valley. The woman, who was 55 years old and was a former security guard employed in Roncadelle, in the Brescia area, had lived for some years in Urago Mella, also in the Brescia area, after she was widowed in 2012 (her husband had died overwhelmed by an avalanche while skiing) . The new partner and the third daughter, the middle one, lived with her. Most weekends she returned to the Temù house, where her other two daughters now lived.

Police dogs had spotted traces of the woman along a road that led away from the house towards the local woods. However, other traces had not been found and in the meantime some contradictions had emerged in the story of the two daughters and Mirto Milani. First of all, in the days of May 8 and in the previous ones, the traffic of their cell phones, delivered to the investigators, was very low, which was considered rather anomalous, leading to the hypothesis that in those days they had used other phones.

The two girls then said that on the morning of May 8 they had seen their mother typing on her cell phone, as if she were doing a search or writing to someone. But from the analysis the phone, which had been found behind a staircase in the house, had been turned off the night before. In addition, the GPS of the watch, never found, that Laura Ziliani always kept on her wrist, was also off.

The mother of the missing woman, Marisa Ziliani, had told the carabinieri that she knew that her daughter had repeatedly expressed strong discomfort because Mirto Milani was heavily interfering in the family’s economic affairs. In particular, the two had often discussed about future renovations of the family home which, in the projects, was to be transformed into a bed and breakfast. Laura Ziliani wanted to delay the start of the works, in which she asked that her daughters also participate financially.

The phones of the three young men had been put under control: a certain euphoria had emerged on the part of the two daughters in managing entirely the money coming from the rent of a house owned by the family. Mirto Milani, on the other hand, on the phone with a friend had hypothesized that the woman had run away somewhere to escape the creditors. He also said that he felt Ziliani was incapable of managing her own money and that the family’s economic situation was disastrous.

On June 28, Silvia and Paola Zani and Mirto Milani were investigated with the hypothesis of voluntary murder and concealment of a corpse. Five days earlier, a woman’s hiking shoe had been found on a small bridge over the Fiumeclo stream, an emissary from Oglio. No one, during the research, had noticed it before. The other shoe had been found soon after, hidden among some brambles not far away. The woman’s jeans were also found in the stream. On 8 August the body of Laura Ziliani was found on the shore of the Oglio, in the territory of Vione.

For the carabinieri, the discovery of the shoe was only an attempt at misdirection. Said Giuseppe Pasina, the mayor of Temù, interviewed by Republic: “It is impossible for a woman who has disappeared there to end up in the spot where she was found.” From the first analyzes on the woman’s body it was revealed that there were no signs of violence and not even fractures. But above all, the condition of the corpse was immediately judged incompatible with exposure for 90 days to the elements. The hypothesis of the Prosecutor of Brescia is that the body was transported to the shore of the Oglio long after being killed.

The place where the body was found. (Ansa / Filippo Venezia)

The arrest of Milani and the two Zani sisters came after the toxicological results of the autopsy. With regard to the substances detected, the anatomopathologists’ report says that “it is possible to believe that at the time of death the woman was under the influence of this compound, even potentially capable of compromising her defense capacity against harmful external insults”.

In the arrest order, signed by the investigating judge of Brescia Alessandra Sabatucci, the hypothesis is reported that “Ziliani Laura found death inside the home at the hands of the three subjects present there on the evening of the fact and that subsequent events more they are nothing more than an attempt to mislead the perpetrators of the crime “. According to the order of the investigating judge, “the homicidal intention is the result of a long premeditation and a criminal plan that allowed them to conceal death for a long time and to sidetrack investigations”.

As for the alleged motive, the ordinance defines it as “purely economic, or rather the intent to appropriate the family patrimony exclusively, partly already in the legal availability of the Zani sisters”. Reference is also made to an alleged “criminal efficiency” of the three suspects, due to the fact that “in a single night they got rid of the victim’s body and, the next morning, they started calling for help and carried out a complete reconstruction. alternative of the facts, even in the face of investigations by the Carabinieri ».

The hypothesis of the carabinieri is that Laura Ziliani, stunned by benzodiazepines, was then suffocated with a pillow. There are still no known hypotheses on what could possibly have happened after the woman’s death. The body did not present traces compatible with a long stay in water: the investigative hypothesis is that it may have been hidden in an environment whose characteristics have slowed down the decomposition process. On Tuesday there will be the guarantee questioning of the three suspects.

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